Iran’s top general: US, Zionists rattled thanks to General Soleimani’s martyrdom
Chief of Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces Major General Mohammad Hossein Baqeri said the martyrdom of General Qassem Soleimani has made the US and the Zionist regime unsteady.
In comments at a cultural ceremony in Kerman on Tuesday, General Baqeri paid tribute to General Soleimani for his bravery and wisdom in the battlefield and his prudence in the diplomatic arena, Tasnim News Agency reported.
He said the martyrdom of General Soleimani has resulted in the shakiness of the Americans and Zionists.
Reaffirming the Iranian military forces’ determination to follow the legacy of General Soleimani, the commander said Iranians will never back off from pursuing the aspirations of the Islamic Revolution.
General Soleimani, Iran’s anti-terror commander, was assassinated alongside Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, deputy head of Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Units (PMU), in a US drone strike directly ordered by former president Donald Trump, near Baghdad International Airport on January 3, 2020.
Both commanders were highly popular because of the key roles they played in eliminating the Daesh terrorist group in the region, particularly in Iraq and Syria.
Five days later, Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) launched a volley of ballistic missiles at the Ain al-Asad airbase in Iraq’s western province of Anbar and at another airbase in Erbil in the Kurdistan Region. Over 100 American troops in Ain al-Asad were later diagnosed with “traumatic brain injuries.”
Iran has called Soleimani’s assassination state terrorism and vowed to put an end to the US military’s presence in the region as its ultimate revenge, while urging neighboring Iraq to expel US forces from the Arab country’s soil. The Islamic Republic has also pledged to bring all the perpetrators, first and foremost Trump, to justice.
In recent days, people in Iran, Iraq, and elsewhere have been attending events marking the second anniversary of the two commanders’ martyrdom.
Iran envoy: Raeisi’s Russia visit ‘turning point’ in mutual ties
Iran’s ambassador to Russia said the upcoming visit by President Seyyed Ebrahim Raeisi to Moscow will be a “turning point” in bilateral relations with Russia.
Kazem Jalali noted that there is no plan for signing a long-term comprehensive cooperation pact during the visit. That’s because the draft of the comprehensive cooperation has been prepared by Iran but the Russian side should also give an opinion about it, IRNA reported.
Jalali further explained that Raeisi will meet his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin. The talks will focus on mutual, regional and international developments.
The envoy added that Iran and Russia first signed a 20-year cooperation agreement in 2001, which would have expired in 2021. However, he said that the agreement contains a mechanism that allows its automatic extension for another five years if both sides agree to do so.
President Raeisi will leave for Russia in the coming days.
Iran, resistance front flag-bearer of new regional geopolitics: Leader’s military adviser
A top military adviser to Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei described the Muslim world as a future power that can compete with current dominating Western and Eastern powers, saying Iran and the resistance front are reshaping the geopolitics in the region.
Speaking at the International Conference on Iran and Neighbors on Tuesday, Major General Yahya Rahim Safavi said the current century will witness the Muslim world as a new pole of power with a cultural, civilizational, economic, and demographic nature that would put up great resistance against Western and Eastern powers.
The geopolitics of resistance means “changing the social, cultural (religious), economic, and military structures and processes of the Islamic Ummah (community) so as to gain freedom and independence and form the Islamic world’s power in competition with the dominating powers of the West and East at various national, regional, and global levels,” Rahim Safavi said.
“The flag-bearer of this new geopolitics is the Islamic Revolution forces, the Islamic Awakening movements and the resistance front led by the Leader of the Islamic Revolution and the late founder of the Islamic Republic [Imam Khomeini],” he added.
Rahim Safavi also noted that following the 1979 Islamic Revolution, the resistance focused on the issue of Palestine and the Zionist regime’s aggression and occupation, followed by the struggle against corrupt and oppressive governments in Islamic countries.
He also stressed Iran’s role in presenting and institutionalizing the concept of resistance after the former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein’s imposed war against Iran in the 1980s.
IRGC’s Quds Force
‘engine of resistance’
The commander further cited Lebanon’s Hezbollah resistance movement, Palestinian resistance groups, Iraq, and Syria as members of a new resistance bloc, saying, “With the birth of the Ansarullah movement in Yemen, this bloc or axis is having another official member today.”
