During the live televised broadcast of the funeral of Iranian Gen. Qasem Soleimani on Sunday, an official state broadcaster stated that a huge bounty had been put on the head of U.S. President Donald Trump, the money being provided by the Iranian populace.
“On behalf of all of Iran’s people – 80 million Iranians – and each puts aside US$1, it would equal $80million,” the broadcaster said. “And we would give this $80million, on our own behalf, as a gift to anyone who brings the head of the person who ordered the murder of the grand figure of our revolution.”
“Anyone who brings us the head of this yellow-haired lunatic, we would give him $80million on behalf of the great Iranian nation. Chant if you agree.”
Loud chants from the throngs attending the funeral followed the remarks in the video.
- Hanif Jazayeri, a news editor affiliated with the National Council of Resistance in Iran, claimed “Iran’s regime” (i.e. the Iranian government) had actually offered the bounty and not a lone broadcaster.
OMG! Iran’s regime just announced an $80 million bounty for anyone who brings the head of @realDonaldTrump for killing Soleimani.
PS: Iran’s ppl however are overjoyed at Soleimani’s death. As the #IranProtests have shown, they long for an end to the mullahs’ tyranny #FreeIran2020 pic.twitter.com/uB3zOG5EKA
— M. Hanif Jazayeri (@HanifJazayeri) January 5, 2020
NBC News Tehran bureau chief and correspondent Ali Arouzi posted the announcement of a bounty on Twitter.
At Solemani’s funeral procession in Mashad one of the organisers called on all Iranian to donate $1 each in order to gather an $80million bounty on President Trumps head. pic.twitter.com/Qb7AAfAiww
— Ali Arouzi (@aliarouzi) January 5, 2020
This echoed a threat made by Abolfazl Aboutorabi, a Member of Iran’s Parliament, who called the targeted killing of Sleimani an “act of war.”
‘We can attack the White House itself, we can respond to them on American soil,” Aboutorabi said in an open session of parliament on Sunday. “We have the power, and God willing we will respond in an appropriate time. When someone declares war, do you want to respond to the bullets with flowers? They will shoot you in the head.”
The Iranian-led militia Katiab Hezbollah warned Iraqi soldiers to stay at least 1000 meters away from all U.S. military assets in their country. Implicit in this warning is an intention to attack these facilities. It may also be an attempt to create a divide between the U.S. forces in Iraq and the local forces who are allied with them.
The government requested that all U.S. citizens in Iraq leave the country immediately and all consular services from the embassy in Baghdad were suspended.
Comedian George Lopez, who has appeared at events for former President Barack Obama and Sen. Bernie Sanders, responded to nn Instagram account posted a graphic that stated: “Iran ‘offers $80 million bounty for Donald Trump’s head’ after death of general.” with the comment “We’ll do it for half.”
Here’s George Lopez saying he’ll take Trump’s life for half the bounty. A real class act. pic.twitter.com/0q2eS9lKAa
— Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) January 6, 2020
The Daily Wire noted that Lopez has a history of such comments that explicitly threaten the president. In February 2016, Lopez tweeted an image of former Mexican president Vincente Fox holding the decapitated head of Donald Trump.
— George Lopez (@georgelopez) February 28, 2016
The international tensions pitting Iran against the U.S. came to a head ten days ago when a rocket attack carried out by Iranian-backed militia against as U.S. military compound in northern Iraq killed a U.S. defense contractor and wounded four U.S. soldiers. The U.S. military responded last Monday with airstrikes that hit five targets on both sides of the border between Syria and Iraq marking the first counterstrike in a decade against an Iran-aligned Iraqi Shia militia. The airstrike killed at least 25 and wounded 25.
The Iranian-backed militias stormed the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad on Friday, breaching the walls. Trump ordered a drone strike that killed Soleimani and five others,