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Multiple Rockets Fired Toward U.S. Embassy In Baghdad
Armed militiamen loyal to Yemen's fugitive President Abderabbo Mansour Hadi launch a rocket during reported clashes with Huthi rebels in the port city of Aden's Breiqa district, on April 25, 2015. The Saudi-led coalition has kept up air strikes days after announcing its campaign was entering a new phase aimed at resuming the political process, delivering aid and fighting "terrorism". The fighting has raised fears that Yemen could become a new front in a proxy war between Sunni-ruled Gulf monarchies and Shiite Iran.
SALEH AL-OBEIDI/AFP via Getty Images

Multiple rockets were fired toward the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad on Tuesday with reports indicating that at least two of the rockets hit inside Baghdad’s fortified Green Zone near the embassy.

“Sirens blasted from the U.S. embassy inside the zone, which houses government buildings and foreign missions,” Reuters reported. “One security source said at least four rockets were fired and some of them landed near the U.S. embassy.”

Fox News reporter Lucas Tomlinson tweeted: “Iraqi intelligence says at least 4 rockets fired at U.S. Embassy in Baghdad moments after U.S. acting defense secretary announces partial withdrawal of American forces from the country.”

The attack signaled the end of an “informal truce announced by Iran-backed militias in October,”
The Associated Press reported. “The rockets were fired from the al-Amin al-Thaniyah neighborhood of Baghdad.”

The development comes after The New York Times reported this week that if there were any attacks on U.S. forces in Iraq that U.S. officials could change their plans.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo “already drew up plans to close the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad over concerns of potential threats, although in recent days he appeared willing to leave that decision to the next administration,” the Times reported. “Mortar and rocket attacks against the embassy have waned over the past several weeks, and the task to shutter the largest American diplomatic mission in the world could take months to complete. But officials said that could change if any Americans are killed before Inauguration Day.”

The report mostly focused on President Donald Trump seeking options for Iranian targets that he could strike during the final two weeks of his administration, including the possibility of striking some of Iran’s nuclear possibilities.

A separate report from The Jerusalem Post this week noted that this is not the first time that a U.S. administration has considered launching strikes against Iran at the end of a presidential administration.

“In 2008, after the election that brought former US president Barack Obama to power, there were some officials in Israel who were confident that the previous president, George W. Bush, would not leave office with Iran’s nuclear facilities still standing. They were wrong. Iran’s nuclear facilities are not only still standing; they have grown in quality and quantity,” The Jerusalem Post reported. “This is important to keep in mind amid speculation – once again during a presidential lame duck period – that in his last few weeks in office, Donald Trump will either order U.S. military action against Iran or give Israel a green light, as well as some assistance, to do so on its own.”

Former national security adviser H.R. McMaster said in an interview with Fox News last week that he thought that there was a “possibility” that Israel could launch an attack against Iran before Democrat Joe Biden takes office.

“Israel follows the Begin doctrine which means that they will not accept a hostile state having the most destructive weapons on Earth,” McMaster said. “And we have seen this in the past with Israeli Defense Force strikes in Syria. Remember 2007, when North Korea was helping construct a nuclear weapons facility in the Syrian desert, and the Israeli Defense Force struck that, and also similar strikes in Iraq as well earlier than that. So I think that it’s a possibility.”

McMaster also warned against Biden trying to rejoin the Iran nuclear deal, saying that it would be “a really big mistake.”

“The Iran nuclear deal was a political disaster masquerading as a diplomatic triumph,” he said. “It was a fundamentally flawed agreement, but what it didn’t do, and it didn’t — it didn’t consider really two fundamental issues that we have to take into consideration when you’re dealing with Iran, first of all, the hostile ideology of the regime, the ideology of the revolution, and, secondly, this four-decade-long proxy war against us, and the big payoffs to Iran, when the deal was signed, as well as the relief of sanctions.”

“What did they do with that money?” he continued. “They applied that money to intensifying the sectarian violence across the region, in an effort really to put a proxy army on the border of Israel.”

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