There was a failed operation by the United States military targeted on another senior Iranian military official in Yemen, on same night Iranian commander Qasem Soleimani was killed according to a United States official with knowledge of the events and a familiar source.
According to the sources in a statement to CNN, The United States official said in the best of their knowledge, there is no broader operation to decapitate the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps Quds force leadership at this time, though no details about the mission was disclosed be the sources.
In a statement to CCN, Cmdr. Rebecca Rebarich the spokeswoman of Pentagon acknowledged the knowledge of the report but refused giving any additional information.
She said”We have seen the report of a January 2 airstrike in Yemen, which is long-understood as a safe space for terrorists and other adversaries to the United States. The Department of Defense does not discuss alleged operations in the region,” in a statement to CNN.
In the normal routine of the Department of Defense and Us Central Command, an on-the-record statements about the United States strikes in Yemen despite the Pentagon’s assertion.
The incident was first reported by the Washington post.
According to the post, Abdul Reza Shahlai, a financier and key commander of Iran’s Quds Force, an elite wing of the Iranian military operating throughout the Middle East was the Iranian target.
Brian Hook, the State Department Special Representative for Iran announced the administration was offering up to $15million for information on financial activities, networks and associates of Abdul Reza Shahlai.
Trump administration’s claims of killing Soleimani in response to an impending threat to American lives, has been defended by top United States National Security Officials, there has been a lingering skepticism as to if the strike was justified between the law makers and the public due to the lack of evidence provided, answers has been demanded by the law makers.
More questions has been raised due to the new development about the administration’s explanation for killing Soleimani.
A Democrat Representative, Ro Khanna of California tweeted on Friday in a reaction to the news, he said “Congress needs answers. What was the full extent of the Trump administration’s plans to kill Iranian officials? how does the attempted killing in Yemen have anything to do with an imminent threat?”
Soleimani and the Quds Force has been blamed for attacks on coalition bases in Iraq in recent months, the December 27 strike which killed an American contractor and Iraqi personnel, the December 31 United States Embassy attack in Baghdad by the Pentagon. According to the United States military, Soleimani was also responsible for killing hundreds in his time as a commander and wounding thousands more.
on Thursday, President Trump spoke to reporters, he said “We caught a total monster, we took them out, and that should’ve happened a long time ago. We did it because they were looking to blow up our Embassy”.
Trump added “We also did it for other reasons that were very obvious. Somebody died……. People were badly wounded just a week before, and we did it. We had a sot at it…….That was the end of a monster”. He referred to a recent rocket attack by an Iranian-backed militia group in Iraq, Khatib Hezbollah, which killed an American contractor and wounded several United States military personnel.
In an interview with Fox News Friday, Trump claimed Soleimani was targeting four embassies before he was killed.
Following briefings by Mike Pompeo, Secretary of State and Mark Esper, Secretary of Defense, the administration’s briefing on the reason for the strike was on Wednesday slammed by two prominent Senate Republicans and Congressional Democrats, after which the President’s comments came.
According to multiple lawmakers, they see no specific intelligence aimed at an imminent threat from Soleimani that justified the strike.
Airstrikes targeting the Yemen based affiliates of al Qaeda and ISIS has been conducted by the US military and small counter-terrorism teams on the ground to target those terrorist groups most times.
The Saudi-led coalition, that supports the Yemeni Government in its fight with the Houthis who receives assistance from Iran, has also been provided very limited noncombat support from the United States.
The practice by the United States of aerial refueling of Saudi and Emirate jets ended last year, but it continues to share intelligence focused on countering Houthi missile and drone attacks, advice on processes and procedures aimed at helping to avoid civilian casualties are also provided.
Iran has long been accused by the United States of supplying the Houthi with missiles and other sophisticated weapons used in attacks.
In early 2015, the Yemen conflict began when a United States-backed government was over thrown and power taken over in Sanaa the capital, by the Houthi rebels, a minority Shia group from the north of the country, the crisis saw a quick escalation into multi-sided war, with a coalition of Gulf States against the Houthi rebels led by neighboring Saudi Arabia.
The Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project gave a report last June, according to this report, more than 91,000 people have been killed in the conflict since 2015, it also reported that the Saudi-led coalition and its allies had been responsible for more than 8,000 of the approximately 11,700 deaths connected to the direct targeting of civilians in the conflict.
A resolution (SR7) which called on the Trump administration to end all hostilities in Yemen that weren’t expressly authorized by the Congress was passed last year by both the House and Senate in a rare moment of bipartisanship. In April, Trump voted the resolution and the support of the Saudi-led effort in Yemen continues.
It is the President’s job to enact United States foreign policy Trump’s administration insists, and any attempt to limit his authority is inappropriate. Trump argued the Congress was overstepping its bounds in his veto message response to SR7, he wrote “This resolution is an unnecessary, dangerous attempt to weaken my constitutional authorities, endangering the lives of American citizens and brave service members, both today and in the future”
As Compiled by Sylvester Akhigbe
Edited by Knight Fredel
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WONDER PLANET NEWSPAPER (c) 2020