According to reports circulating widely in Israeli media today, the United States has quietly given Israel the green light to assassinate Iran’s top military officer, Iranian Revolutionary Guards al-Quds Force commander Maj. Gen. Qassem Soleimani. The leader of Iran’s most elite force also coordinates military activity between the Islamic Republic and Syria, Iraq, Hezbollah, and Hamas – a position he’s filled since 1998 – and as Quds Force commander reports directly to the Supreme Leader of Iran, Ali Khamenei, and oversees Iran’s covert operations in foreign countries.
Iran’s Revolutionary Guards have vowed to crack harshly down on protests currently gripping multiple major cities across the country, now in their fifth day, and after a particularly bloody night which saw 12 demonstrators killed – some of them reportedly shot by security forces.
The report, though unconfirmed, originated in a Kuwaiti newspaper and is now going viral through a Times of Israel story. The Times of Israel summarizes the context as follows:
Thursday’s report by al-Jarida, which has been known to publish improbable-sounding stories about Israel, was widely picked up by Israeli media. There was no immediate reaction to the report from Jerusalem or Washington.
Three years ago, Israel came close to assassinating Soleimani near Damascus, al-Jarida quoted unnamed source as saying, but the Americans tipped off the Iranians against the background of intense disagreement between Washington and…