Why is #WW3 trending on Twitter?
A snapshot of what’s happening in the Middle East (and how people are handling it on social media).
Day three and dry Jan is already shot to shit, because if there’s going to be a third world war, we’re all going to need a stiff drink.
This morning we woke to the news that Donald Trump had ordered the killing of Iran’s most powerful military commander, General Qasem Soleimani. While the rest of us were editing and re-editing those heartfelt, start-of-a-new-decade, leaving-the-toxic-shit-behind Instagram posts, Trump was in Florida, orchestrating the end of world peace. Sigh.
Widely considered to be the most powerful man in the country, behind Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, General Soleimani was killed at Baghdad airport by a US drone strike.
Tensions between the US and Iran go back as far as 1953 when Iran’s democratically elected Prime Minister, Mohammad Mosaddegh planned to nationalise the country’s oil industry. In response, the CIA, alongside British intelligence services, orchestrated a coup which led to his overthrow.
Following a period of relative cooperation under the Obama administration, General Soleimani’s death seems to signal the end of any potential accord between the two countries.
In a statement issued yesterday, the US Department of Defense claimed:
“General Soleimani was actively developing plans to attack American diplomats and service members in Iraq and throughout the region. General Soleimani and his Quds Force were responsible for the deaths of hundreds of American and coalition service members and the wounding of thousands more. He had orchestrated attacks on coalition bases in Iraq over the last several months – including the attack on 27th December – culminating in the death and wounding of additional American and Iraqi personnel. General Soleimani also approved the attacks on the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad that took place this week.”
They also argued that the strike was meant to deter “future Iranian attack plans”.
General Soleimani’s death has caused outrage in Iran, with Ayatollah Khamenei announcing that “severe revenge awaits the criminals” who perpetrated the attack.
Though there has been no official word on what that revenge might entail, other nations have also condemned the action, with Iraq’s parliamentary speaker saying that an attack on Iraqui soil was “a breach [of] Iraq’s sovereignty and a violation of international agreements” and arguing that “repercussions of such attack would threaten the stability of Iraq and the region”.
Though it’s not clear what the outcome will be, it seems that we’re closer to another global war than we have been in many years.
Which has sparked fears from some at the prospect of being drafted…
Although, one or two people seem kinda up for it…
Still, it seems like the reactions of the majority can be neatly summed up by the adage “you’ve got to laugh or you’ll cry…”