Amidst the escalating tension between the United States and Iran, President Donald Trump, in a tweet late on Saturday night, stressed about the size and might of the US army that launched dedicated air strike at Baghdad International Airport killing top Iranian General Qassem Soleimani, leader of Iranian Quds Forces on Jan.1.
US defended the retaliation days after its Iraq-based embassy was attacked by Iranian militia on the New Year's eve. Apart from Suleimani, Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, senior commander in Iraq's Popular Mobilisation Units, also died in the air strike.
Trump says US won't hesitate to attack Iran
In a series of tweets at midnight, the US president boasted about the upgradation of its army's equipment: "The United States just spent Two Trillion Dollars on Military Equipment. We are the biggest and by far the BEST in the World!"
"If Iran attacks an American Base, or any American, we will be sending some of that brand new beautiful equipment their way...and without hesitation!" continued the President. Earlier, retweeting the post of Dan Crenshaw, Trump wrote: "They attacked us, & we hit back. If they attack again, which I would strongly advise them not to do, we will hit them harder than they have ever been hit before!"
On Sunday, the body of slain military commander Qassem Soleimani, was returned to Iran where mourners, dressed in black, carried the body in a long procession.
Trump continues to threaten Iran on social media
It is not for the first time that the US President has taken to social media to send strong messages to Iran. In a previous tweet on Saturday, he wrote: "Iran is talking very boldly about targeting certain USA assets as revenge for our ridding the world of their terrorist leader who had just killed an American, & badly wounded many others, not to mention all of the people he had killed over his lifetime, including recently hundreds of Iranian protesters."
"He was already attacking our Embassy, and preparing for additional hits in other locations. Iran has been nothing but problems for many years. Let this serve as a WARNING that if Iran strikes any Americans, or American assets, we have..... ....targeted 52 Iranian sites (representing the 52 American hostages taken by Iran many years ago), some at a very high level & important to Iran & the Iranian culture, and those targets, and Iran itself, WILL BE HIT VERY FAST AND VERY HARD. The USA wants no more threats!" he continued.
However, the tweet drew a sharp criticism from Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who was quick to term the said attack as a war crime. "Threatening to target and kill innocent families, women and children – which is what you're doing by targeting cultural sites – does not make you a tough guy. It does not make you 'strategic.' It makes you a monster," Ocasio-Cortez tweeted
Additional troops deployed by US
On Saturday, the US deployed 3,000 paratroopers from the 82nd Airborne Division to the region. It comes a day after General Gholamali Abuhamzeh spoke about launching an attack on '35' American targets.
"The Strait of Hormuz is a vital point for the West and a large number of American destroyers and warships cross there. Vital American targets in the region have been identified by Iran for a long time ago. Some 35 US targets in the region, as well as Tel Aviv, are within our reach," he said.
On Saturday evening an airborne attack was carried out by unclaimed forces after a rocket landed near the US embassy in Baghdad. No casualties were reported.