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Westlake Legal Group > fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east

US military families receiving ‘menacing’ messages: ‘Leave the Middle East. Go back to your country’

Relatives of U.S. paratroopers deployed to Kuwait earlier this month, amid heightening tensions with Iran, have been receiving “menacing” messages on social media, prompting an alert this week from the U.S. Army to family members of service members, according to reports.

The 82nd Airborne Division out of Fort Bragg, N.C., reminded family members to limit who is able to see social media posts after some received pro-Iranian messages that in one message warned them to “Go back to your country,” according to The Military Times.

“Families have reported instances where they have received unsolicited contact with some menacing messaging,” Lt. Col. Mike Burns, a division spokesman, told The Times.

IRANIAN CYBERATTACKS COULD CAUSE ‘REAL DAMAGE,’ WARNS CYBERSECURITY EXPERT

One Instagram message obtained by The Times seemed particularly threatening.

“If you like your life and you want to see your family again, pack up your stuff right now and leave the Middle East,” the message read. “Go back to your country. You and your terrorist clown president brought nothing but terrorism. You fools underestimate the power of Iran. The recent attack on your [expletive] bases was just a little taste of our power. By killing our general, you dug your own grave. Before having more dead bodies, just leave the region for good and never look back.”

“You and your terrorist clown president brought nothing but terrorism. You fools underestimate the power of Iran.”

— Instagram message sent to U.S. military families

The Times reported there was no evidence the message came from the Iranian government, and it was a typical “psychological operations-styled warning.”

Some of the other messages included fake kidnapping threats, the outlet reported.

The division’s 1st Brigade Combat Team was told to leave behind any personal communication devices that could be compromised when they deployed in early January.

The decision was made so soldiers weren’t put at risk,” Burns told The Times.

Westlake Legal Group AP20006730882541 US military families receiving 'menacing' messages: 'Leave the Middle East. Go back to your country' fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox-news/us/military/army fox-news/us/military fox-news/tech/topics/cybercrime fox news fnc/us fnc Brie Stimson article 79262787-765a-5f72-a215-b3ea3581af0c

​​​​​​​Paratroopers assigned to 1st Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division walk as they prepare equipment and load aircraft bound for the U.S. Central Command area of operations from Fort Bragg, N.C., Jan. 4, 2020. (Spc. Hubert Delany III/U.S. Army via AP, File)

The Army also reminded family members to never post personal details that could help nefarious actors determine where they are and to curb talking about their associations with the military online, WTSP-TV of St. Petersburg, Fla., reported.

The Department of Homeland Security has warned of potential cyber-attacks by the Iranian government in the wake of the U.S. airstrike that killed top Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani on Jan. 3.

A few days after Soleimani’s death, the Federal Depository Library Program’s website was hacked by a pro-Iranian group that defaced the U.S. government website with anti-American, pro-Iranian images.

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The website was back up within about 24 hours, The Washington Post reported.

Westlake Legal Group AP20006730882541 US military families receiving 'menacing' messages: 'Leave the Middle East. Go back to your country' fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox-news/us/military/army fox-news/us/military fox-news/tech/topics/cybercrime fox news fnc/us fnc Brie Stimson article 79262787-765a-5f72-a215-b3ea3581af0c   Westlake Legal Group AP20006730882541 US military families receiving 'menacing' messages: 'Leave the Middle East. Go back to your country' fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox-news/us/military/army fox-news/us/military fox-news/tech/topics/cybercrime fox news fnc/us fnc Brie Stimson article 79262787-765a-5f72-a215-b3ea3581af0c

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‘Jeopardy!’ clue on Church of the Nativity sparks controversy

Westlake Legal Group Alex-trebek 'Jeopardy!' clue on Church of the Nativity sparks controversy Vandana Rambaran fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/world-regions/israel fox-news/shows/jeopardy fox-news/entertainment/tv fox news fnc/entertainment fnc c11d0add-80e8-59ef-a536-90a5cdfa93e2 article

A clue on “Jeopardy!” sparked protests from viewers about the location of a world-famous church in Bethlehem.

Host Alex Trebek read off a clue for $200 from the category “Where’s that church?” that read: “Built in the 300s A.D., the Church of the Nativity.”

The first contestant to buzz in, Katie Needle, responded: “What is Palestine?” but Trebek rejected her answer, saying, “No.”

