The Stars and Stripes Strike Soleimani

The Stars and Stripes Strike Soleimani

War has remained constant throughout US history. It’s shaped us, fueled our economy and helped establish dominance over the world. However, have we reached a point in civilization where war isn’t necessary anymore? Should we refrain from instigating potentially dangerous countries – or does the US need to continually keep the world in check? This issue becomes substantial when an assassination occurs in a country with a history of hatred of the USA. Trump made a hasty decision that took out dangerous military general, Qasem Soleimani, that was both beneficial, yet detrimental to the country. 

There’s no getting around the fact that Soleimani did not like the US. He had been waging a “shadow war” with the US the years leading up to his death. He supplied highly advanced weapons to militias that targeted the US troops in Iraq. These militias are responsible for the deaths of 500 American service members. They’ve also wounded even more than that. Not only that, but Soleimani had led a campaign to salvage the Syrian civil war and planned to take over the Syrian capital of Aleppo. Qasem Soleimani was a founding father of the Lebanese terrorist organization, Hezbollah, responsible for attacks in Iraq, and American military bases within the region. Also, he has assisted other terrorist groups, such as Yemen’s Houthis and Gaza militants. There was also speculation that his subordinates were plotting to kill a Saudi Diplomat and that he had something to do with the 2011 Saudi oil refinery attacks. Not to mention his continual development in the country’s nuclear program, which undermined American allies in the area. 

The assassination of Soleimani was said to establish a stronger American presence in the Middle East and stop a “revolutionary regime” that has killed many Americans and their allies. However, did Trump carry out this assassination the right way, and will it stop Iran from causing trouble in the Middle East? Policymakers in Washington gave Trump several options in dealing with Iran – one of the extremes being resorting to the assassination. They figured Trump would find a middle ground that would satisfy both him and other politicians. However, without much thought, Trump quickly gave the go-ahead to kill the General. Trump made his decision in a room at Mar-a-Lago with a small group of people, instead of discussing with politicians in the Situation Room. He avoided the process of lawyers discussing all the parameters of this attack. Doing that would’ve allowed our commander in chief to make a wise, informed decision. 

Immediately after the attacks, Iran promised to retaliate against the US. They terminated the 2015 nuclear agreement and launched missiles at Iraq bases with US soldiers. Not only that, but mass protests broke out in response to the general’s death, who was a beloved figure in the nation. Furthermore, after interviewing Mr. Cordiner, a former soldier in the Gulf war, it was clear that killing a General of this caliber has little to no effect. Regarding Soleimani, Mr. Cordiner claimed that, “He was immediately and quite (capable of being) replaced within days, if not hours. Iran has a robust officer training program where people are brought up through the ranks. Because their armed forces are divided into the army and Revolutionary Guards Corps, the religious/political hierarchy can play the two sides off of one another if one becomes too dominant.”

Essentially, Soleimani will be swiftly replaced in the next couple of years, and the US-Iran conflict will be no different than it was before. When asked if anything good will come out of this assassination, Mr. Cordiner replied that he should be “asked in five years.” It’s too soon to see if anything beneficial (or detrimental) arises from this decision. However, he doesn’t see anything “good coming from it.”

It’s clear that there are two sides to this controversial issue. Interestingly, Republicans, who are more loyal to Mr. Trump, stick by his decision to kill this leader. Other parties think he made a hasty decision in this process. It’s best that in situations like these, you use judgment that’s not dictated by political party or emotion. Sticking by the facts can help you make educated judgments. Soleimani was a very bad person who hurt the US and other countries in numerous ways. However, there are so many replacements that have the same capability of this General. We’ll have to see what happens in the near future to truly see the consequences of this assassination.