TRUMP: Benghazi Mastermind Soleimani Should Have Died ‘Many Years Ago’

‘Iran never won a war, but never lost a negotiation…’

(Liberty Headlines) President Donald Trump said Friday that the targeted killing of Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani was ordered because he was “plotting to kill” many Americans.

According to some, including a tweet retweeted by Trump on Friday, Soleimani was responsible for—among other things—the 2012 attack on the US embassy in Benghazi, Libya.

Then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who would go on to be Trump’s Democratic rival in the 2016 campaign, drew considerable criticism for the failed response to that embassy attack, which resulted in the killing of four Americans, including Ambassador Chris Stevens.

Haunting images showed Stevens’ blue, lifeless body being dragged through the streets amid reports that he had been sexually assaulted and defiled.

Top Obama officials, including national security adviser Susan Rice and her communications deputy, Ben Rhodes, crafted a media narrative to deflect from the disastrous pre-election attack on Sept. 11 by claiming the uprising had been caused by a YouTube video.

In his first of many comments on the strike against the head of Iran’s elite Quds Force, Trump said Soleimani was also responsible for killing and wounding “thousands” of Americans and many more in the region.

“Iran never won a war, but never lost a negotiation,” Trump said in a series of tweets commenting on the strike, which happened late Thursday in the U.S. and early Friday in Iraq.

He followed up saying that the murderous Soleimani “should have been taken out many years ago!”

The strike, a retaliation after Iran-backed militias stormed the US embassy in Baghdad this week, may present a major escalation in the long-simmering conflict. Iran vowed “harsh retaliation” for the killing of the senior military leader.

The two nations have faced repeated crises since Trump withdrew from the controversial 2015 nuclear deal brokered by the Obama administration and instead reinstated the crippling sanctions that had long been effective in keeping the rogue Islamic republic at bay.

The Obama deal, negotiated in Geneva by then-Secretary of State John Kerry, unfroze billions in Iranian assets, which it used to sponsor terrorist attacks in the region against American allies including Israel and Saudi Arabia.

Moreover, Kerry’s deal failed to provide for any sort of verification or enforcement mechanisms in the event of Iran’s bad-faith violation of the terms.

Evidence shared by the Israeli intelligence community revealed that Iran had continued surreptitiously to develop its nuclear program under the nose of international watchdog agencies, while free from any serious consequences.

Nonetheless, the sanctions—which have proven effective in curbing Iranian influence and ambition in the region, resulting in a spate of popular uprisings against its fundamentalist regime—have caused it to lash out.

Trump previously called off an attack after Iran shot down a U.S. drone and attacked a British oil tanker in the Strait of Hormuz. It also launched a drone attack on a major Saudi Arabian oil field in September, causing alarm about the global energy supply.

After Thursday’s strike, the United States urged its citizens to leave Iraq “immediately” as fears mounted that any retaliation by Iran could ignite a conflict that engulfs the region.

Trump canceled a scheduled round of golf on Friday, and he was not expected to be seen publicly until he travels to Miami for an afternoon campaign rally.

Adapted from reporting by the Associated Press