‘JEOPARDY!’ HOST ALEX TREBEK IS LEADING HIS LIFE ‘WITH DIGNITY’ AMID CANCER TREATMENTS, SAYS ROB BELUSHI

Another contestant, Jack McGuire, buzzed in with the reply, “What is Israel?” Trebek ruled him correct.

The Church of the Nativity, where many Christians believe Jesus Christ was born, is located in Bethlehem, part of the West Bank. The region has long been the site of conflict between the Israelis and Palestinians.

Furious viewers took to Twitter to chastize Trebek and demand an apology from the show.

Omar Baddar, the deputy director of the non-profit Arab American Institute, decried that Needle was “robbed” and called Trebek’s ruling “unacceptable!”

“@Jeopardy owes an apology for endorsing Israel’s universally-condemned illegal takeover of Palestinian lands,” Baddar tweeted.

CLICK HERE FOR THE FOX NEWS APP

The grassroots group Code Pink launched a petition after Friday’s episode demanding that the show apologize “for your politically dangerous inaccuracy.”

Representatives for “Jeopardy!” did not immediately respond to Fox News’ requests for comment.

Westlake Legal Group Alex-trebek 'Jeopardy!' clue on Church of the Nativity sparks controversy Vandana Rambaran fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/world-regions/israel fox-news/shows/jeopardy fox-news/entertainment/tv fox news fnc/entertainment fnc c11d0add-80e8-59ef-a536-90a5cdfa93e2 article   Westlake Legal Group Alex-trebek 'Jeopardy!' clue on Church of the Nativity sparks controversy Vandana Rambaran fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/world-regions/israel fox-news/shows/jeopardy fox-news/entertainment/tv fox news fnc/entertainment fnc c11d0add-80e8-59ef-a536-90a5cdfa93e2 article

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US military’s Iran policy ‘not going to change overnight,’ Gen. Robert Scales says

Westlake Legal Group Scales- US military's Iran policy 'not going to change overnight,' Gen. Robert Scales says Talia Kaplan fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/world-regions/iraq fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox-news/topic/fox-news-flash fox-news/shows/americas-news-hq-weekend fox-news/politics/foreign-policy/middle-east fox-news/politics/defense/pentagon fox news fnc/media fnc d792fe59-f7ef-5bd0-973c-7896c9bc2566 article

Retired U.S. Army Major General Robert Scales reacted Sunday to the protests that had erupted in Iran after the rogue nation admitted it shot down a Ukrainian passenger plane killing all 176 people on board, saying America’s military policy in the country “is not going to change overnight.”

“Now that the nuclear deal is off the table, the Trump administration can talk directly to the Iranian people and say that we’re with the people, not with the ayatollah,” Scales said on “America’s News HQ.”

“The other thing I think that’s important here is that Trump’s strategy is principally economic rather than military.”

“By squeezing them economically with the sanctions, they also add that additional pressure that stresses the day-to-day lives of the Iranian people,” he continued. “This is a long game focused on fomenting revolution.”

President Trump tweeted a message of support to the protesters on Saturday, in both Farsi and English, promising his administration would continue to stand with them in solidarity.

Scales said Trump had two choices.

“First is a covert information war used principally through social media,” the retired general explained, described as Washington making contact “periodically with protesters to try to encourage them and give them advice on what to do.”

TRUMP TWEETS SUPPORT OF IRANIAN ANTI-GOVERNMENT PROTESTERS AFTER UKRAINIAN PASSENGER PLANE SHOT DOWN

“Secondly is the covert military operations that haven’t let up at all in the past year and will likely continue,” he added. “And, of course, those are highly classified, but they tend to be very, very effective over the long term. This is not going to change overnight.”

Scales also weighed in shortly after new reports surfaced that four members of Iraq’s military were wounded Sunday in an attack by at least six rockets targeting an air base just north of Baghdad where American trainers have been present. Sunday’s attack came just days after Iran fired more than a dozen ballistic missiles at two bases in Iraq housing U.S. forces, in response to the U.S.-ordered killing of top Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani.

“We reassured our partners and allies in the region that we will stand up and defend our interests,” Defense Secretary Mark Esper told CBS News’ “Face the Nation” on Sunday. “We do not expect any further attacks.”

When asked if there was a little hubris in saying more attacks from the Iranians or their proxies weren’t expected, Scales responded by saying, “Yeah, but this is small beer.”

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The retired general said a local militia likely conducted Sunday’s attack. “This is a long way from resumption of the surrogate strategic campaign by the [Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.] They’re back on their heels. With Soleimani dead, they’re going to have to find another moral leader of this movement and restart it. We’re going to have a period of pause while the Iranians try to get their act together.”

