U.S. Gen. Kenneth McKenzie, head of Central Command, told reporters on Sunday that the U.S. is “prepared to react” should Iran launch an attack on the first anniversary of the killing of Islamic Revolutionary Guard leader Gen. Qassem Soleimani.
“We are prepared to defend ourselves, our friends and partners in the region, and we’re prepared to react if necessary,” Gen. McKenzie told reporters.
McKenzie, who has been touring the Mideast recently, referred to the death of the Soleimani at the hands of the U.S. in a targeted drone strike on Jan. 3, 2020.
“He was the commander directly responsible for organizing and directing multiple attacks against Americans in the region, including [Kataeb Hezbollah] attacks we’ve seen over the last several months,” a Defense Department senior official said at the time.
Iran has repeatedly sworn to take revenge for the killing, promising regional “resistance” and the ouster of U.S. forces from the region.
However, McKenzie said, “My assessment is we are in a very good position and we’ll be prepared for anything the Iranians or their proxies acting for them might choose to do.”
On Sunday night, the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad reported a rocket attack at its facilities. Eight rockets were launched by an “outlawed group” in the words of an Iraqi military statement. One Iraqi security person was hurt and an empty residential building was damaged.
“As we have said many times, these sorts of attacks on diplomatic facilities are a violation of international law and are a direct assault on the sovereignty of the Iraqi government,” the embassy said.
It is not known if the attack was coordinated to coincide with McKenzie’s visit.
Visiting Israel around the same time was Chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Mark A. Milley.
Over the course of his visit, he met with IDF Chief-of-Staff, Lt. Gen. Aviv Kohavi, and participated in several military events, all with the goal of strengthening the partnership and the cooperation between the U.S. and Israeli militaries.
Source » worldisraelnews