“I hereby determine that the specific threat with respect to former Secretary of State Michael Pompeo persists,” Bass wrote. He used identical language to refer to the threat against Hook.
The AP reported in March 2022 that the State Department was paying more than $2 million per month to provide 24-hour security to Pompeo and Hook. The latest determinations did not give a dollar amount for the protection.
Even as the Biden administration has made those determinations and spent money for Pompeo and Hook’s protection, it has continued to press ahead with indirect talks with Iran aimed at salvaging the 2015 Iran nuclear deal that Trump withdrew from in 2018.
Those talks have been stalled for many months now and the administration is pessimistic they will resume anytime soon. The administration has blamed Iran for the breakdown in talks, saying it has raised demands outside the scope of the deal, which gave Tehran billions in sanctions relief in return for curbs on its nuclear program.
In the meantime, Iran has launched a major crackdown on antigovernment protests sparked by the death of a woman in custody who was accused of violating a law requiring women to wear headscarves in public.
The notifications do not specifically identify Iran as the source of the threats, but Iranian officials have long vented anger at Pompeo and Hook for leading the Trump administration’s policy against Iran, including designating the Revolutionary Guard Corps a “foreign terrorist organization,” subjecting it to unprecedented sanctions and orchestrating the Soleimani assassination.