Fox News’ Leland Vittert and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group Scales- US military's Iran policy 'not going to change overnight,' Gen. Robert Scales says Talia Kaplan fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/world-regions/iraq fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox-news/topic/fox-news-flash fox-news/shows/americas-news-hq-weekend fox-news/politics/foreign-policy/middle-east fox-news/politics/defense/pentagon fox news fnc/media fnc d792fe59-f7ef-5bd0-973c-7896c9bc2566 article   Westlake Legal Group Scales- US military's Iran policy 'not going to change overnight,' Gen. Robert Scales says Talia Kaplan fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/world-regions/iraq fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox-news/topic/fox-news-flash fox-news/shows/americas-news-hq-weekend fox-news/politics/foreign-policy/middle-east fox-news/politics/defense/pentagon fox news fnc/media fnc d792fe59-f7ef-5bd0-973c-7896c9bc2566 article

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Iran protesters chant ‘Death to England’ outside British Embassy

Dozens of hard-line militia members gathered outside the British Embassy in Iran on Sunday, chanting “Death to England,” and calling for the ambassador to be expelled and the embassy closed.

The protests in Tehran followed British Ambassador Rob Macaire’s arrest for attending a Saturday night vigil for the victims of the Ukrainian passenger plane that Iran admitted it accidentally shot down earlier this week. All 176 people on board were killed.

Macaire, who has been Britain’s envoy to Iran since March 2018, left the vigil after it became a demonstration — but Iranian authorities later arrested him on allegations that he helped to incite the anti-government protest.

Westlake Legal Group AP20012579449268 Iran protesters chant 'Death to England' outside British Embassy fox-news/world/world-regions/united-kingdom fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox news fnc/world fnc Bradford Betz article a9ba979d-0522-567c-ab41-e28387e8e2c9

Protesters chanting slogans and holding up posters of Gen. Qassem Soleimani during a demonstration in front of the British Embassy in Tehran on Sunday. (AP)

TRUMP ISSUES WARNING TO IRAN: ‘DO NOT KILL YOUR PROTESTERS… THE USA IS WATCHING’

Police released him after three hours but his arrest outraged the British government.

British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab derided Macaire’s arrest as a “flagrant violation of international law.”

Alaeddin Boroujerdi, a member of Iran’s parliamentary committee on national security and foreign policy, accused the ambassador of organizing Saturday night’s protests. Iranian state media echoed the claim.

Iranian foreign minister Seyed Abbas Araghchi on Sunday denied that investigators knew Macaire’s identity when he was arrested.

“He wasn’t detained, but arrested as unknown foreigner in an illegal gathering,” Araghchi tweeted. “When police informed me a man’s arrested who claims to be UK Amb, I said IMPOSSIBLE! only after my phone conversation w him I identified, out of big surprise, that it’s him. 15 min later he was free.”

Macaire denied taking part in any demonstrations, tweeting that he had gone to the event advertised as a vigil for the victims of the Ukraine airline crash.

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“Normal to want to pay respects- some of victims were British,” he wrote. “I left after 5 mins, when some started chanting.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group AP20012579449268 Iran protesters chant 'Death to England' outside British Embassy fox-news/world/world-regions/united-kingdom fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox news fnc/world fnc Bradford Betz article a9ba979d-0522-567c-ab41-e28387e8e2c9   Westlake Legal Group AP20012579449268 Iran protesters chant 'Death to England' outside British Embassy fox-news/world/world-regions/united-kingdom fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox news fnc/world fnc Bradford Betz article a9ba979d-0522-567c-ab41-e28387e8e2c9

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Iran arrests UK ambassador in what Britain calls ‘flagrant violation of international law’

A top British official condemned Saturday’s arrest of the U.K. ambassador to Iran during anti-government protests in Tehran, calling the detainment “a flagrant violation of international law.”

Rob Macaire, who has been Britain’s envoy to the Islamic republic since March 2018, was arrested as he stopped at a barber shop for a haircut after attending a vigil for the victims of a Ukrainian jetliner that crashed in Tehran last week, the BBC reported.

Macaire left the vigil after it became a demonstration but was later accused by Iranian authorities of helping to incite the anti-government protest, The Independent of Britain reported.

TRUMP TWEETS SUPPORT OF IRANIAN ANTI-GOVERNMENT PROTESTERS AFTER UKRAINIAN PASSENGER PLANE SHOT DOWN

He was released after three hours but the arrest infuriated the British government.

