Soleimani's Daughter Says Defeated, Isolated Trump Will Live In Fear Of Foes
In the minutes after Joe Biden was sworn in Wednesday just before 5pm GMT, noon in Washington, Zeinab Soleimani’s thoughts were not with the new United States president but with the outgoing one. The 29-year-old daughter of Iran’s slain Qods Force Commander Qasem Soleimani declared that Donald Trump would live “in fear of foes.”
“Mr. Trump, you murdered my father, the General who led the victorious war against ISIS/Al-Qaeda, with the perverse hope that you will be seen as some sort of hero,” she wrote in her tweet at 6.43pm GMT. “But instead you are defeated, isolated and broken - viewed not as a hero, but one who lives in fear of foes. The irony.”
Zeinab Soleimani’s tweet was retweeted 1,200 times by Thursday morning. Among those retweeting was Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif. “Trump, Pompeo and Co. are relegated to the dustbin of history in disgrace,” Zarif wrote in his own tweet on Wednesday. “Perhaps new folks in [Washington] DC have learned.”
Soleimani - the commander of Iran’s extraterritorial Quds Force, which co-ordinated Iran’s allies and military proxies in Iraq, Lebanon, Yemen, and Syria - was killed by a US drone near Baghdad airport on January 3, 2020 in a missile attack that Trump announced he had ordered. The strike, which killed nine other than Soleimani, was deemed unlawful killing by the United Nations Special Rapporteur Agnes Callamard in June 2020, and Iran launched international legal action in January 2020.
During Soleimani’s lifetime, his family stayed away from the spotlight even with the commander’s public profile organizing forces in Iraq fighting Isis, the Islamic State group. But his daughter Zeinab Soleimani was prominent in funeral ceremonies, including a ten-minute speech in Tehran. A frequent visitor to Lebanon, following her father’s death she last summer married Reza Saffiedin, son of a prominent Hezbollah official, and has continued to speak publicly.
In retaliation for Soleimani’s killing, Iran on January 8 hit two military bases in Iraq hosting US troops with over a dozen ballistic missiles, leaving around 100 American troops with traumatic brain injuries.
But Iranian officials have repeatedly vowed to take further action. Ali Shamkhani, Secretary of the Supreme National Security Council on December 22 said Tehran was determined “to take hard revenge…to prevent terrorist acts by America and its agents and force them out of the region.” On December 30, a few days before the anniversary of Soleimani’s death, his successor as Qods Force commander Esmail Ghaani told the Iranian parliament that those responsible for the assassination “should learn how to live secretly” like British-Indian author Salman Rushdie.
Salman Rushdie was condemned to death by Iran’s leader Ruhollah Khomeini for blasphemy after publishing his 1988 book, The Satanic Verses. He lived under protection for many years, and his public appearances still remain limited.