21:05 GMT25 January 2020
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    The head of the elite Iranian Quds Force was eliminated in the early hours of Friday by the US military, which specially stepped up its presence in Iraq after the American Embassy siege in Baghdad over New Year.

    Some of the top trending tweets in the US feature an address, not to a person, but to a country - “Dear Iran”.

    The requests and comments aimed at the Islamic Republic, whose prominent military commander Qasem Soleimani was killed in a US airstrike in Baghdad, varied greatly. Some expressed their sorrow at Soleimani’s death, while at the same time begging Iran not to kick-start “this WWIII”.

    “I don't know America. I don't know Donald Trump. I never heard of her. I'm not a part of this", one posted, reserving a bit of room for irony as he distanced himself from the news, whereas many opted to blame the Republicans over the move to eliminate Quds Force’s head.

    A number of netizens tried to lighten up the mood a bit, apparently to disguise the depression:

    Even members of the Mexican community weighed in on the debate, cheekily remarking that the latest development would make them leave their adoptive country for their native one:

    Memes arrived in abundance as well, with many continuing to play upon the WWIII speculation:

    Others, meanwhile, hit back at the “stupid” addresses, arguing that America had finally “stood up”, as POTUS is “not the Muslim Obama” and calling out actress Rose McGowan for her apology to Iran as “US’ disrespect":

    “No reasonable person should want Soleimani alive...especially anyone who has had their family terrorized by this regime. But the question that should be asked Sen @tedcruz was this operation in the best interests of the USG?” a different netizen posted, arguing that “the idea that this is a deterrent is patently absurd”.

    The Pentagon confirmed earlier in the day that Commander of the Quds Force of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Maj. Gen. Qasem Soleimani was killed by rocket fire near Baghdad International Airport. The IRGC’s Quds Force is designated by Washington as a foreign terrorist organisation.

    Soleimani was murdered while in his car at Baghdad Airport after US forces repelled a raid on the US Embassy in the Iraqi capital on 31 December that the Pentagon said Soleimani was behind. Separately, the Department of Defence noted that he had previously orchestrated other attacks, including fatal ones, on coalition bases in Iraq.

    Related:

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    Tags:
    IRGC, Quds Force, commander, Qasem Soleimani, Iraq, Iran
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