“The arrest of our Ambassador in Tehran without grounds or explanation is a flagrant violation of international law,” British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said in a statement.

“The Iranian government is at a cross-roads moment. It can continue its march towards pariah status with all the political and economic isolation that entails, or take steps to deescalate tensions and engage in a diplomatic path forwards.”

A photo of Macaire was posted on Twitter by the Etemad newspaper of Iran after his arrest was reported by the Tasnim news agency, according to the BBC.

Tasnim tweeted that Macaire was detained “for organizing suspicious movements and protests in front of Amir Kabir University but released after hours.” The tweet added that Macaire would be “summoned by the foreign ministry tomorrow morning.”

Westlake Legal Group 74eadcda-uk-ambassador-iran Iran arrests UK ambassador in what Britain calls ‘flagrant violation of international law’ fox-news/world/world-regions/united-kingdom fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox-news/politics/foreign-policy/state-department fox-news/politics/foreign-policy fox news fnc/world fnc f55e0f35-6483-57cd-b7b5-9f3df12c3aea Dom Calicchio article

Rob Macaire has been Britain’s ambassador to Iran since March 2018. (Twitter)

In a Twitter message, U.S. State Department spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus called Macaire’s arrest a violation of the Vienna Convention, which she said the Iranian regime “has a notorious history of violating.”

“We call on the regime to formally apologize to the UK for violating his rights and to respect the rights of all diplomats,” Ortagus wrote.

Saturday’s anti-government protests in Tehran followed Iran’s admission Friday that its military had “unintentionally” show down a Ukrainian passenger jet last week, killing all 176 people on board.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

Both Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif attributed the downing of the jet to “human error” – but the foreign minister added that the error had been caused by “U.S. adventurism” – a likely reference to the American airstrike that killed Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad on Jan. 3.

On Saturday, both President Trump and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo tweeted messages of support for the Iranian citizens who opposed the nation’s government.

“The voice of the Iranian people is clear. They are fed up with the regime’s lies, corruption, ineptitude, and brutality of the IRGC under @khamenei_ir‘s kleptocracy,” Pompeo wrote.

Westlake Legal Group uk-ambassador-iran Iran arrests UK ambassador in what Britain calls ‘flagrant violation of international law’ fox-news/world/world-regions/united-kingdom fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox-news/politics/foreign-policy/state-department fox-news/politics/foreign-policy fox news fnc/world fnc f55e0f35-6483-57cd-b7b5-9f3df12c3aea Dom Calicchio article   Westlake Legal Group uk-ambassador-iran Iran arrests UK ambassador in what Britain calls ‘flagrant violation of international law’ fox-news/world/world-regions/united-kingdom fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox-news/politics/foreign-policy/state-department fox-news/politics/foreign-policy fox news fnc/world fnc f55e0f35-6483-57cd-b7b5-9f3df12c3aea Dom Calicchio article

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Iran arrests UK ambassador in what Britain calls ‘flagrant violation of international law’

A top British official condemned Saturday’s arrest of the U.K. ambassador to Iran during anti-government protests in Tehran, calling the detainment “a flagrant violation of international law.”

Rob Macaire, who has been Britain’s envoy to the Islamic republic since March 2018, was arrested as he stopped at a barber shop for a haircut after attending a vigil for the victims of a Ukrainian jetliner that crashed in Tehran last week, the BBC reported.

Macaire left the vigil after it became a demonstration but was later accused by Iranian authorities of helping to incite the anti-government protest, The Independent of Britain reported.

TRUMP TWEETS SUPPORT OF IRANIAN ANTI-GOVERNMENT PROTESTERS AFTER UKRAINIAN PASSENGER PLANE SHOT DOWN

He was released after three hours but the arrest infuriated the British government.

“The arrest of our Ambassador in Tehran without grounds or explanation is a flagrant violation of international law,” British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said in a statement.

“The Iranian government is at a cross-roads moment. It can continue its march towards pariah status with all the political and economic isolation that entails, or take steps to deescalate tensions and engage in a diplomatic path forwards.”

A photo of Macaire was posted on Twitter by the Etemad newspaper of Iran after his arrest was reported by the Tasnim news agency, according to the BBC.

Tasnim tweeted that Macaire was detained “for organizing suspicious movements and protests in front of Amir Kabir University but released after hours.” The tweet added that Macaire would be “summoned by the foreign ministry tomorrow morning.”

