Did Iran fire rockets at the US Embassy in Baghdad? Here's why Donald Trump threatened them to 'think it over'
On December 20, more than 20 rockets were launched at the Green Zone compound in Baghdad, where the US Embassy, as well as other official buildings, is situated
President Donald Trump, in a tweet on Wednesday, December 23, laid the blame on Iran for an alleged rocket attack on the US Embassy in Baghdad, Iraq, early this week. He also cautioned against any additional strikes. Warning Iran, he tweeted: “Our embassy in Baghdad got hit Sunday by several rockets. Three rockets failed to launch. Guess where they were from: IRAN. Now we hear chatter of additional attacks against Americans in Iraq...”. He posted this with a photo of three rockets. Trump also added, “...Some friendly health advice to Iran: If one American is killed, I will hold Iran responsible. Think it over.”
...Some friendly health advice to Iran: If one American is killed, I will hold Iran responsible. Think it over.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 23, 2020
However, the president did not provide any additional details linking Iran to the attack. As reported by CNBC, on Sunday, December 20, more than 20 rockets were launched at Green Zone compound in Baghdad, where the US Embassy, as well as other official buildings, is situated. There were no American injuries or casualties reported from the incident, however, some of the buildings situated there did report some damage.
A spokesman for US Central Command, which manages the wars in Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan, wrote that December 20 rocket attack “was almost certainly conducted by an Iranian-backed Rogue Militia Group.” US Navy Capt. Bill Urban, a spokesman for US Central Command, wrote in a statement, “It is important for the people of Iraq to understand that past attacks by the Iranian-backed Rogue Militia Groups have killed more Iraqi civilians and members of the Iraqi Security Forces than they have killed Americans.” Urban added, “The United States will hold Iran accountable for the deaths of any Americans that result from the work of these Iranian-backed Rogue Militia Groups.”
The Hill reported that US Central Command head Gen. Frank McKenzie said it was unclear if the attack, which included missiles believed to have been allegedly supplied by Iran, was planned by Tehran or an Iran-linked force. No group has yet claimed responsibility. “I do not know the degree to which Iran is complicit,” McKenzie told the Wall Street Journal, as stated in The Hill. “We do not seek a war, and I don’t actually believe they seek one either.”
In a statement, on December 20, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said, “The United States strongly condemns the latest attack by Iran-backed militias on the International Zone in Baghdad. While no Embassy personnel were harmed, the attack caused at least one Iraqi civilian casualty and damaged Iraqi civilian property. We wish those hurt a speedy recovery.” He added, “As Iraq struggles with COVID-19 and an increasingly dire economic crisis, Iran-backed militias are the most serious impediment to helping Iraq return to peace and prosperity. The same militias targeting diplomatic facilities are stealing Iraqi state resources on a massive scale, attacking peaceful protesters and activists, and engaging in sectarian violence. We call on all Iraqis to support their government’s efforts to reinforce Iraq’s sovereignty, to bring to justice those responsible for these reprehensible attacks and ensure that all the currently Iran-backed militias are under state control.”
The Denver Channel reported, Saeed Khatibzadeh, a spokesperson for Iran’s foreign ministry, claiming on Monday, December 21, that the US was responsible for increasing tensions following the December 20 attack. “We strongly refute Secretary (Mike) Pompeo 's irresponsible anti-Iran accusations, which blatantly aim to create tension,” Khatibzadeh tweeted. “Iran rejects any attack on diplomatic missions. The US military presence is the source of instability in our region. No amount of spin can divert blame for its evils.”
We strongly refute @SecPompeo's irresponsible anti-#Iran accusations, which blatantly aim to create tension.— Saeed Khatibzadeh (@SKhatibzadeh) December 21, 2020
Iran rejects any attack on diplomatic missions.
The U.S. military presence is the source of instability in our region. No amount of spin can divert blame for its evils.
As stated in The Hill, the attack comes closer to the one-year anniversary of the US-ordered drone strike that killed Gen Qassem Soleimani, the commander of Iran’s elite Quds Force. Soleimani and several other Iranian military officials were killed on January 3, 2020, while traveling to the Baghdad airport. Tehran had responded by launching a missile attack on an Iraqi airbase housing US troops, causing more than 100 US service members to suffer traumatic brain injuries.
These remarks were made by the internet and individual organizations, MEAWW cannot confirm them independently and nor does it support these claims being made on the Internet.