BEIRUT (AP) – The Islamic State group is gloating over the recent U.S. killing of a senior Iranian general, who rose to prominence by advising forces fighting the extremists in Iraq. The first IS comments since the general’s killing say his death “pleased the hearts of believers.” The IS editorial was released in the group’s al-Nabaa online newspaper late Thursday. Although the U.S. and Iran strictly avoided working together directly, they were once on the same side in the fight against IS. Neither side wants to see the extremists stage a comeback. But as the various players in Iraq jockey to come out ahead in a post-Soleimani landscape, IS may find an opening.
In this aerial photo released by an official website of the office of the Iranian supreme leader, mourners attend a funeral ceremony for Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani and his comrades, who were killed in Iraq in a U.S. drone strike on Friday, in Tehran, Iran, Monday, Jan. 6, 2020. The processions mark the first time Iran honored a single man with a multi-city ceremony. (Office of the Iranian Supreme Leader via AP)