Iran is claiming responsibility for a missile barrage of as many as 12 missiles that hit near a U.S. consulate complex in northern Iraq on Sunday. Experts say the attack has greater ramifications for U.S.-Iranian ties and the pending Iranian nuclear agreement.
Iran's State Television claimed the missile strike targeted two Israeli "spy centers" in retaliation for an Israeli airstrike in Syria that killed two members of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps. “Once again we warn the criminal Zionist regime that repeating any evil acts will be followed by harsh, decisive, and destructive responses,” the announcer on Iranian State Television said.
Missiles from the attack on the Kurdish-run, semi-autonomous region struck the Kurdish K24 TV channel. No injuries were reported in Sunday's attack, but the Iraqi government condemned the incident as a "violation of international law and norms."
The attack represents an escalation in U.S.-Iranian tensions.
Former State Department official, Ellie Cohanim says the absence of a U.S. reaction seems to be related to the nuclear talks in Vienna. "The Iranians are striking against the U.S. again and again with zero reaction from the Biden administration. It's actually very worrying to see it unfold,” Cohanim told CBN News.
“What I am deducing from this pattern from the Biden administration is almost a cover-up for the Iranian regime's actions because they are so dead set on re-entering the JCPOA, 2015 Iran deal,” she said.
The Wall Street Journal reported the U.S. won’t agree to exempt Russia from Ukraine-related sanctions in order to save the deal. Russia has demanded that the sanctions the West has slapped on it for invading Ukraine not apply to its trade with Iran.
The revived deal would relieve sanctions against Iran, giving them billions of dollars that could be funneled to the terror groups that Iran has funded for decades. Three years from now, the deal would remove restrictions, which would allow Iran to legally become a threshold nuclear state.
Former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says the world is rushing to a nuclear agreement despite clear signs it’s a bad idea.
“The desperate rush to sign this flawed nuclear agreement with Iran is not only absurd, it’s downright dangerous. Yesterday Iran fired missiles in the vicinity of the American consulate in Iraq and the US continues to charge ahead along with the other powers to sign a nuclear agreement that will give the Ayatollahs a nuclear arsenal.,” Netanyahu tweeted.
“It will have enough enriched uranium to create dozens and dozens of nuclear bombs, and it will have the ICBMs to deliver them any place in the United States. That is unbelievable. It's not merely unacceptable, it endangers not only my country, Israel, but your country, the United States, and the entire world,” Netanyahu said.
“One thing history has shown us is that when genocidal dictators like Adolph Hitler, like the Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, when they say that they want to commit genocide against the Jews we need to believe them,” said Cohanim.
This week, Israelis and Jews around the world will celebrate the holiday of Purim from the biblical Book of Esther. It tells the story of ancient Persia (modern-day Iran) when Haman, a wicked advisor to King Ahasuerus, tried to kill all the Jewish people. Instead, the plot was overturned, and the Jewish people were saved.
“As an Iranian Jew, the story of Purim is a dear one to my heart,” said Cohanim. “There are many organizations that are encouraging Americans to contact their members of Congress against the Iran deal. And so all of the Esthers out there, please do what you can!”
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