News   /   IN-DEPTH   /   Editor's Choice

Alleged Iran “assassination plot” coincides with Trump boasting of own plot

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Police snipers keep watch from the High Court building's roof. 18 September 2020. (AFP)

A plan to assassinate the ambassador of another country ought to be a well kept secret, hardly the type of news that you would expect from mainstream media. Yet in the case of the US ambassador to South Africa, this was the case. The publication Politico claimed Iran was looking into assassinating the US Ambassador to South Africa before the US elections in November.

US president Donald Trump has stepped up his anti-Iran rhetoric ahead of the November elections. Trump has cited false media reports on the so called “assassination plan” using it as a pretext to threaten Iran with an attack. In a twitter post on Tuesday, Trump threatened to launch an attack “1,000 times greater in magnitude” against Iran following unsubstantiated reports that Tehran was planning to kill an American diplomat.

An eye for an eyelash

A report published by Politico news magazine claims the plan was in retaliation for Washington’s assassination of top Iranian anti-terror commander Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani. The Politico report made the allegations citing unnamed US officials. It claimed Iran was planning to assassinate US Ambassador to South Africa, Lana Marks, before the American presidential election in November.

Another point that I think is relevant here in terms of the fact that this is just fake news is that Lana marks the ambassador to South Africa, who is supposedly the person who was potentially going to be assassinated by way of this plot.

She is simply not a valid or relevant target. If the IRGC or the Iranian government even was interested in further retaliation, a much more viable and relevant target would be someone like Michael D'Andrea, who was the head of the CIA anti Iran operations and likely was the mastermind of the assassination of General Soleimani.

David Yaghoubian, Professor of History, CSU San Bernardino

 Iran has dismissed the allegations as lies. Foreign Ministry spokesperson Saeid Khatibzadeh called on American officials to “stop resorting to hackneyed and outworn methods” to create an Iranophobic atmosphere in the international arena. 

As a responsible member of the international community, the Islamic Republic of Iran has demonstrated its constant commitment to international diplomatic principles and customs. Khatibzadeh further urged US journalists to beware of falling victim to US politicians' efforts "to peddle lies."

This report by Politico is clearly an example of fake news that has been generated by the Trump administration without evidence to do a few things one would be to appeal to its Zionist and evangelical Christian base because it can show that Trump is still being tough on Iran

It can be used as a propaganda tool to try to motivate members of the United Nations Security Council to work with the United States to try to extend the arms embargo, which is clearly not happening.

David Yaghoubian, Professor of History, CSU San Bernardino

Trump’s excellent timing

This report of the alleged Iranian assassination plot happened to have coincided with another development which reveals the true nature of both countries, namely the US and Iran. Of course, Iran has denied this assassination plot. Meanwhile, US President Donald Trump confirmed a plan was in the works to take out Syrian President Bashar Assad in 2017 and that he was supportive of it.

 That is just one of many instances of US assassination or targeted killings. The most notable instance, of course, is the assassination of the top Iranian General, Qassem Soleimani.

South African intelligence asserts there is a ˜discernible threat” by Iran, a plot to assassinate the US ambassador to South Africa. US intelligence agencies are reported to be of the same mind. Some analysts say that the news of the alleged plot is a ploy by US President Donald Trump to help him win re-election on 3 November.

US anti-Iran moves

The US assassinated Iran’s top General Qassem Soleimani, the commander of the Quds Force of Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps and his Iraqi trench-mate Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the deputy head of the Popular Mobilization Units near Baghdad airport in January this year. The assassinations were carried out upon Trump’s orders.

Tensions between Iran and the US have reached unprecedented levels ever since. Washington has ratcheted up pressure against Iran since it quit the Iran nuclear deal in 2018. The US has already tried to isolate Iran by re-imposing tough economic sanctions that were lifted as per the 2015 nuclear accord.

The latest US anti-Iran move includes absurd attempts by Trump’s secretary of state Mike Pompeo to trigger the snapback mechanism to restore UN sanctions on Iran. Trump’s threatening tweet and the false media reports it has relied on appear to be part of a plot concocted by Zionist elements in the US intelligence apparatus who work closely with the Israeli regime.

This is not the first time that American presidential administrations have drummed up an inane and fantastical narrative of a supposedly Iranian ambassadorial assassination plot. We had one in 2011 as the Obama administration was trying to exert maximum pressure on Iran, where the United States FBI claimed that an Iranian used car salesmen had been attempting to work with the Mexican drug cartel the Zetas to eventually assassinate the Saudi ambassador to the United States, it seems.

David Yaghoubian, Professor of History, CSU San Bernardino

The art of distraction

It seems the plot is about to thicken, with the intention to stir up trouble between Iran and the US before the US presidential election in November.

Any tension in the Middle East would boost President Trump’s reelection chance. It is also believed tensions between Washington and Tehran would benefit the Israeli regime. It has also been suggested that the purported plan is aimed at putting more pressure on Iran while the US is busy implementing its plans to reshape the geopolitics of the region in favor of Tel Aviv.

Press TV’s website can also be accessed at the following alternate addresses:

Press TV News Roku