FPI / January 22, 2020
Still reeling from the loss of terror kingpin Qasem Soleimani, Iran suffered another major humiliation when its so-called elite aerospace forces mistakenly shot down a Ukrainian passenger plane.
The twin setbacks, from which the Islamic Republic may never fully recover, could be seen in the nation’s media.
Soon after the U.S. strike which eliminated the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) Quds Force commander, the Tasnim News agency cited Maj. Gen. Hossein Salami, leader of (IRGC), as saying just how vital Soleimani was to the ruling mullahs and the nation’s military.
“We are today absent a great commander, an unforgettable [man] who embraced all the divine virtues,” Salami said. He spoke of Soleimani in religious terms, speaking of his modesty and popularity.
After the loss of Soleimani, the IRGC then saw its elite and technologically significant Aerospace force tarnished by shooting down the Ukrainian passenger plane, killing all 176 people on board.
IRGC commander Ali Hajizadeh, who was supposed to be planning operations abroad, is now reportedly under a cloud and his entire command has been humiliated.
“Taken together the comments in Iranian media show the regime has a huge hole in the wake of Soleimani’s death,” Seth Frantzman wrote for the Jerusalem Post on Jan. 21. “Iran’s regime lost its pilot.”