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Report: US secretly warned Iran of terror threat ahead of Jan. 3 attack

Jan 26

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It’s no secret that the relationship between the U.S. and Iran is on rocky ground. Iranian-backed Houthi rebels continue to launch attacks on ships in the Red Sea while other militant groups allied with Iran step up attacks on American forces in Iraq and Syria. But a new report said the U.S. put aside those differences when it secretly warned Iran before a deadly terrorist attack on Jan. 3.

Video captured the moments immediately after two bombs went off at a memorial in Kerman, Iran, for Gen. Qassem Soleimani — the Iranian general killed in a U.S. strike four years ago.

The bombings killed 84 people and wounded an additional 284. Initially, Iran blamed Israel for the bombings, with Iranian officials promising revenge against anyone behind the attack.

“We will not be silent until justice is served,” Kazem Gharibabadi, Iran’s deputy of international affairs of the judiciary, told reporters. “We have various capacities to deal with terrorist groups, and naturally, we will use all of them, such as intelligence and security capacities. And other tools we have for the administration of justice.”

On Jan. 4, a day after the attack, an Islamic State affiliate, ISIS-Khorasan, claimed responsibility for the bombings.

According to the Wall Street Journal, U.S. officials privately warned Iran of a terror threat ahead of the deadly bombings. An official reportedly said the U.S. government followed a longstanding “duty to warn policy.”

“Prior to ISIS’s terrorist attack on Jan. 3, 2024, in Kerman, Iran, the U.S. government provided Iran with a private warning that there was a terrorist threat within Iranian borders,” a U.S. official said. “The U.S. government followed a longstanding ‘duty to warn’ policy that has been implemented across administrations to warn governments against potential lethal threats. We provide these warnings in part because we do not want to see innocent lives lost in terror attacks.”

According to documents obtained by Columbia University through the Freedom of Information Act, the duty to warn policy requires anyone in the intelligence community who “collects or acquires credible and specific information indicating an impending threat directed at a person or group has a duty to warn the intended victim(s) or those responsible for protecting the intended victim(s).”

The Journal said intel about the impending terror attack was timely enough to help Iran potentially stop the bombings. Some experts said the secret warning from the U.S. may have been an olive branch to spark meaningful dialogue and build trust with Iran.

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[KARAH RUCKER]

IT’S NO SECRET THAT THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN THE U.S. AND IRAN IS ON ROCKY GROUND. IRANIAN-BACKED HOUTHI REBELS CONTINUE TO LAUNCH ATTACKS ON SHIPS IN THE RED SEA. OTHER MILITIANT GROUPS ALLIED WITH IRAN STEP UP ATTACKS ON AMERICAN FORCES IN IRAQ AND SYRIA.

A NEW REPORT SAYS THE U.S. PUT ASIDE THOSE DIFFERENCES WHEN IT SECRETLY  WARNED IRAN BEFORE A DEADLY TERRORIST ATTACK EARLIER THIS MONTH.

THIS VIDEO CAPTURED THE MOMENTS IMMEDIATELY AFTER TWO BOMBS WENT OFF AT A MEMORIAL IN KERMAN IRAN FOR QASSAM SOLEIAMANI, THE  IRANIAN GENERAL KILLED IN A U.S. STRIKE FOUR YEARS AGO.

THE BOMBING KILLED 84 PEOPLE WOUNDING AN ADDITIONAL 284.

INITIALLY IRAN BLAMED ISRAEL FOR THE ATTACK. WITH IRANIAN OFFICIALS PROMISING REVENGE AGAINST ANYONE BEHIND THE ATTACK.

Kazem Gharibabadi, Iran’s deputy of international affairs of the judiciary: “We will not be silent until justice is served. We have various capacities to deal with terrorist groups, and naturally, we will use all of them, such as intelligence and security capacities. And other tools we have for the administration of justice.”

[KARAH RUCKER]

A DAY AFTER THE ATTACK, AN ISLAMIC STATE AFFILIATE, ISIS-K, CLAIMED RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE BOMBINGS.

NOW, ACCORDING TO THE WALL STREET JOURNAL, U-S OFFICIALS PRIVATELY WARNED IRAN OF A TERROR THREAT AHEAD OF THE DEADLY BOMBINGS.

AN OFFICIAL REPORTEDLY SAYING THE U-S GOVERNMENT FOLLOWED A LONG STANDING “DUTY TO WARN POLICY” – 

“Prior to ISIS’s terrorist attack on January 3, 2024, in Kerman, Iran, the US government provided Iran with a private warning that there was a terrorist threat within Iranian borders.”

ACCORDING TO DOCUMENTS FOIA-ED BY COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY,, THE “DUTY TO WARN POLICY” REQUIRES ANYONE IN THE INTELLIGENCE COMMUNITY WHO: 

“…collects or acquires credible and specific information indicating an impending threat directed at a person or group has a duty to warn the intended victim(s) or those responsible for protecting the intended victim(s).”

THE JOURNAL SAID INTEL ABOUT THE IMPENDING TERROR ATTACK WAS TIMELY ENOUGH TO HELP IRAN POTENTIALLY STOP THE JAN. 3 BOMBINGS.

SOME EXPERTS SAY THAT THE SECRET WARNING FROM THE U.S. MAY HAVE BEEN  AN OLIVE BRANCH TO SPARK MEANINGFUL DIALOGUE TO BUILD TRUST WITH IRAN.