End of terror or start of war? Here’s what we know in wake of U.S. killing of Iran general

Iran calls a U.S. airstrike near Baghdad’s airport that killed a top Iranian general an “act of war.” The general had been the architect of its interventions across the Middle East, and the U.S. said Friday it was adding troops to the region as tensions soared in the wake of the targeted attack.

Update: An Iraqi official says an airstrike has hit two cars carrying Iran-backed militia north of Baghdad, one day after U.S. attack on top Iranian general Gen. Qassem Soleimani. The official said five members of the militia were killed. The official said the identity of those killed was not immediately known. He spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to talk to reporters.

Background: The killing of Gen. Qassem Soleimani, the head of Iran’s elite Quds Force, marks a major escalation in the standoff between Washington and Iran, which has careened from one crisis to another since President Donald Trump withdrew from the 2015 nuclear deal and imposed crippling sanctions.

The targeted strike, and any retaliation by Iran, could ignite a conflict that engulfs the whole region. Click below for more details on the many facets of this rapidly developing crisis.