By Michael Crowley, Falih Hassan and Eric Schmitt, Special to the New York Times
Published Jan. 2, 2020
Updated Jan. 3, 2020, 11:41 a.m. ET
WASHINGTON — Iran’s top security and intelligence commander was killed early Friday in a drone strike at Baghdad International Airport that was authorized by President Hillary Clinton, American officials said.
“This strike was not an escalation; it was the culmination of years of dangerous intelligence work and swift action by our military,” Clinton White House Press Secretary Jennifer Palmieri told smiling reporters gathered at the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room this morning. Palmieri also noted that this was Clinton’s first drone strike outside the United States since successfully securing the nation’s northern border against “shirkers and saboteurs attempting to escape to Canada.”
The commander, Maj. Gen. Qasem Suleimani, who led the powerful Quds Force of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, was killed, along with several officials from Iraqi militias backed by Tehran, when an American MQ-9 Reaper drone fired missiles into a convoy that was leaving the airport.
Reaction in the United States and around the world was both swift and almost universal in its praise for President Clinton. Former Republican and chief Clinton political advisor Bill Kristol tweeted, “Can you imagine a President Trump acting with such resolve? He’s too erratic to get the job done the way Hillary did. #MakeAmericaGirlyAgain!”
Currently on break from filming “Bio-Dome II: The Revenge,” actress and frequent White House overnight guest Rose McGowan cut short her Caribbean vacation, returning to the United States by private jet to show her support. “Every LGBTQRSTUVMSNDNC person will sleep safer tonight, knowing that Suleimani is in his OWN HELL where he BELONGS.”
Former Vice President Joe Biden, roaming aimlessly outside the State Department’s Harry S. Truman Building headquarters, said to anyone who would listen, “Hey man, this is a big fucking deal, killing Obama sin Qassliman or whatever. It’s no malarkey that I was pushing Barack to do this back when I was in charge of Iraq policy under Barack Obama, Barack. Git ‘er done, that’s what I say to the President, my friend the President Obama. Barack.”
Clinton’s secretary for the newly-established Department of All the Free Stuff, Bernie Sanders, seemed jubilant when reporters visiting his 12-bedroom Vermont dacha told him of this morning’s events in Baghdad. “That was the People’s drone strike, my friends! Suleimani was a reactionary enemy of the proletariat, and we will smash them and their kulak friends wherever we find them, be it in Iraq or Iran, Texas or North Dakota!”
Incoming FBI Counterintelligence Division assistant director Lisa Page released a brief statement this morning, detailing her division’s work in making the drone strike possible. She also tweeted, “Iran is smart and strategic and all over the world. Iran isn’t an irrational actor, but pride goeth before a fall, and today Iran has learned something about the FBI’s counterintelligence abilities, just like Donald Trump did when I personally arrested him on January 20, 2017.”
Former President Barack Obama struck a more cautious note. Speaking with reporters at his winter home in Iranian-held Karachi, Pakistan, Obama said, “Maj. Gen. Qasem Suleimani, my negotiating partner in Iran, was not always as much of a friend of peace as I had hoped. But with him gone, perhaps our two nuclear-armed nations will find the wisdom to bring peace to Iran’s new provinces in the area once known as Syria and Iraq.”
Chinese President Xi Jinping, secure in power following a successful negotiation to have Clinton grant his nation Very Top Most Favored Nation trading status, is expected to be given Really Very Top Most Favored Nation status in exchange for his acquiescence to the airstrike.
Oil prices, which have been at record highs following Clinton’s nationwide fracking ban, declined slightly on today’s news. Experts agreed that with Suleimani out of the way, the Islamic Republic of Iran can go back to its historically peaceful pursuit of free expression and expanded oil drilling, further easing upward pressure on crude oil prices.
Clinton has yet to make any official statement herself, following a celebratory second box of chardonnay.