Politico reported Sunday that U.S. officials have discovered an assassination plot aimed at U.S. Ambassador to South Africa Lana Marks.
The plan reportedly originates from Iran and comes as retaliation for the U.S. killing of top Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani in January of this year.
The death of Soleimani
The death of Soleimani came at the hands of a deadly drone strike that was carried out with the OK of President Donald Trump.
By all accounts, Soleimani was a terrorist who was personally responsible for the death of hundreds of U.S. soldiers and countless innocent civilians, and taking him out was seen as an achievement for the U.S. military.
Even still, some warned that the killing could escalate tensions between Iran and the United States. Soon after, Iran launched a missile attack at a base housing U.S. troops that was largely brushed off, but many believed there was going to be something bigger down the road.
Now, it seems Iran is ready to turn up the heat.
An attack on an ambassador?
Politico said it spoke with a “U.S. government official familiar with the issue and another official who has seen the intelligence,” who told them that “U.S. officials have been aware of a general threat against the ambassador…since the spring.”
“But the intelligence about the threat to the ambassador has become more specific in recent weeks,” Politico reported. “The Iranian Embassy in Pretoria is involved in the plot, the U.S. government official said.”
According to Politico, Marks has been notified of the threat against her, but it remains unclear why she, in particular, would be targeted.
Marks was not reported to have any ties to Iran.
The 66-year-old ambassador was first sworn in last October, Politico reported, and has been a friend of Trump’s for decades. She is known by supporters as “a successful businesswoman — her eponymous handbags run as much as $40,000 — with numerous international connections,” according to Politico.
If an attempt at assassination is indeed carried out against Marks, we can only expect President Trump to respond with an iron-fist strategy. Attacks on Americans at home or abroad can’t — and won’t — be tolerated.