RNA – Addressing a large and fervent congregation of the people in Tehran on Friday, Hujjat al-Islam Sayyed Mohammad-Hasan Aboutorabifard, “The elite force (the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps) has managed to destroy the United States’ fictitious and artificial grandeur in the region.”
“This operation initiated the end of the American’ illegal presence in the territory of the Islamic World,” the senior cleric added, according to Fars News Agency.
Lieutenant General Soleymani was assassinated in an American drone strike on Baghdad International Airport in Iraq on January 3.
The airstrike also martyred Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, deputy commander of Iraq's Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF). The two were martyred in an American airstrike that targeted their vehicle on the road to the airport.
Five Iranian and five Iraqi militaries were martyred by missiles fired by the American drone at Baghdad International Airport.
On January 8, the IRGC Aerospace Force started heavy ballistic missile attacks on the American Ayn al-Asad airbase in Southwestern Iraq near the border with Syria and an American operated airbase in Erbil in retaliation for the American assassination of General Soleymani.
Ayn al-Asad is an airbase with a 4-kilometre runway at 188 metre altitude from sea levels, which is the main and the largest American airbase in Iraq. Early reports said the radar systems and missile defence shields in Ayn al-Asad failed to operate and intercept the Iranian missiles. Unofficial reports said the American army's central radar systems at Ayn al-Asad had been jammed by electronic warfare.
The second IRGC reprisal attack targeted an American military base near Erbil airport in Iraqi Kurdistan Region in the second leg of "Martyr Soleymani" reprisal operation.
Iraq said the attacks had not taken any toll from its army men stationed at these two bases. The American army had blocked entrance into Ayn al-Asad to everyone, including the Iraqi army.
It was the first direct attack on the American army ever since world war two.
The IRGC officials said none of the missiles had been intercepted.