Sensing opportunity and weakness with the new Biden administration desperately wanting a new Iran nuclear deal, and failing to respond forcefully to Iranian-backed militia attacks in Iraq, Iranian terror leaders are reportedly planning a bold attack on U.S. soil.
According to communications intelligence (COMINT) intercepts by the National Security Agency (NSA), Iranian terror leaders have discussed plans to attack Fort McNair, a critical Army post in the U.S. capital, and kill the Army’s vice chief of staff, who lives there.
Ft. MacNair, located on the water near the bustling, newly developed Waterfront District of DC, is home to the Joint Force Headquarters-National Capital Region and the U.S. Army Military District of Washington. Its motto is “Guardian of the Nation’s Capital.”
The Army post, one of the oldest in the country, also houses the Vice chief of staff, General Joseph M. Martin Martin’s official residence. It is also home to the National War College, where senior military officers hoping for admiral or general study national security strategy.
The AP, citing two unnamed U.S. intelligence officials, reported that the COMINT intercepts showed that:
…Iran’s Revolutionary Guard discussed mounting “USS Cole-style attacks” against the Army post, referring to the October 2000 suicide attack in which a small boat pulled up alongside the Navy destroyer in the Yemeni port of Aden and exploded, killing 17 sailors.
The intelligence also revealed threats to kill Gen. Joseph M. Martin and plans to infiltrate and surveil the installation, according to the officials, who were not authorized to publicly discuss national security matters and spoke on condition of anonymity.
The intercepted COMINT chatter was reportedly among members of the elite paramilitary Quds Force of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and focused on potential military options to avenge the targeted U.S. killing of the former Quds Force leader, Qassem Soleimani, in Baghdad in January 2020.
According to AP, the two U.S. intelligence officials “said Tehran’s military commanders are unsatisfied with their counter-attacks so far, specifically the results of the ballistic missile attack on Ain al-Asad airbase in Iraq in the days after Soleimani’s killing.”
These new threats from Iran have increased tension with DC officials and residents as the Pentagon seeks to expand its security perimeter around the base. In January Major General Omar Jones, commander of the Military District of Washington, cited “credible and specific” threats against military leaders who live on the Army post.
City officials remain unconvinced and continue to push back the Pentagon security plans.
No response or comment yet from the White House or Pentagon.
The Biden administration has failed to retaliate decisively against Iran for several rocket attacks by Iranian-backed militias in Iraq, including one attack on the U.S. embassy in Baghdad.
As I noted earlier, the only response by Team Biden so far has been a pinprick airstrike against a militant road stop in Syria, which is only fueling more Iranian-backed attacks in Iraq, and likely encouraging these plans for even greater strikes against the United States.