Iran is one of several countries where a war could erupt at any time…
It wouldn’t be logical. It would be ideological and religious.
Here are 15 things every Christian should know. Be sure to read #14 about the church in Iran.
1. General Qassem Soleimani killed by a targeted military strike because he was a terrorist mastermind.
He was also the commander of the Iranian Quds Force … a small elite expeditionary unit – estimated to have from 3,000 to 15,000 fighters. It is a part of the larger Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC).
But Soleimani wasn’t just a small-unit army commander…
Through his own terrorist activities – and his contracting of proxy militias from other countries with Shiite populations – he was directly or indirectly responsible for killing more than 600 U.S. servicemen in Iraq … wounding thousands … as well as massive terrorist killings of Syrians, Iraqis … and even Iranian officers.
The U.S. attack on General Soleimani was to stop more terrorism.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said during a CNN interview, “We want the world to understand that there was, in fact, an imminent attack taking place. The American people should know that this was an intelligence-based assessment that drove this.”
2. Gen. Soleimani was the key to implementing the so-called Iran nuclear deal – the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).
The Iran nuclear deal was former President Obama’s crowning foreign policy achievement.
Obama admired Gen. Soleimani and counted on him to “control the ground” in Syria and help the U.S. stabilize the region.
The $1.7 billion in cash that the U.S. shipped to Iran went directly to the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) … and to Gen. Soleimani.
3. What happened? Here is the timeline of events that led up to the drone strike that killed Gen. Soleimani.
- On December 27th, a barrage of 31 rocket missiles were fired at a joint U.S.-Iraqi base near the northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk. Nine of the rockets exploded on the base, wounding 3 U.S. soldiers and 2 Iraqi federal police … and killing an American civilian contract interpreter.
- The rocket attack was blamed on Hezbollah, a militia group that receives funding from Gen. Qassem Soleimani through the IRGC and the Quds Force.
- Two days later, American F-15 fighter jets dropped bombs on 5 militia sites in Syria and Iraq.
- Two days after the F-15 retaliatory attack, thousands of militia supporters swarmed the U.S. embassy in Baghdad, throwing Molotov cocktails and breaching and setting fire to one of the compound’s secure reception areas.
- U.S. military leaders immediately sent about 100 Marines to Baghdad … and another 750 troops to Kuwait on standby status.
- Senior national security advisers met President Trump in Florida and informed him that intelligence sources had discovered Gen. Soleimani was going to be coming to Baghdad. The officials reminded the president that after the Iranians had mined ships, shot down a U.S. drone and attacked a Saudi oil facility, he had not responded.
- After several days of deliberation and debate, President Trump gave the authorization to carry out the drone attack at the Baghdad airport.
- In retaliation, Iran launched 15 missiles targeted at two military bases which house U.S. troops. Ten missiles struck the Ain al-Asad Air Base, one missile hit a U.S. military base in Kurdish territory, three missiles missed their targets … and one missile destroyed a Ukrainian commercial jetliner, killing all 176 people on board.
4. U.S. spy satellites detected the missile liftoffs and calculated where they would land, enabling our troops to be moved into protected positions.
No U.S. personnel were killed during the rocket attack…
The U.S. and Iran were communicating through Switzerland. Also, Iran was telling Iraq what they were going to do … and Iraq was passing the information on to the U.S.
The two bases that were attacked were chosen because they were the bases responsible for the drone strike that killed Gen. Soleimani.
5. The biased media and socialist-Democrat politicians immediately attacked President Trump for eliminating Gen. Soleimani.
They described President Trump as:
- A warmonger
- An assassin
- An aggressor
- A madman
- Crazy and Unhinged
They also blamed the president for the shooting down of the Ukrainian commercial jetliner … saying that it wouldn’t have happened if Gen. Soleimani hadn’t been killed.
That’s like claiming Iran would stop hating the U.S. and chanting “Death to America!” if the Trump administration would simply support the dictatorial Iranian government.
6. President Trump blasted the flawed and failed “Iran nuclear deal” negotiated by President Obama and his Secretary of State, John Kerry.
During his address to the nation about the Iranian crisis, President Trump said, “The missiles fired last night at us and our allies were paid for with funds made available by the last administration.”
He was referring to the $1.7 billion in cash that was sent to Iran by the Obama administration in 2016 in exchange for the release of 4 American prisoners.
Since the takeover of the U.S. embassy in Tehran on November 4, 1979 – and the subsequent holding of 52 American diplomats and citizens hostage for 444 days – 6 different U.S. presidential administrations have carried out a policy of appeasement toward the dictatorial, theocratic Iranian regime.
This appeasement has turned Iran into a regional power in the Middle East.
We are now suffering the consequences of our own flawed appeasement-driven foreign policy.
7. The Iranian government has put out an $80 million contract for the assassination of President Trump.
It’s not surprising that Iran’s leaders want President Trump removed because he insists on putting the interests of the U.S. ahead of the interests of other countries in nuclear arms treaties and in trade negotiations.
