Publisher's note: This informational nugget was sent to me by Ben Shapiro, who represents the Daily Wire, and since this is one of the most topical news events, it should be published on BCN.
The author of this post is Hank Berrien.
Friday morning on Fox & Friends, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo spoke about the U.S. airstrike that killed Qassem Soleimani, leader of Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps' (IRGC) Qod's Force, a designated terrorist organization, asserting, "I think the Iranian leadership understands President Trump will take action.'
Pompeo stated that the airstrike came after the U.S. discovered there would be an imminent attack:
- President Trump made a decision that was necessary. There was an imminent attack; the orchestrator, the primary motivator of the attack was Qassem Soleimani; (this was) an attempt to disrupt that plot. You all have been talking this morning about who the history of who Qassem Soleimani is; he's got hundreds of American lives with blood on his hands, but what was sitting before us was his travels throughout the region in his efforts to make a significant strike against Americans. There would have been many Muslims killed as well, Iraqis, people in other countries as well. It was a strike that was aimed at both disrupting that plot and deterring further aggression, we hope setting the conditions for de-escalation as well.
Pompeo noted the dozens and dozens of attacks in recent months against Allied interests in the region by Iran and its proxies, "culminating in what happened with an American killed on December 27, but we've had artillery rounds fired in the direction of Americans to Iraqi facilities. There have been a series of actions, and we've watched that escalation take place. There was an American UAV shot down; the restraint that President Trump had shown was important, and it's now the time we need to take action to restore deterrence. The men and women who are on the ground there today, we take seriously the need foe their security; we're working on it; we've been planning for this, and we're prepared."
Pompeo continued, "I think the Iranian leadership understands that President Trump will take action. We've made this clear for months; when I was CIA director, we made very clear that these responses would be swift and decisive. We have now demonstrated that. I hope that the Iranian leadership will see that and see American resolve and that their decision will be to de-escalate and take actions consistent with what normal nations do. And in the event that they do not, in the event they go in the other direction, I know that President Trump and the entire United States government is prepared to respond appropriately."
Pompeo pointed out the celebratory response in Iraq after the U.S. airstrike, saying, "We gave the Iraqis a real opportunity; we watched these protests over the last months; these protests weren't against America. They were against the terrible leadership that had come out of Iraq over the past decades. And we watched last night and you saw the video of Iraqis dancing in the streets. They're happy, too. The absence of Qassem Soleimani is a boon to this region. We reduced risk last night; it was very clear that we did so, and we will continue to take action to reduce risk and protect America. President Trump has been very clear about that, and nothing is different today than it was yesterday with respect to that."
Host Steve Doocy noted, "In the past, you have been critical of certain members of President Obama's administration, who you felt were undermining the president's maximum pressure campaign by saying to Iran behind the scenes, "Hey, just hang on; once he loses in 2020 we'll go back to the way things used to be."
Pompeo responded, "That kind of activity is never appropriate, and it's especially bad when it puts American lives at risk. So I would hope that those former administration officials would just simply get off the stage and allow President Trump and our team to do the right thing. Look, we took a very different approach; we didn't send pallets of cash to the Iranians. We didn't pay for hostages. We didn't create a deal which would have given them a clear pathway to a nuclear weapon. We have taken a very different approach. We believe it's the one that will ultimately lead to success and stability in the Middle East."