Qassem Soleimani is dead after a US drone air strike. President Trump tweeted an American Flag in response to the news, but what happened before this strike?
"What I think needs to be focused on is the December 27 attacks against the Kirkuk Air Base by Soleimani's group, someone he's supporting called Katif Hasblela, it has it's own commander who was also killed with Soleimani in the US drone strike," said Institute for Security Policy and Law Director of Research Corri Zoli.
In the attack of the Kirkuk Air Base, one person was killed and several U.S. and Iraqi service members were injured. Then on December 31 the same group attacked the US Embassy in Iraq.
"Important to do to not only establish deterrence but to let Iran know that you can't just attack a sovereign embassy or a military base of your neighbor and think there aren't going to be any repercussion,” said Zoli.
Now it's a matter of waiting to see what happens next.
"I think everyone is holding their breath in the Middle East right, there's significant concern that there will be increased conflict, escalation, dynamics that will involve retaliation,” said Zoli. There's no doubt that the US is preparing for that."
But there is another perspective Zoli says we should consider.
"With Soleimani gone, really the strategic mastermind of all these terrorist organizations, especially Iran ones, are in a holding pattern to a certain degree," said Zoli.
As for this starting a war, Zoli says the attack on the U.S. Embassy was already an act of covert or clandestine warfare
"We're already there, we're already in an open conflict with Iran," said Zoli.