Last week, the United States assassinated topmost Iranian military commander, General Qassem Soleimani, in a drone strike at his convoy at Baghdad International Airport. Iran has largely seen the killing of its revered military commander as an act of war. Though its retaliation is yet to be seen, it's widely expected that the West Asian nation will react, once the three-days national mourning, announced by Iranian supreme commander Ayatollah Khomeini, ends on Tuesday.
Bahrain could be Iran's target: George Galloway
According to the former Scottish politician, broadcaster and writer George Galloway, Iran could attack the tiny middle-eastern nation of Bahrain, in retaliation to the American assassination of its topmost commander, as reported by express.co.uk
Bahrain is a tiny nation with a mere 1.5 million population, located on the other side of the Persian Gulf, opposite Iran. According to Galloway, attacking Bahrain would indicate an attack on America, as well as Iran's arch rival-Saudi Arabia.
"It's my belief that the Iranian attack in response to the murder of General Soleimani will soon take place in Bahrain where an exceedingly target-rich environment exists.Where you have an overwhelming Shia minority population ruled over by a tiny and ridiculous comic opera, Gilbert and Sullivan Sunni monarchy, which only exists because across the causeway in Saudi Arabia it has limitless support, he said. "So if you attack Bahrain, you're also attacking Saudi Arabia", Galloway further added.
US Navy base in Bahrain
A United States Navy base is situated in Bahrain, which is the home of U.S. Naval Forces Central Command and United States Fifth Fleet. Currently, 7000 American troops are stationed in Bahrain. Bahrain has good relations with Saudi Arabia, while its relation with Iran has been under strain, on many occasions. In 2016, Bahrain severed diplomatic ties with Iran over Iranian influence in Saudi Arabian internal matters. Interestingly, both Iran and Bahrain are Shia majority countries in a region of Sunni-majority neighbors.
Meanwhile, United States has issued security alert to a number of its embassies, including the one in Bahrain. Interestingly, Bahraini flags featured in the funeral procession of the slain Iranian military commander Qassem Solaimani.