World War 3 memes are trending after US strike on Iranian official

3 January 2020, 15:54 | Updated: 3 January 2020, 15:58

President Donald Trump and Qassem Soleimani
President Donald Trump and Qassem Soleimani. Picture: SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images, Pool / Press Office of Iranian Supreme Leader/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images
Jazmin Duribe

By Jazmin Duribe

World War III started trending on Twitter after the killing of Iranian general Qasem Soleimani in a US airstrike.

The internet has the ability to turn just about anything into a meme – no matter just how serious the topic is. On Friday (3 Jan), World War III memes started sweeping Twitter following news of growing tensions between the US and Iran.

In 2018, US President Donald Trump decided to withdraw from Iran's nuclear deal, which also includes the UK, France, China, Russia and Germany. The deal was struck up under former US President Barack Obama. In May 2019, the US blamed Iran for damaging four of their oil tankers off the coast of the United Arab Emirates, which they denied. Iran also shot down an American surveillance drone claiming it was in their airspace, although the US insisted it was in international territory.

READ MORE: The best memes of 2020 (so far)

This week (31 Dec), protesters stormed the US embassy in Baghdad and set fire to a guard tower and reception area. President Trump blamed Iran for being behind the attack.

Why is World War 3 trending?

World War 3 started trending after Iranian general Qasem Soleimani was killed in a US airstrike near Baghdad airport on the orders of President Donald Trump. The attack was conducted by an armed American drone, according to a US official, and eight others were also killed.

On Twitter, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani promised Iran would "take revenge" following Soleimani's death. There have already been protests in Iran and Kargil in India.

He tweeted: "The flag of General Soleimani in defense of the country's territorial integrity and the fight against terrorism and extremism in the region will be raised, and the path of resistance to US excesses will continue. The great nation of Iran will take revenge for this heinous crime."

Soon, the internet were posting memes about the possibility of WWIII erupting.

We really all hoped 2020 would be a peaceful year.

Memes aside, war is a serious matter. There are never any winners during war and masses of civilian lives could be lost – sadly, most probably on the Iranian side. Let's hope it doesn't come that.