Westlake Legal Group 74eadcda-uk-ambassador-iran Iran arrests UK ambassador in what Britain calls ‘flagrant violation of international law’ fox-news/world/world-regions/united-kingdom fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox-news/politics/foreign-policy/state-department fox-news/politics/foreign-policy fox news fnc/world fnc f55e0f35-6483-57cd-b7b5-9f3df12c3aea Dom Calicchio article

Rob Macaire has been Britain’s ambassador to Iran since March 2018. (Twitter)

In a Twitter message, U.S. State Department spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus called Macaire’s arrest a violation of the Vienna Convention, which she said the Iranian regime “has a notorious history of violating.”

“We call on the regime to formally apologize to the UK for violating his rights and to respect the rights of all diplomats,” Ortagus wrote.

Saturday’s anti-government protests in Tehran followed Iran’s admission Friday that its military had “unintentionally” show down a Ukrainian passenger jet last week, killing all 176 people on board.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

Both Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif attributed the downing of the jet to “human error” – but the foreign minister added that the error had been caused by “U.S. adventurism” – a likely reference to the American airstrike that killed Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad on Jan. 3.

On Saturday, both President Trump and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo tweeted messages of support for the Iranian citizens who opposed the nation’s government.

“The voice of the Iranian people is clear. They are fed up with the regime’s lies, corruption, ineptitude, and brutality of the IRGC under @khamenei_ir‘s kleptocracy,” Pompeo wrote.

Westlake Legal Group uk-ambassador-iran Iran arrests UK ambassador in what Britain calls ‘flagrant violation of international law’ fox-news/world/world-regions/united-kingdom fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox-news/politics/foreign-policy/state-department fox-news/politics/foreign-policy fox news fnc/world fnc f55e0f35-6483-57cd-b7b5-9f3df12c3aea Dom Calicchio article   Westlake Legal Group uk-ambassador-iran Iran arrests UK ambassador in what Britain calls ‘flagrant violation of international law’ fox-news/world/world-regions/united-kingdom fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox-news/politics/foreign-policy/state-department fox-news/politics/foreign-policy fox news fnc/world fnc f55e0f35-6483-57cd-b7b5-9f3df12c3aea Dom Calicchio article

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Trump tweets support of Iranian anti-government protesters after Ukrainian passenger plane shot down

Westlake Legal Group donald-trump-thumbs-up-2-AP Trump tweets support of Iranian anti-government protesters after Ukrainian passenger plane shot down Nick Givas fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/conflicts/ukraine fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox-news/person/donald-trump fox news fnc/politics fnc b27c0d79-28b7-5acf-9ae2-11fb5eb56f9c article

Anti-government protests erupted at Iranian universities across the country on Saturday, following Iran‘s claim that it unintentionally shot down a Ukrainian passenger plane with surface-to-air missiles, killing all 176 people who were on board.

Gen. Amir Ali Hajizadeh, head of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard’s aerospace division, had told state TV that his unit accepts “full responsibility” for shooting down the Ukrainian aircraft, just minutes after it took off from Tehran’s international airport on Wednesday. Iranian President Hassan Rouhani blamed “human error” in a tweet Friday, and called it a “great tragedy and unforgivable mistake.”

Students called for the resignation of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, with one protester holding up a banner that read, “F–k you & your mistake,” at Amir Kabir University, the New York Post reported. The banner also showed the names and photos of 16 students who died in the crash.

Crowds of students chanted for the Revolutionary Guards to “let go of the country!” and also mentioned deceased Gen. Qassem Soleimani, saying that he “was a murderer” and “his leader is too!” President Trump had ordered the drone strike on Solemani and declared the world a safer place following his death.

IRAN ADMITS TO ‘UNINTENTIONALLY’ SHOOTING DOWN UKRANIAN PLANE, SAYS IT MISTOOK AIRCRAFT FOR HOSTILE TARGET

Trump tweeted a message of support to the protesters on Saturday, in both Persian and English, promising that his administration would continue to stand with them in solidarity.

“To the brave, long-suffering people of Iran: I’ve stood with you since the beginning of my Presidency, and my Administration will continue to stand with you. We are following your protests closely, and are inspired by your courage,” Trump’s first tweet read.

The president quickly followed up with a second tweet, calling on Iran to allow human rights advocates to monitor major protests within the country, and warning against any draconian government action.