Rahim Safavi, a former chief commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC), hailed the IRGC’s Quds Force as “the engine and operating agent of the resistance”.
“In fact, what has made the United States angry with the Islamic Republic is the process of generating power in Iran’s regional politics. This power has been created in the first layer in West Asia with the wise and courageous leadership of the Leader of the Islamic Revolution and the role of the Quds Force in the battlefield under the command of the martyred general, Qassem Soleimani,” he said.
“In parallel with the advent of the new arrangement or order led by the Islamic Republic in West Asia, based on the shared goal of countering American hegemony, Latin American countries, including Venezuela, Cuba, and Peru, have also strengthened their ties with the resistance front,” he added.
Iran reports 34 deaths from COVID-19
Iran reported 34 fatalities from COVID-19 in 24 hours, bringing the total death toll to 131,736.
The Health Ministry put the total number of people infected with the coronavirus at 6,200,200 after the detection of 1,706 new cases from Monday to Tuesday, according to IRNA.
The ministry added that 358 COVID patients were also hospitalized during the same period.
Some 2,470 victims of COVID-19 are in severe condition and are being treated in intensive care facilities, it said.
The ministry also said that over 59.95 million Iranians have received the first dose of the coronavirus vaccine, over 52.26 million have received the second dose, and more than 8.75 million have gotten booster shots.
Soleimani’s assassination backfired on US, Israel
The US assassination of Iran’s top commander General Qassem Soleimani has backfired on Washington and Tel Aviv as they have “failed abysmally” to achieve their objective of pushing Tehran back.
In an article published on Monday, on the second anniversary of General Soleimani’s assassination, the Middle East Eye cast doubts on the effect of the assassination to alter the strategic landscape of the region in favor of the US and Israel.
The article opined that it is difficult to argue that Iran is more deterred than it was before General Soleimani’s assassination, Press TV wrote.
Referring to the Israeli manipulation behind former US president Donald Trump’s decision to assassinate the top Iranian strategist, it added, “The then prime minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, thought he was being clever in persuading Trump to withdraw from the 2015 Iran deal, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), in 2018, and apparently twisted his arm in doing the dirty work of Soleimani’s elimination for Israel. However, it is becoming clear that neither decision served Israel’s national interest, not to mention that of the US.”
It further enumerated US policy failures in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Yemen and Palestine, particularly as they relate to the assassination.
“The US has humiliatingly withdrawn from Afghanistan, losing the game in Central Asia, with potentially serious repercussions in Western Asia, too; the Iraqi parliament has voted for the US’s complete withdrawal from the country; the Syrian government maintains and consolidates its grip on the useful part of its country, as once-hostile Arab leaders are now increasingly going back to Damascus; and Hezbollah continues to hold sway over the Lebanese political landscape,” the opinion piece claimed.
It added: “Further, the Houthis (Ansarullah movement), no matter how heavily Saudi Arabia is bombing Yemen, are close to winning the strategic city of Marib, one of the most important Saudi strongholds in the country. Hamas still holds Gaza – last spring Israel, for the first time in its history, saw its Arab citizens siding with the Palestinians protesting in the street of Al-Quds, leaving the chilling sensation of a possible civil war inside” the occupied territories.
On January 3, 2020, the US military conducted an air operation under Trump’s order targeting General Soleimani at Baghdad International Airport after his arrival. The attack also killed the general’s companions, including Deputy Commander of the Popular Mobilization Units (PMU) Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis.
Iran has called General Soleimani’s assassination “state terrorism” and vowed to put an end to the US military’s presence in the region as the ultimate act of revenge.
As part of its retaliation, the Islamic Republic launched a volley of ballistic missiles at the Ain al-Asad airbase in Iraq’s western province of Anbar and another airbase in Erbil on January 8, 2020, as a result of which 110 US troops were diagnosed with “traumatic brain injuries”.
The Middle East Eye further said, “If the principals behind Soleimani’s killing bet on Iran’s self-deterrence, they miscalculated, as the bombing of the US al-Asad base in Iraq has proven – a far more damaging and accurate attack than it was initially considered.”
Seyyed Rasoul Mousavi, an assistant to Iran’s foreign minister, called the unprofessional behavior by Afghan forces under Taliban as the main
reason behind border clashes, IRNA reported.