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World News

Iran accuses Trump of being responsible for Hamas attack in Israel on October 7

The October 7 attack by the militant group Hamas, which killed more than a thousand Israelis and led to continued fighting in Gaza, was in part a response to the U.S. assassination of Iranian General Qasem Soleimani, according to a spokesperson for Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC). ).

Soleimani was the commander of the Quds Force between 1998 and 2020, when he was killed by US forces in a drone strike near Baghdad International Airport in Iraq while he was scheduled to meet with the Iraqi Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi.

President Donald Trump, who ordered the assassination without informing key members of Congress, was called reckless by some, but defended his decision by calling Soleimani a “terrorist”, a term also used by the presidential candidate. presidential Joe Biden.

On October 7, Hamas carried out the deadliest Palestinian attack in history against Israel. Israel then launched its heaviest airstrikes against Gaza. At least 1,200 people were killed in Israel on Wednesday, the Associated Press reported, citing the Israeli government. More than 20,600 Palestinians have been killed in Gaza, about 70 percent of them women and children, according to Gaza’s health ministry, the AP said.

Honor guards carry the coffin of Razi Mousavi, a senior commander of the Quds Force of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), killed on December 25, 2023 in an Israeli strike in Syria, during his funeral procession to the Imam Ali shrine in the Iraqi holy city of Najaf on December 27. The IRGC said a 2020 US drone strike that killed Qasem Soleimani was part of the reason Hamas attacked Israel on October 7. Hamas denied this claim.
QASSEM AL-KAABI/AFP via Getty Images

Several reports published Wednesday cited a statement made by IRGC spokesperson Ramazan Sharif who linked Hamas’ Operation Al-Aqsa – the name of the October 7 mission – to Soleimani, calling it “the one of the revenges” of American murder.

Hamas has rejected Iran’s idea that Soleimani’s assassination was some kind of incitement to revenge.

“We deny what was transmitted by a spokesperson for the Revolutionary Guards regarding the operation and its motivations,” Hamas said in a statement. “We have repeatedly highlighted the reasons, the main one being the threats to the Al-Aqsa Mosque. Any response by the Palestinian resistance is a reaction to the occupation and aggression against the Palestinian people and the holy sites .”

News week contacted the Trump campaign, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) and the Pentagon via email for comment. The Pentagon declined to comment.

Israeli State Comptroller Matanyahu Englman said Wednesday his country was investigating everything leading up to the Oct. 7 attack.

“The nature of the massacre, its repercussions and the resulting failures to this day, as well as our moral and ethical duty towards the dead, the wounded, the kidnapped and the soldiers who risk their lives and fight to defend their homeland. ..require the state comptroller to scrutinize the personal accountability of all ranks – civilian, military and governmental,” Englman said, according to Haaretz.

Sharif also said the IRGC was “well aware” of why Israel killed IRGC adviser Sayyed Razi Mousavi in ​​an airstrike near the Syrian capital Damascus on Monday.

The IRGC remains convinced that Mousavi’s death, described as “an act of terrorism”, would not hinder its campaign “against the Zionist entity”, according to The time of Israel.

“We will respond accordingly, directly or indirectly through the axis of resistance,” Sharif said.

Gordon Gray, a Kuwaiti professor of Gulf and Arabian Peninsula affairs at George Washington University and U.S. ambassador to Tunisia from 2009 to 2012, worked in the region for much of his career.

“I doubt the IRGC’s purported claim that the drone strike that killed Soleimani motivated the Hamas attacks on October 7,” Gray said. News week by email on Wednesday. “Making this claim so long after the terrorist attacks undermines the credibility of this claim.”

The Israeli army has a dominant military advantage in the ongoing conflict in Gaza, he added. Long-term questions remain, however, including how the military side of the conflict will end and its global political implications.

“I don’t think there’s any question that Israel, like any other country, has the right to defend itself,” Gray said. “It is a concept enshrined in the United Nations charter.

“I believe that the terrorist attacks of October 7 provided justification for the Israeli military operations that followed, just as the attacks of September 11 provided justification for the US invasion of Afghanistan.”

Mousavi was reportedly described by Iranian state television as “among those who accompanied Qassem Soleimani.”

Israel “will certainly pay the price” for Mousavi’s death, Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi said in a statement, calling it “a sign of the frustration and weakness of the Zionist regime in the region.”

“I will not comment on the various actions we are taking,” IDF Chief of Staff Herzi Halevi told reporters near Gaza after Mousavi’s death, according to The Jerusalem Post. “The IDF works with other security organizations throughout the Middle East, within state borders, around state borders.

“We are taking all necessary steps to make it very clear that we are very committed to defending the country and that we are prepared to go far.”