“The government of Iran must allow human rights groups to monitor and report facts from the ground on the ongoing protests by the Iranian people,” Trump wrote. “There can not be another massacre of peaceful protesters, nor an internet shutdown. The world is watching.”

ERIC SHAWN: ‘DEATH TO THE DICTATOR!’ ECHOES IN TEHRAN

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo also weighed in on the protests, tweeting Saturday that the Iranian people have every right to be frustrated and deserve a brighter future.

“The voice of the Iranian people is clear. They are fed up with the regime’s lies, corruption, ineptitude, and brutality of the IRGC under @khamenei_ir‘s kleptocracy,” he said.

“We stand with the Iranian people who deserve a better future,” Pompeo added.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

Protests were also reportedly held at three other Universities in Tehran.

Westlake Legal Group donald-trump-thumbs-up-2-AP Trump tweets support of Iranian anti-government protesters after Ukrainian passenger plane shot down Nick Givas fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/conflicts/ukraine fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox-news/person/donald-trump fox news fnc/politics fnc b27c0d79-28b7-5acf-9ae2-11fb5eb56f9c article   Westlake Legal Group donald-trump-thumbs-up-2-AP Trump tweets support of Iranian anti-government protesters after Ukrainian passenger plane shot down Nick Givas fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/conflicts/ukraine fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox-news/person/donald-trump fox news fnc/politics fnc b27c0d79-28b7-5acf-9ae2-11fb5eb56f9c article

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Amb. Richard Grenell praises German diplomatic action as Trump calls for greater NATO role in Mideast conflict

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6121741146001_6121738711001-vs Amb. Richard Grenell praises German diplomatic action as Trump calls for greater NATO role in Mideast conflict Julia Musto fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/world-regions/germany fox-news/world/world-regions/europe fox-news/world/trade fox-news/world/terrorism fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox-news/us/terror/counter-terrorism fox-news/us/terror fox-news/politics/executive/white-house fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/angela-merkel fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox news fnc/media fnc article 9b8e13bd-c2b3-5f4a-8ad3-d6b3eebc9323 /FOX NEWS/SHOWS/Your World Cavuto/Interviews

Progress is being made in swaying European nations to get tough with Iran, U.S. Ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell said Saturday.

Appearing on “Cavuto LIVE,” Grenell said German Secretary-General Paul Ziemiak’s announcement that Germany and other European nations should move forward with sanctions on Iran marked a “real switch” from when Europeans were “going around the situation.”

TRUMP SAYS IRAN ‘APPEARS TO BE STANDING DOWN,’ MISSILE STRIKES RESULTED IN NO CASUALTIES

“Now the Europeans are talking about whether or not they should even be continuing in the [Iran nuclear deal] because of what they have seen from the Iranian regime. So, I think that we’re in a fundamentally different place and a better place,” Grenell said.

TRUMP SPEAKS TO NATO SECRETARY AFTER URGING WORLD BODY TO TAKE ON GREATER ROLE IN MIDEAST CONFLICT

On Wednesday, President Trump spoke to the secretary-general of NATO, Jens Stoltenberg, following the president’s nine-minute speech earlier in the day urging the organization to take a larger role in quelling strife in the Middle East.

A White House spokesman said Trump spoke to Stoltenberg and “emphasized the value of NATO increasing its role in preventing conflict and preserving peace in the Middle East,” according to Politico.

After speaking, Trump and Stoltenberg “agreed that NATO could contribute more to regional stability and the fight against international terrorism” and said they would be “in close contact on the issue,” according to a readout of the call.

Grenell echoed the president’s pleas: “We see that Iran is supporting terrorism, so let’s use diplomacy … through sanctions and through other economic means, to bring the Iranians to the table.”

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He told host Neil Cavuto that the European partners are very slow in coming around and taking action, which was one of the reasons he wanted to go to Germany and start prodding.

“One thing that is very clear … is that they can’t stay in some of these theaters unless the United States is there,” Grenell said. “When President Trump very bluntly says you know, ‘you’re welcome to form an international coalition and replace us, they immediately say well we can’t do that. We need the United States. And, so these are conversations that we have to have to push for them for greater participation.”

