US Now Views Iran’s Qassem Soleimani As “Equivalent” To ISIS Leader: Pompeo

During remarks early this week in a Fox News interview following Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) being formally designated by the United States as a foreign terrorist organization, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo confirmed that the US will view Iran’s elite force just as it does ISIS

Specifically Pompeo agreed that the commander of Iran’s elite Quds Force, Maj Gen Qassem Soleimani, is a “terrorist” on the level of ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi during a Fox News interview on Monday. Via the AFP: Mike Pompeo said Maj Gen Qassem Suleimani, centre, will now be treated like fugitive ISIS leader Abu Bakr Al Baghdadi.

Fox’s Bret Baier posed the question to the Secretary of StateThe head of the IRGC, this man Qasem Soleimani, is by all accounts a bad character and has led all kinds of attacks. But are you saying that he now is equated to, let’s say, the head of ISIS, al-Baghdadi, in U.S. policy perspective?

Responding to whether Suleimani is now “equated” to notorious “caliphate head” Baghdadi, Pompeo affirmed, “Yeah. He is a terrorist.”

This introduced the next obvious question which has no doubt been on the minds of Pentagon planners since the designation was announced: will the US military now target Soleimani and other IRGC commanders the way it does ISIS, with airstrikes and targeted assassination and/or invasion of territory held? 

Baier asked: “So we as a country have a policy to target him or capture him?”

Pompeo explained, “Qassem Soleimani has the blood of Americans on his hands, as do the forces he leads,” according to the State Dept. read out of the interview.

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