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Pompeo: Killing of Foreign General Part of “Bigger Strategy” Applying to China, Russia

Pompeo once bragged about the killing of “a couple hundred Russians” by U.S. forces in Syria.

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(TMU) — Iranian commander Qassem Soleimani was targeted for assassination as part of a “bigger strategy” of deterring challenges by U.S. adversaries including Russia and China, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has said according to reports. According to Pompeo, the killing of Soleimani put the U.S. in the “greatest position of strength ever.”

The recent statements have called into question the already dubious claims that Soleimani was killed because he was about to carry an “imminent” attack.

I want to lay this out in context of what we’ve been trying to do,” Pompeo said in a speech titled The Restoration of Deterrence: The Iranian Example. “President Trump and those of us in his national security team are re-establishing deterrence—real deterrence—against the Islamic Republic of Iran.”

The idea that Soleimani posed an imminent threat to U.S. assets was shaky from the outset. As CNN notes, Pompeo initially said that Soleimani was killed as he was involved in plotting an “imminent attack” against American lives. The Pentagon appeared to offer a different story when releasing a statement that the strike was carried out to deter future attacks against U.S. interests.

However, Attorney General William Barr took Pompeo’s position one step further by referring to the threat posed by Soleimani as “something of a red herring.”

I believe there was intelligence of imminent attack,” Barr said during a press conference, “but I do believe that the concept of imminence is something of a red herring.”

I think when you’re dealing with a situation where you already have attacks underway, you know there is a campaign that involves repeated attacks on American targets, I don’t think there’s a requirement frankly for, you know, knowing the exact time and place of the next attack. And that certainly was the position of the Obama (sic) when it droned leaders of terrorist organizations,” Barr added.

It is worth noting that the exact details of the administration’s legal justification for the strike remain unclear as the notification sent to Congress in the days after the operation took place is classified.

Putting aside the legal justification, by all accounts the strategic component of the deadly strike is slowly becoming more transparent. As Pompeo explained:

The importance of deterrence isn’t confined to Iran. In all cases, we must deter foes to defend freedom. That’s the whole point of President Trump’s work to make our military the strongest it’s ever been.”

Pompeo further cited many actions the Trump administration has taken that have targeted both China and Russia, including the provision of lethal military aid to Ukraine.

Demonstrating his sincerity regarding this tactic, Pompeo bragged about the killing of “a couple hundred Russians” by U.S. forces in Syria, saying that the Russians had “met their match” early last year.

The administration announced a nuclear posture review that has put Russia on notice that we are gonna recapitalize our deterrent force,” Pompeo also said at the time.

Whether or not this is therefore a strategy of the president himself or is something Pompeo has been working on for some time now is unclear. According to various reports, it was Pompeo who rallied Trump to approve the strike in the first place.

Following the removal of crazed neocon John Bolton, the power and sway Pompeo has with the president has been compared to that of Henry Kissinger.

By Darius Shahtahmasebi | Creative Commons | TheMindUnleashed.com

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Animals

Dolphin Swims Through Louisiana Neighborhood in Aftermath of Hurricane Ida

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A Louisiana family was shocked to find a dolphin swimming through their neighborhood in the aftermath of Hurricane Ida.

Amanda Huling and her family were assessing the damage to their neighborhood in Slidell, Louisiana, when they noticed the dolphin swimming through the inundated suburban landscape.

In video shot by Huling, the marine mammal’s dorsal fin can be seen emerging from the water.

“The dolphin was still there as of last night but I am in contact with an organization who is going to be rescuing it within the next few days if it is still there,” Huling told FOX 35.

Ida slammed into the coast of Louisiana this past weekend. The Category 4 hurricane ravaged the power grid of the region, plunging residents of New Orleans and upwards of 1 million homes and businesses in Louisiana and Mississippi into the dark for an indefinite period of time.

Officials have warned that the damage has been so extensive that it could take weeks to repair the power grid, reports Associated Press.