Fox News’ Vandana Rambaran contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6121741146001_6121738711001-vs Amb. Richard Grenell praises German diplomatic action as Trump calls for greater NATO role in Mideast conflict Julia Musto fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/world-regions/germany fox-news/world/world-regions/europe fox-news/world/trade fox-news/world/terrorism fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox-news/us/terror/counter-terrorism fox-news/us/terror fox-news/politics/executive/white-house fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/angela-merkel fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox news fnc/media fnc article 9b8e13bd-c2b3-5f4a-8ad3-d6b3eebc9323 /FOX NEWS/SHOWS/Your World Cavuto/Interviews   Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6121741146001_6121738711001-vs Amb. Richard Grenell praises German diplomatic action as Trump calls for greater NATO role in Mideast conflict Julia Musto fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/world-regions/germany fox-news/world/world-regions/europe fox-news/world/trade fox-news/world/terrorism fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox-news/us/terror/counter-terrorism fox-news/us/terror fox-news/politics/executive/white-house fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/angela-merkel fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox news fnc/media fnc article 9b8e13bd-c2b3-5f4a-8ad3-d6b3eebc9323 /FOX NEWS/SHOWS/Your World Cavuto/Interviews

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Brian Brenberg: Iran fears sanctions more than bullets — Economic pain is our most potent weapons

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6121463028001_6121463829001-vs Brian Brenberg: Iran fears sanctions more than bullets -- Economic pain is our most potent weapons fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox-news/politics/foreign-policy fox-news/politics/executive/white-house fox-news/politics/executive/national-security fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc Brian Brenberg article 49597404-438f-5ee5-a66f-072c9554f26f

With the killing of Iran’s General Qassem Soleimani and retaliation by Iran on U.S. bases in Iraq, many predict that military escalation is inevitable. But this view ignores the increasingly devastating effects of economic sanctions on Iran. The clear and compelling lesson of the past 18 months is that the U.S. doesn’t need to be drawn into war in order to curb Iran’s nuclear weapons ambitions.

Iran’s leaders face enormous and growing pressure at home as the country’s economy shrivels, and they’d like nothing more than to distract and unify the population with a “defensive” war with the West.

President Trump shouldn’t take the bait. Instead, he should stay the course of increasing economic pressure. Friday’s announcement that his administration will do just that is encouraging. Economic sanctions remain the most effective tactic to bring Iran back to the negotiating table in a weakened position and advance a safer, denuclearized world.

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The economic pain caused by U.S. sanctions is the reason Iran has lashed out against our military forces and allies, and it remains the most potent weapon to undermine the regime’s influence in the Middle East.

The reinstatement in 2018 of restrictions on trade with Iranian energy, shipping, and financial firms, and exclusion from U.S. markets for companies who trade with Iran, has hammered the Iranian economy. Gross Domestic Product shrank by nearly 5 percent in 2018 and is forecasted to fall by nearly 10 percent in 2019. As a result, the unemployment rate in Iran rose to nearly 17 percent last year, and the cost of living has skyrocketed as key imports dried up.

As Iran tries to up the ante with rockets and bullets, we need to remember that the most potent weapon we’ve deployed and can continue to use, is economic pressure that strikes at the heart of Iran’s energy, shipping, and financial sectors.

U.S.-led sanctions have also decimated Iran’s oil production and revenue as oil buyers faced a choice: abandon Iran or lose access to U.S. markets. Overwhelmingly, they abandoned Iran. As a result, Iran’s oil exports have plummeted and are expected to continue to plummet, depriving the Iranian regime of a key source of revenue to finance its military and the militias it backs in the Middle East.

As Iran’s economy shrinks, its people are showing little patience for the government draining the country’s resources on nuclear weapons development and military pursuits. Economic turmoil caused Iranians to take to the streets in November to protest against their government, leading to severe and highly unpopular crackdowns by authorities.

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The Iranian regime has gotten more aggressive militarily because it simply cannot respond to—and cannot withstand– the economic pressure the U.S. is exerting. As Iranian behavior now threatens to become even more reckless and desperate, it would be a mistake for the U.S. to abandon this advantage.

Iran’s leaders are eager to shift from an economic to a military battlefield. Economic pressure has sowed popular discord in Iran, pitted the authorities against the people, and deprived the Iranian military of resources. But military confrontation with the U.S. could have the opposite effect—energizing both popular support for the regime and Iran’s armed forces and Iranian-backed militias.  From Iran’s perspective, the best way to unify its population is to pull the U.S. out of an economic war and into a shooting war.

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Friday, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin announced that the administration would increase economic sanctions on Iran in response to Iran’s most recent attacks. The Trump administration’s restraint is prudent and strategic. As Iran tries to up the ante with rockets and bullets, we need to remember that the most potent weapon we’ve deployed and can continue to use, is economic pressure that strikes at the heart of Iran’s energy, shipping, and financial sectors.

