FORT BRAGG – Qasem Soleimani was arguably the second most powerful figure in the Islamic Republic of Iran. He was also, provably, a mastermind terrorist with a long history of organizing the murder of Americans, Jews, and anyone else that stood int he way of the ulimate goals of the 1979 Islamic Revolution. After a series of escalating and deadly provocations in Iraq, and before Soleimani could craft yet another deadlu attack on Americans, President Donald Trump gave the order to take him out.
The drone-launched, precision-guided bombs that killed the notorious Iranian general and nearly half a dozen other terrorists may have fallen, with pinpoint accuracy, outside the Baghdad International Airport, but their blast was felt right here in North Carolina less than a day later.
From the Associated Press:
“Lt. Col. Mike Burns, a spokesman for the 82nd Airborne Division, told The Associated Press 3,500 members of the division’s quick-deployment brigade, known officially as its Immediate Response Force, will have deployed within a few days. The most recent group of service members to deploy will join about 700 who left earlier in the week, Burns said. […]
The additional troop deployments reflect concerns about potential Iranian retaliatory action in the volatile aftermath of Friday’s drone strike that killed Gen. Qassem Soleimani, the head of Iran’s elite Quds Force who has been blamed for attacks on U.S. troops and American allies going back decades. […]
Burns said the soldiers within the Immediate Response Force train constantly to be ready to respond quickly to crises abroad. When called by their superiors, they have two hours to get to base with their gear and must maintain a state of readiness so that they can be in the air headed to their next location within 18 hours.
“So whether they were on leave, whether they were home drinking a beer, whether they were, you know, hanging out, throwing the kids up in the yard, you get the call and it’s time to go,” he said. […]”
The Fayetteville community is used to banding together during times of heavy deployment, but not usually on such a quick turn around. Still, the military town and the families will work together as they enter a New Year none were likely expecting.
Of course, the cabal of anti-Trump forces here at home are doing their best to bolster the anti-American forces abroad it seems as they denigrate the president for what they frame as a reckless and impulsive aggravation of the Middle East tinderbox.
Yet, it takes only a cursory and honest look at the facts to understand the deliberate and decisive aim of targeting Soleimani. Iran’s effective annexation of Iraq via the IRGC, Quds Force and loyal militias; the targeting of Americans by those forces ever since the Iraq wars, and especially lately; the Iranian assault on oil tankers in the Strait of Hormuz; the missile attacks on Saudi Arabia’s largest refinery; the recent organized storming of the US Embassy; all overseen by Soleimani and precursors to what he planned to do next.
Taking out Soleimani sends the strongest possible message to the Iranian ayatollahs that consistently and repeatedly threaten ‘Death to America’ while muscle like Soleimani delivered it. The strength of the Iranian regime’s reaction is a testament to the significant damage done to their ability to dominate the region and terrorize their opposition with out their prized general mastermind.
No one wants war; not the families here, or those in Iran. It was just weeks that protests against the theocratic regime and the IRGC ravaged the nation. Their economy is in tatters under the weight of sanctions enforced in response to their sponsor of terrorism around the world. They’ve been under 40 years of darkness and many are cheering the death of a man they view as a leading promulgator of their oppression.
When an oil or gas well catches fire, there’s not a hose powerful enough to douse the raging flames. So, counter-intuitively, they blow it up with dynamite. The strength of the blast puts out the fire. Hopefully blasting one of the world’s most prolific Islamic terrorists snuffs out a wider conflagration. We pray for the safe return of all United States service men and women deployed in response to the weekend’s events in order to protect American personnel in the region from any further aggression by the Iranians. Their families, of course, are in our prayers as well.