While American and Iranian officials both indicate that the possibility of such a confrontation has greatly diminished, Esper says the region is still being closely monitored.
But Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, speaking yesterday, said the strike was not necessarily the totality of Iran's response.
Those fears, the officials said, led them to view the broader matrix of threats from Iran and its proxies with greater severity, an assessment compounded by the swiftness with which the Iranian proxy in Iraq, Kata'ib Hezbollah, helped organize the siege of the U.S. Embassy after the December 29 U.S. strike against the group believed responsible for killing a U.S. contractor on December 27.
"My hunch is it was an accident", he said, adding that although Iranian government officials initially blamed American propaganda, they ultimately "did the right thing by admitting it".
The killing of Soleimani has isolated the US.
After months of large protests throughout Iraq that-among other demands-called for the weakening of Iranian influence in the country, the January 3 killing of Soleimani "essentially gifted to radical Shia political leaders [in Iraq] an ascendency", Murphy argued.
Trump rationalized the murder by stating that Soleimani had been about to strike U.S. staff members.
The comments came as the Trump administration continues to face questions over what the "imminent" threat Soleimani posed prior to Trump ordering a military airstrike against him outside of Baghdad's airport.
"I think if there were no tension, if there had not been an escalation recently in the region, these Canadians would now be at home with their families", said Trudeau in an interview with Global Television, according to a transcript. "It was very compelling".
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A volley of more than a dozen missiles aimed at two United States bases on Tuesday night did not result in any casualties, with the U.S. president crediting an "early warning system" for averting further bloodshed that would have deepened the crisis.
Days after the targeting of Iranian General Qasem Soleimani and a retaliatory missile strike on Iraqi bases housing USA troops, Congressman Seth Moulton (D-MA) warned that "we find ourselves closer to war with Iran than at any [other] time in my lifetime".
In a USA TODAY/Ipsos poll released Thursday, 55 percent of us adults said the United States' recent drone strike that killed Soleimani and its immediate aftermath made the country less safe. It also told the United Nations it was an act of self-defence. After the attack, the US launched its own attacks on Kataib Hezbollah locations in Iraq and Syria. We do not want to use it. "Keep in mind, at the same time, we're conducting counter-ISIS operations from Africa through Syria into Afghanistan".
Trump himself implicitly acknowledged the deterrence aim, telling reporters Monday that the strike against Soleimani "should have been done 20 years ago".
On Monday, Attorney General William Barr announced that 21 Saudi military cadets would be expelled from the USA after an investigation unearthed that the Saudis had shared online posts, including jihadi material and child pornography.
On Nov. 4, 1979, a group of radical students stormed the U.S. embassy in Tehran, taking hostage 52 American diplomats and citizens.
But Iran's UN Ambassador Majid Takht Ravanchi said the U.S. offer of talks was "unbelievable" while the United States continued to enforce harsh economic sanctions on Iran.
About 28,000 Saudis have gone through military training in the USA over several decades, according to the Saudi Embassy in Washington.
In its justification for the strike, the USA has repeatedly said Soleimani was planning "imminent attacks" against U.S. forces in the region.
"This is the first incident I'm aware of". Members of Congress said that Pompeo and other officials did not provide enough detail or justification in this week's briefings.