Iran’s leaders know how to drag countries into demoralizing and prolonged military conflicts. It’s familiar territory for them, it’s a fight they think they can win, and they’re desperate to shift the focus away from the economic pain the U.S. has inflicted. The U.S. shouldn’t oblige. Sanctions have severely harmed Iran’s economy and deprived its leaders of resources and support. They’re lashing out because they’re out of options. We ought to keep it that way by sticking with the economic fight that Iran can’t win.

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Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6121463028001_6121463829001-vs Brian Brenberg: Iran fears sanctions more than bullets -- Economic pain is our most potent weapons fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox-news/politics/foreign-policy fox-news/politics/executive/white-house fox-news/politics/executive/national-security fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc Brian Brenberg article 49597404-438f-5ee5-a66f-072c9554f26f   Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6121463028001_6121463829001-vs Brian Brenberg: Iran fears sanctions more than bullets -- Economic pain is our most potent weapons fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox-news/politics/foreign-policy fox-news/politics/executive/white-house fox-news/politics/executive/national-security fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc Brian Brenberg article 49597404-438f-5ee5-a66f-072c9554f26f

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Pictures taken by US Special Operations forces show aftermath of strike that killed Soleimani

U.S. Special Operations forces on the ground in Iraq were following a convoy carrying Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani when it was struck by an American drone last week, killing Soleimani and nine others, Fox News has learned.

The soldiers following Soleimani’s convoy as it left Baghdad International Airport were about a half-mile behind when it was hit by a missile fired from a Reaper drone. They were on the scene within a minute or two and performed a so-called “bomb damage assessment,” taking pictures of the scene and confirming that the drone had picked out the right car — and that Soleimani was no more.

Westlake Legal Group Slideshow1 Pictures taken by US Special Operations forces show aftermath of strike that killed Soleimani Leland Vittert fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/world-regions/iraq fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox news fnc/world fnc ddaf351f-440d-54f0-8d19-ca08db28a9db article

The car that Qassem Soleimani was riding in at the time of his death.

Fox News has obtained pictures of the aftermath of the Jan. 3 drone strike from a U.S. government source. Some of the images — which Fox News will not show — include graphic, close-up views of Soleimani’s body, which is grossly disfigured and missing limbs. Another photo shows Soleimani’s body burning next to the car in which he was riding.

Westlake Legal Group Slideshow2 Pictures taken by US Special Operations forces show aftermath of strike that killed Soleimani Leland Vittert fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/world-regions/iraq fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox news fnc/world fnc ddaf351f-440d-54f0-8d19-ca08db28a9db article

Qassem Soleimani’s body lies burning next to the car.

The source told Fox News that U.S. forces dragged Soleimani’s body away from the scene and extinguished the fire before formally identifying the Iranian general. They took photos of his possessions, which included books of poetry and wads of cash. He was also carrying a pistol and an assault rifle.

Under normal circumstances, Soleimani’s phone and other electronics would be taken away for forensic analysis. However, the missile strike and ensuing fire made such an investigation impossible.

Westlake Legal Group Slideshow5 Pictures taken by US Special Operations forces show aftermath of strike that killed Soleimani Leland Vittert fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/world-regions/iraq fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox news fnc/world fnc ddaf351f-440d-54f0-8d19-ca08db28a9db article

Some of the items Soleimani was carrying when he died. His phone is partially visible at the top left.

Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, told Fox News: “If you see a wounded veteran missing a limb or seriously disfigured the odds are pretty good they were wounded by an IED that was designed and deployed under the direction of Soleimani.”

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In April 2019, the State Department announced that Iran was responsible for killing 608 U.S. troops during the Iraq War, with Soleimani responsible for 17 percent of all deaths of U.S. personnel in Iraq between 2003 and 2011.

A source who served in Iraq and saw the photos told Fox News that Soleimani died in much the same manner as the Americans he killed.

Westlake Legal Group Slideshow1 Pictures taken by US Special Operations forces show aftermath of strike that killed Soleimani Leland Vittert fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/world-regions/iraq fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox news fnc/world fnc ddaf351f-440d-54f0-8d19-ca08db28a9db article   Westlake Legal Group Slideshow1 Pictures taken by US Special Operations forces show aftermath of strike that killed Soleimani Leland Vittert fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/world-regions/iraq fox-news/world/conflicts/iran fox news fnc/world fnc ddaf351f-440d-54f0-8d19-ca08db28a9db article

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