But some fear that the Deep State will attempt to assassinate the president and blame the Iranians due to the contract.
8. Iran funds and controls Syrian, Palestinian and Lebanese forces and terrorists in addition to its own Iran Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC).
These “proxy militias” could spread greater terrorism and revenge against the U.S. than the IRGC would be capable of by acting alone.
Hezbollah – meaning “Party of God” – with headquarters in Lebanon, has promised that the Iranian missile attack is only the beginning of Iran’s retaliation for the assassination of Gen. Soleimani.
9. The U.S. military is stronger today than it has been in the recent past.
Most Americans are not aware that during the Obama administration, radical changes were imposed on military culture and on rules of engagement that negatively impacted our combat readiness and made the U.S. less secure.
Some of those changes included:
- Establishing “safe spaces” in combat zones
- Prohibiting so-called “micro-aggressions”
- Denigrating “hyper-masculine” traits
- Implementing “green” standards
- Adding “social justice” guidelines into military operations
These and other manifestations of identity politics and progressive rhetoric are detailed in the book, Stand Down: How Social Justice Warriors Are Sabotaging America’s Military, by former Army Captain and Army Ranger James Hasson.
President Trump has expended great effort and funds to reverse the debilitating changes made during the Obama administration … and to rebuild our military forces and our combat readiness.
10. The people of Iran are ready to revolt against their government and its leaders.
The Iranian economy is in shambles and is falling apart…
Unemployment is 40% among young people in the 15 to 29 age group…
And the government’s admission – after repeated denials – that it mistakenly shot down a Ukrainian passenger jet – killing 176 innocent civilians – has sparked days of anti-government protests in Tehran.
Many are calling for the resignation of Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.
11. Iran is a very dangerous place.
It is still the number 1 exporter of terrorism in the Middle East and around the world.
Iran is especially dangerous for Christians since Christianity is outlawed … and Christian churches are banned.
Some geopolitical analysts believe Iran already has electromagnetic pulse (EMP) weapons which could be devastating to U.S. military bases and troop movements in the Middle East and in nearby countries.
Nuclear war with Iran could happen in the future.
12. President Trump shocked Iran – and the world – with his bold elimination of one of the world’s worst terrorists.
His action put Iran … North Korea … China … and every other country that opposes the U.S. on notice – don’t mess with this president…
This is called “deterrence.”
Iran is now in fear…
They know we can destroy their oil fields … their electric grid … their weapon systems and more in a matter of hours.
They backed down.
13. President Trump is being attacked for not seeking approval from Congress for the mission to take out Gen. Soleimani.
It is unlikely Congress would have given the approval for any attack on any terrorist – and even if it had, some of the members most likely would have tipped off the Iranians in an attempt to cause the mission to fail.
Although Congress has the sole right to “declare war,” the War Powers Resolution of 1973 gives the president the authority to initiate and carry out unilateral military action provided the following two stipulations are met:
- He must inform Congress of the military action within 48 hours.
- The military action cannot exceed 90 days without congressional approval.
Those who oppose President Trump’s unilateral drone attack seem to forget that his predecessor Barack Obama carried out 563 drone attacks during his two terms in office … and initiated unilateral military action in at least 7 countries:
14. While political tensions mount in Iran, tremendous evangelism and church growth is taking place there.
A church worker in Iran recently told CBN News, “More people have come to faith in Christ in Iran in the last 40 years than in the previous 1,400 years.”
After the de-escalation of tensions which resulted from President Trump’s announcement following Iran’s retaliatory rocket attack, Justin Murff, Executive Director of the MENA Collective – a ministry dedicated to supporting Christian communities throughout the Middle East-North Africa (MENA) region – said this:
“Iran is home to one of the fastest growing Christian churches in the world, and the decision for peace means that the rapidly growing church will continue to grow.”
A secret Christian believer in Iran estimates that the number of Christians in the country has increased from about 100,000 in 1994 to over 3 million today.
If you count the number of Christians who have fled the country, the number is even higher…
Because traditional Christian churches are banned in Iran – and because Christian persecution by the government is severe – many Christians have fled to Turkey and other countries that are more tolerant of religious minorities.
Most Christians who remain in the country use the Internet to connect to churches outside Iran.
They use Skype to attend churches in the U.S., Germany, Canada … and even Malaysia.
15. For Christians who would like to pray for Iran, the Middle East-North Africa (MENA) Collective offers a free prayer guide.
The MENA Collective supports more than 150 nonprofit organizations serving Christian communities and sharing the gospel in 22 countries of the Middle East and North Africa.
You can learn more about the MENA Collective … and download the prayer guide here.
Check out the history of the organization … its mission statement … and contact information by clicking on the Menu button in the upper right corner of the home page.
Watch this 3-minute video news report about the protests in Tehran over the shooting down of the Ukrainian jetliner.
What do you think? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.