Global Affairs

The case for taking out top Iranian general Qassem Soleimani

Whatever Trump's motives, the decapitation strike has removed the architect of a strategy that has destabilised the entire Middle East and cost the lives of hundreds of thousands of people

For the moment, an eerie silence reigns in the Middle East. By lobbing a few missiles at US installations in neighbouring Iraq, Iran appears to have exacted its revenge on the United States for the killing of Major-General Qassem Soleimani, its top military commander.

Iran's admission that it has accidentally shot down a civilian airliner may also act as a damper on future anti-American operations. And the US, for its part, has signalled its desire to avoid a tit-for-tat cycle of violence with Iran.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 13, 2020, with the headline 'The case for taking out Soleimani'. Print Edition | Subscribe