Iran is trying to inflict “revenge” on the United States following the assassination of Al-Quds Force commander Qassem Soleimani, according to the director of national intelligence.
Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who was serving in President Donald Trump’s cabinet when Soleimani was killed, has been targeted by Iran, his successor Antony Blinken told Congress last month. Avril Haines, the director of national intelligence, attributed Iran’s efforts against current and former US officials as an attempt to avenge Soleimani’s death in January 2020 in Iraq, where he was killed in a US strike. .
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“We feel that a lot of their motivation in this scenario has to do with Soleimani as part of their revenge efforts, and that’s a particularly difficult area, I think, to dissuade them from acting in this space,” she said. , noting that she could go into more detail in a classified setting.
Pompeo is not the only former Trump official to be in Iran’s crosshairs. Former national security adviser John Bolton has also been the target of alleged assassination plots, among others. A Feb. 14 State Department report to Congress found it costs the Diplomatic Security Service $2 million a month to protect Pompeo.
As U.S. officials face threats from Iran, the Biden administration is seeking to reinstate a deal similar to the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, which seeks to cap Iran’s nuclear activity in exchange for a rollback of international sanctions and was later dropped by the Trump administration. .
One possible concession the United States has considered is to remove the terrorist designation from Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps, although the idea has received significant backlash, and General Mark Milley, the chairman of the heads of state- Joint Major, told Congress last month that he was not doing so. support such an approach.
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The United States has also offered sanctions relief on Iran, and Lt. Gen. Scott Berrier, director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, who testified with Haines, acknowledged that incoming revenue “could increase targeting against our partners in the region as well as US forces”. .”