Trump puts Iran on notice: US will hit 52 targets if it strikes us again, one for every 1979 embassy hostage and and
President Trump, Released Iranian hostages, Ayatollah Khamenei … Credits: The Sun, USAF, Ruptly

On Saturday, President Trump warned Iran in no uncertain terms that there are plans to attack 52 important targets that “WILL BE HIT VERY FAST AND VERY HARD … if Iran strikes any Americans, or American assets.”

The number 52 is meaningful and hearkens back to the point in history that Iran and the U.S. ended a long, cooperative diplomatic relationship, when 52 Americans were held hostage for 444 days after the US Embassy in Tehran was stormed on Nov. 4, 1979.

In his series of tweets outlining his implicit warning to the Iranian regime, Trump plainly connected that Jimmy Carter-era event to what his administration would do today if necessary.

It is so good to have a Commander in Chief who knows how to wield the proverbial “big stick” that Teddy Roosevelt left in the White House closet.

There is no doubt that Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, his generals, and the terror groups they support have gotten the message that the current White House resident is not one to be underestimated such as prior pushover Presidents Barack Obama or Jimmy Carter.

Trump’s warning likely is in direct response to threats of retaliation for the killing of Qasem Soleimani. Senior Revolutionary Guards General Gholamali Abuhamze, according to Tasnim News Agency and reported by Reuters, said that Iran will punish Americans wherever they are within reach of the Islamic Republic. “The Strait of Hormuz is a vital point for the West and a large number of American destroyers and warships cross there,” he said, “… vital American targets in the region have been identified by Iran since a long time ago … some 35 U.S. targets in the region, as well as Tel Aviv, are within our reach.”

“Harsh retaliation is waiting for the criminals whose filthy hands spilled his blood,” Khamenei said, according to Fox News.

The Ayatollah also announced a three-day period of national mourning for Soleimani. He tweeted a promise of retaliation, saying “The loss of our dear General is bitter. The continuing fight & ultimate victory will be more bitter for the murderers & criminals.”

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani vowed to “take revenge for this heinous crime.”

Iranian-backed militias in Iraq, known as the Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF), have also threatened vengeance on Americans and U.S. interests. Abu Mahdi al-Mohandas, the deputy head of the PMF, was killed in the drone strike that killed Soleimani. “[We] will not wait to be targeted in this country or others, we will not wait for the Iraqi government to take retaliation for this killing,” said Hashim Ahmed, a member of the PMF Islamic Resistance. “The resistance will respond very soon by attacking U.S. presence by missiles.”

A war of words is preferable to a kinetic escalation, but Trump declared in his concluding tweet that “The USA wants no more threats!”

The ball is in the hands of the Iranians.


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