President Trump has tweeted and looks like he has confirmed the airstrike:
At the direction of the President, the U.S. military has taken decisive defensive action to protect U.S. personnel abroad by killing Qasem Soleimani, the head of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps-Quds Force, a U.S.-designated Foreign Terrorist Organization.
General Soleimani was actively developing plans to attack American diplomats and service members in Iraq and throughout the region. General Soleimani and his Quds Force were responsible for the deaths of hundreds of American and coalition service members and the wounding of thousands more. He had orchestrated attacks on coalition bases in Iraq over the last several months - including the attack on December 27th - culminating in the death and wounding of additional American and Iraqi personnel. General Soleimani also approved the attacks on the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad that took place this week.
This strike was aimed at deterring future Iranian attack plans. The United States will continue to take all necessary action to protect our people and our interests wherever they are around the world.
A fellow at the Brookings Institution has stated that this is bigger than the Osama Bin Laden kill:
Obama took Suleimani off the sanctions list as part of the nuclear deal.— Drew McCoy (@_Drew_McCoy_) January 3, 2020
Trump took him off the face of the planet.
The wisdom of the various approaches are tbd but the differences could not be more stark.
Make no mistake - this is bigger than taking out Osama Bin Laden.— Ranj Alaaldin (@RanjAlaaldin) January 3, 2020
At least three rockets were fired at Baghdad International Airport Friday killing at least seven people, including Iranian Gen. Qassim Soleimani, the head of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps' elite Quds Force, according to multiple reports early Friday.
Soleimani is the military mastermind whom Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had deemed equally as dangerous as Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who was killed in a strike by U.S.-led forces in October.
“Soleimani is our leader,” written under window by Iran-backed militiamen pic.twitter.com/o6CjW08VSi— Lucas Tomlinson (@LucasFoxNews) January 2, 2020
Soleimani was the long-running leader of the elite intelligence wing called Quds Force – which itself has been a designated terror group since 2007, and is estimated to be 20,000 strong. Considered one of the most powerful men in Iran, he was routinely referred to as the “shadow commander” or “spymaster.”
The strike also killed Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the deputy commander of Iran-backed militias known as the Popular Mobilization Forces, three Iraqi officials told The Associated Press. Iraqi TV reported the deaths as well.
President Trump has promised not to have this turn into the next economy and has promised that Iran will pay for their actions.
Rockets Strike #Iraq's #BaghdadAirport, #USMilitary Choppers Spotted in Airspace. Three rockets landed on the edge of #Baghdad International Airport , causing explosions but no deaths or injuries, according to local reporters.#IraqiProtests pic.twitter.com/fdEFmkTxpq— Ehab Al Obaidy (@Ehab8Alobaidy) January 2, 2020