The US military is authorizing the military to hunt down and kill Iranian operatives in Iraq:
For more than a year, U.S. forces in Iraq have secretly detained dozens of suspected Iranian agents, holding them for three to four days at a time. The “catch and release” policy was designed to avoid escalating tensions with Iran and yet intimidate its emissaries. U.S. forces collected DNA samples from some of the Iranians without their knowledge, subjected others to retina scans, and fingerprinted and photographed all of them before letting them go.
Last summer, however, senior administration officials decided that a more confrontational approach was necessary, as Iran’s regional influence grew and U.S. efforts to isolate Tehran appeared to be failing. The country’s nuclear work was advancing, U.S. allies were resisting robust sanctions against the Tehran government, and Iran was aggravating sectarian violence in Iraq.
Indeed, the evidence is as close to a “smoking gun” as there can be — Iranian agents are actively working to undermine Iraqi sovereignty and assist terrorist group in killing US forces. These acts are tantamount to acts of war, and the US is well within their right to treat Iranian forces as the combatants that they are.
We have to take the gloves off in this war, and this is a positive sign that we are doing exactly that. Iran’s complicity in the conflict in Iraq is undeniable, yet Iran has suffered few to no consequences for their actions. The only way to secure Iraq is to prevent these foreign interlopers from feeding sectarian tensions and supporting terrorist groups. That requires us to put a great deal of pressure on Iran to stop — including the use of military force.