The targeted assassination of Major General Qassim Soleimani was one of President Trump’s boldest and bravest moves to date. It outdoes his elimination of ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi (See my article “Trump’s Middle East Shakeup Led to Killing of Al-Baghdadi,” 11/4/19).
Although President Obama deserved credit for Seal Team Six’s killing of Osama bin Laden - I did not hesitate to thank him - the “take-out” of Qassim Soleimani is on a whole new level.
Osama bin Laden had a ragtime army of several hundred. Soleimani led an army of tens of thousands. Tactically and strategically, the drone strike on Soleimani was of much more importance, magnitude, and scale. Even General David Petraeus said, “This is bigger than Bin Laden.”
Soleimani was not only responsible for the murder of 600 U.S. soldiers and the permanent injury of thousands, he was also the head of the Quds Force, which the United States designated a foreign terrorist organization.
Iran is the Number-one state sponsor of terrorism today. Soleimani was the Number-one exporter of Iran’s terrorism. The $150 billion given to Iran as part of the Iran deal was used to boost their worldwide terrorism.
Soleimani was involved in Iranian military activity in Iraq, Afghanistan, Caucasus, Lebanon, and Syria. He was instrumental in instructing, arming and directing Hezbollah.
He was the mastermind behind the bombing of the Jewish Community Center in Buenos Aires in 1994 which killed 85 innocent people and injured hundreds.
He was the man behind the attack on an Israeli tour bus in Burgas, Bulgaria in 2012 which killed five Israelis, one Bulgarian bus driver, and wounded 32 Israelis.
He was responsible for shipping missiles to the Palestinian Authority in 2002. Israel intercepted his shipment onboard the Karine A.
The decisive action against Soleimani is just the first step necessary in order to stop Iran’s goal of acquiring nuclear weapons. Iran can never be trusted. John Bolton taught me that principle very well. The President knows this. He is giving the mullahs time to make a deal similar to the one struck between Muammar Gaddafi and George W. Bush in 2003, in which Gaddafi agreed to eliminate his country’s weapons of mass destruction, including a decades-old nuclear weapons program. He also knows this is unlikely.
Israeli military officials I have spoken to have assured me that the bombing of Iran’s nuclear facilities is feasible and not nearly as difficult as the media would have you believe. It could also be done in a relatively short amount of time.
If Iran continues to foment terrorism around the globe and enrich uranium, I would encourage the President to strike Iran’s nuclear reactors sooner rather than later, whether it is an election year or not. Just as he made the world a safer place after his “hit” on Soleimani, he will make the world a much safer place after destroying Iran’s nuclear capabilities. Iran has now been served notice.
Joseph M. Frager is a physician and lifelong activist.