Iran’s days of rage on Soleimani’s birthday have their limits


Iran sends a “harsh” message …

This week, Iran commemorated the second anniversary of the January 3 US drone strike that killed the commander of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) and the commander of the Quds force. Qassem Soleimani and Abu Mahdi al Muhandis, Deputy Commander of the Iraqi Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF), in Baghdad, with speeches, threats and rockets targeting US bases in Iraq.

  • Gen. Esmail Ghaani, Soleimani’s replacement, vowed retaliation, saying “We will take revenge that you will not forget for the rest of your life.”

  • Iranian-backed forces in Iraq and Syria attacked facilities housing US-led international coalition forces against Islamic State, such as Shelly kittleson and Jared szuba report.

  • An Iraqi PMF commander said Ali Hashem that these attacks are intended to send “a harsh message to Americans while ensuring that no drop of blood is shed”, and also to provide a “show of power” in the Iranian nuclear talks taking place in Vienna.

  • In Gaza, Mahmoud al Zahar, a member of the Hamas political bureau, at the ceremony to commemorate Soleimani, said that the IRGC commander “was the first to fund the resistance government formed after the 2006 elections to pay the salaries of its employees, to help poor families and support resistance programs ”, Mai Abu Hassaneen reports.

  • Good to know: American Mission in Iraq: There are approximately 2,500 American troops in Iraq and 900 in Syria. As of January 1, US troops no longer participate in a combat mission in Iraq and will now focus on training, advice, assistance and intelligence sharing. The passage “has no impact on operations against ISIS or logistics in Syria. “

… while “small progress” in the nuclear talks

Iran’s days of rage do not extend to the Iranian nuclear talks taking place in Vienna.

French Minister of Foreign Affairs Jean-Yves Le Drian said on January 7 that he remained “convinced” that a deal could still be reached and that “progress has been made in recent days”.

Earlier this week, the spokesperson for the US State Department Ned Prize noted: “There has been progress since the beginning of December in identifying the difficult issues that remain to be negotiated,” as we report here.

… and Israel is considering an Iran nuclear deal

In a “complete about-face”, reports Ben caspit, Israel now believes that the world powers and Iran will agree on a new nuclear deal this year.

And Israel can live with that, a senior Israeli security official told Caspit, given the close collaboration between Washington and Jerusalem.

  • “The Americans fully understand our concerns and tell us that if the Iranians rush into nuclear capability after the deal expires, they will be treated aggressively,” the official said.

  • The United States “will strengthen and improve our military advantage in the region and they have promised that if Iran succeeds with a nuclear breakthrough at any point, they will block it with any means at their disposal.”

  • In the meantime, Israel will push for an extension of the sunset clauses, which end restrictions on Iran’s nuclear program in 2025 and 2030, which Israel has consistently viewed as the biggest flaw in the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action ( JCPOA).

  • Israel is pushing for an aggressive implementation of “snap sanctions,” meaning that if Iran violates the agreement, the United States will trigger a mechanism to reimpose sanctions on Iran, Barak Ravid Axios reports.

  • “We can expect that if an agreement is reached, it will be accompanied by a major American package for Israel and its allies in the Middle East,” concludes Caspit. “The deal with Iran may include additional clauses that improve it – or not. Either way, Israel seems to have accepted the fact that it has no chance to turn the tide of history. “

Good to know: Iran nuclear deal

  • Link to the JCPOA and United Nations Security Council resolution 2231 (2025) here.

  • The heart of the deal is the easing of economic sanctions for Iran in return for Iran complying with the constraints of its nuclear program, imposed by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), to ensure that Iran does not acquire nuclear weapons.

  • the Asset The administration withdrew from the JCPOA in May 2018, so the US delegation is not “in the room” during the ongoing nuclear talks in Vienna.

  • The other parties to the JCPOA are Iran, China, France, Germany, the Russian Federation, the United States and the European Union.

  • The IAEA reported in August 2021 that Iran was enriching 60% uranium, well above the JCPOA’s 3.67% cap. 90 percent purity HEU is required for nuclear weapons. In September, the IAEA said Iran’s restrictions on access to its facilities seriously undermined the agency’s oversight.

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