Trump decided to assassinate Iranian leader after learning his 'maximum pressure' campaign flopped: report
President Donald Trump’s decision to assassinate Iranian general Qassim Suleimani reportedly came after his own administration had determined that his “maximum pressure” campaign of economic sanctions against the country had failed to curtail the country’s military operations.
The Daily Beast reports that the Trump White House “hoped it could gain enough leverage with sanctions to deter Tehran’s military aggression,” but that officials had now “determined that the maximum pressure campaign had not changed Tehran’s behavior, at least not militarily.”
In fact, Iran has only gotten more aggressive since the Trump administration hammered its economy with sanctions, which is what led some in the administration to push the president to attack a high-value target that eventually turned out to be Suleimani.
But killing Suleimani is seen as unlikely to curtail Iran’s behavior either.
“Virtually no one expects Iran to suddenly buckle with Soleimani’s death,” the Daily Beast reports. “If anything, the expectation is that Tehran will retaliate—and that America will respond with additional force, both economic and military. In that way, some version of maximum pressure may even grow more intense.”
Trump initiated his program of economic sanctions against Iran in 2018 after he pulled out of the nuclear arms control agreement that had been negotiated between Iran and the Obama administration.