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Tensions Rise Between United States, Iran

By Semira Robinson, Staff Reporter

Photo Courtesy of The White House

The ongoing conflict between the United States and Iran has reached new heights, beginning earlier this month. Amidst the impeachment trial, a drone struck the Baghdad International Airport, which killed the Iranian major general of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps. Given that Congress did not approve this strike, many assume that Trump directly ordered the attack. 

As a leader for over 20 years, Qasem Soleimani was an exceptional figurehead in his community and was granted some of the highest respects, many even viewed him as a demigod. It was declared by government officials that three days of mourning would follow his death before his funeral on Jan. 6, 2020.

Almost tauntingly, Trump posted a picture of the United States flag following the death Soleimani. Before Soleimani’s funeral with millions of people in attendance, the supreme leader of Iran, Ali Khamenei responded promisingly to Trump’s bold statements, both to the press and on Twitter.

His vow of a “Severe Revenge” sparked fear, anger and anxiety among many civilians on both sides of the brewing conflict. Khamenei made it clear that his targets are exclusively Trump and affiliated U.S. government officials. However, many noted that a war between the two would result in expenses including the need for more soldiers at the military base in Iran, risk of jeopardizing foreign affairs with other countries, increased national debt for military equipment and more. Not long after Solemani’s death Iran ended the nuclear deal commitment previously in place.

While waiting for retaliation or revenge from Iran, Trump has ordered for “new powerful sanctions on Iran.” The rest of the United States had mixed responses from both Democratic and Republican parties. The Trump Administration did not consult nor receive approval from Congress to strike the Baghdad International Airport. To escalate matters even further, Trump proceeded to announce via Twitter that his excessive spending for the military on behalf of the United States was essentially to prove America’s superiority.

On Saturday, Jan. 25,  the A.N.S.W.E.R. (Act Now to Stop War and End Racism) Coalition led an Anti-War protest against the conflict. Meeting outside the White House, many gathered to speak on the causes, effects, perspectives and possible solutions of this matter before marching over to George Washington University. There the protesters had the opportunity to get an insight from fellow anti-imperialist and Iranian-American citizens. 

An increasing amount of Iranian-Americans are being stopped at international entries of the United States. The American Civil Liberties Union expressed the perspective of these people and analyzed accurately through in a statement.

“This administration continuously espouses anti-immigrant rhetoric and follows up with unconscionable abuses — the Muslim ban, family separation, the inhumane detention of children, and many more. It has upended many immigrants’ lives through denaturalization and rescinding Temporary Protected Status, as well,” reads the statement. 

Most recently, an attack on the US Embassy in Baghdad was reported on Jan. 26, 2020. Three mortar fire rockets were fired in that region and although there were no reports of injuries, the dining hall was hit directly. Iraq did not take accountability and condemned the actions, making some turn their heads in assumption suspicion that Iran was behind the attack.