An Iranian strategic expert has warned that one of President Obama’s daughters will be kidnapped and raped if America attacks Syria.
Alireza Forghani, also the former governor of southern Iran’s Kish Province, warned of mass abductions and killings of American citizens worldwide in the event the Obama administration launches a military strike in Syria.
“Hopefully Obama will be pigheaded enough to attack Syria, and then we will see the loss of U.S. interests through terrorist attacks,” he threatened.
“In just 21 hours after the attack on Syria, a family member of every U.S. minister department secretary, U.S. ambassadors, U.S. military commanders around the world will be abducted.
And then 18 hours later, videos of their amputation will be spread around the world.” he said.
Claims: The U.S has intercepted an order from an Iranian official instructing militants inÂ Iraq to attack U.S. interests in Baghdad in the event the Obama administration launches a military strike in Syria, it was reported today
The American embassy in Baghdad was a likely target, according to unnamed U.S. officials.
The Journal said the officials did not describe the range of potential targets indicated by the intelligence.
In addition, the State Department issued a warning on Thursday telling U.S. citizens to avoid all but ‘essential’ travel to Iraq.
President Barack Obama has asked the U.S. Congress to back his plan for limited strikes in response to a chemical weapons attack on civilians that the United States blames on Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s forces.
The Journal reported that the Iranian message was intercepted in recent days and came from the head of the Revolutionary Guards’ Qods Force.
Target: The American embassy in Baghdad was a likely target, according to unnamed U.S. officials quoted
Scrutiny: Iraqi security forces stand guard in Baghdad today. In addition, the State Department issued a warning on Thursday telling U.S. citizens to avoid all but ‘essential’ travel to Iraq
The newspaper said the message went to Iranian-supported Shi’ite militia groups in Iraq.
The Journal reported that the message informed Shi’ite groups to be prepared to respond with force after any U.S. military strike on Syria.
“Travel within Iraq remains dangerous given the security situation,” according to the State Department’s warning, which replaced an earlier one “to update information on security incidents and to remind U.S. citizens of ongoing security concerns in Iraq, including kidnapping and terrorist violence.”
Group photo: Russia’s President Vladimir Putin, center front, stands with G-20 leaders during a group photo outside of the Konstantin Palace
Sunshine smiles: President Putin, left, President Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel and PM David Cameron as they pose for the family photo
The department said that numerous insurgent groups, including al Qaeda’s Iraq affiliate, remain active and ‘terrorist activity and sectarian violence persist in many areas of the country at levels unseen since 2008.’
It added: “The ability of the embassy to respond to situations in which U.S. citizens face difficulty, including arrests, is extremely limited.”
The State Department declined immediate comment. The CIA declined comment.
The US and France are so far the only nations attending the G20 to have backed the use of military force against the Assad regime, with Russia and China insisting that any action in the absence of UN Security Council approval would be illegal.
Italian Prime Minister Enrico Letta – who also attended this morning’s aid meeting – said in a tweet last night that “the G20 has just now finished the dinner session, at which the divisions about Syria were confirmed”.
Man on a mission: Obama has expanded a list of targets in Syria as he struggles to gather international support for military action
President Barack Obama, left, listens as Russian President Vladimir Putin, right, speaks during the start of the G-20 Working Session
US frustrations over Russia’s stance were reflected in comments by the American envoy to the UN, Samantha Power, who told a New York news conference: “Even in the wake of the flagrant shattering of the international norm against chemical weapons use, Russia continues to hold the (Security) Council hostage and shirk its international responsibilities.
What we have learned, what the Syrian people have learned, is that the Security Council the world needs to deal with this crisis is not the Security Council we have.”
The US Government accuses Assad’s forces of killing 1,429 people in a poison-gas attack in a suburb of the Syrian capital, Damascus, on August 21.
Britain announced yesterday that scientists at the Porton Down research laboratories have found traces of the nerve gas sarin on cloth and soil samples retrieved from the site of the attack.
Meanwhile, there were signs that Mr Obama may struggle to secure support in Congress for his proposal of “limited and proportionate” military action against Assad.
A poll commissioned by the BBC and ABC News suggested more than one-third of Congress members were undecided whether or not to back military action, while a majority of those who had made a decision said they would vote against the President.
The survey found that 226 members of the House of Representatives said they would oppose or were likely to oppose military action, against 45 who were certain or likely to support it and 189 who were undecided or did not respond.
Some 17 members of the Senate were certain or likely to oppose Mr Obama’s plans, against 23 certain or likely to back him and 60 whose position was undecided or unknown.