The directed killing of Gen. Qassem Soleimani, Iran’s blood-soaked field marshal in the “forever war” of the Middle East, has begun to roil the politics of both the region and the USA. A stunned and shaken Iran retaliated by firing a dozen missiles at two U.S. bases in Iraq. Yet, before launching the attack, Iran signaled that its retaliation would be strictly proportionate, to avoid an escalation.
The immediate crisis appears to have passed in the wake of the January 3 U.S. surgical drone strike that took out Iran’s master terrorist, Gen. Ghasem Soleimani. Iran responded with predictable public bravado, along with an ineffective missile attack against military bases in Iraq that housed U.S. military personnel. Thankfully and wisely, President Trump chose to de-escalate the conflict, emphasizing that America had no desire for conflict with Iran.