Also in Slidell, a 71-year-old man was attacked by an alligator over the weekend while he was in his flooded shed. The man went missing and is assumed dead, reports WDSU.

Internet users began growing weary last year about the steady stream of stories belonging to a “nature is healing” genre, as people stayed indoors and stories emerged about animals taking back their environs be it in the sea or in our suburbs.

However, these latest events are the surreal realities of a world in which extreme weather events are fast becoming the new normal – disrupting our lives in sometimes predictable, and occasionally shocking and surreal, ways.

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Mom in LA Suburbs Fights Off Mountain Lion With Bare Hands, Rescues 5-Year-Old Son

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A mother in Southern California is being hailed as a hero after rescuing her five-year-old son from an attacking mountain lion.

The little boy was playing outside his home in Calabasas, a city lying west of Los Angeles in the Santa Monica Mountains, when the large cat pounced on him.

The 65-pound (30 kg) mountain lion dragged the boy about 45 yards across the front lawn before the mother acted fast, running out and striking the creature with her bare hands and forcing it to free her son.

“The true hero of this story is his mom because she absolutely saved her son’s life,” California Department of Fish and Wildlife spokesman Captain Patrick Foy told Associated Press on Saturday.

“She ran out of the house and started punching and striking the mountain lion with her bare hands and got him off her son,” Foy added.

The boy sustained significant injuries to his head, neck and upper torso, but is now in stable condition at a hospital in Los Angeles, according to authorities.

The mountain lion was later located and killed by an officer with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, who found the big cat crouching in the bushes with its “ears back and hissing” at the officer shortly after he arrived at the property.

“Due to its behavior and proximity to the attack, the warden believed it was likely the attacking lion and to protect public safety shot and killed it on sight,” the wildlife department noted in its statement.

The mountain lion attack is the first such attack on a human in Los Angeles County since 1995, according to Fish and Wildlife.

The Santa Monica Mountains is a biodiverse region teeming with wildlife such as large raptors, mountain lions, bears, coyote, deer, lizards, and snakes. However, their numbers have rapidly faded in recent years, causing local wildlife authorities to find new ways to manage the region’s endemic species.

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Video Shows Taliban Taking Joyride in Captured US Blackhawk Helicopter

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The rapid fall of Kabul to the Taliban has resulted in a number of surreal sights – from footage of the Islamist group’s fighters exercising at a presidential gym to clips of combatants having a great time on bumper cars at the local fun park.

However, a new video of Taliban members seemingly testing their skills in the cockpit of a commandeered UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter shows the chilling extent to which U.S. wares have fallen into the hands of a group it spent trillions of dollars, and exhaustive resources, to stamp out.

In the new video, shared on Twitter, the front-line utility helicopter can be seen taxiing on the ground at Kandahar Airport in southeastern Afghanistan, moving along the tarmac. It is unclear who exactly was sitting in the cockpit, and the Black Hawk cannot be seen taking off or flying.

It is unlikely that the Taliban have any combatants who are sufficiently trained to fly a UH-60 Black Hawk.

The helicopter, which carries a $6 million price tag, is just a small part of the massive haul that fell into the militant group’s hands after the country’s central government seemingly evaporated on Aug. 14 amid the withdrawal of U.S. and coalition troops.

Some 200,000 firearms, 20,000 Humvees and hundreds of aircraft financed by Washington for the now-defunct Afghan Army are believed to be in the possession of the Taliban.

The firearms include M24 sniper rifles, M18 assault weapons, anti-tank missiles, automatic grenade launchers, rocket-propelled grenades and mortars.

Taliban fighters in the elite Badri 313 Brigade have been seen in propaganda images showing off in uniforms and wielding weaponry meant for the special forces units of the Afghan Army.

The U.S. is known to have purchased 42,000 light tactical vehicles, 9,000 medium tactical vehicles and over 22,000 Humvees between 2003 and 2016.

The White House remains unclear on how much weaponry has fallen into Taliban hands, with National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan admitting last week that the U.S. lacks a “clear picture of just how much missing $83 billion of military inventory” the group has.

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