So surprising was the death of Qassem Soleimani, former leader of the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps—Quds Force (IRGC—QF), that it was fair to suspect – at least initially – that he was killed by mistake. Perhaps America had meant to kill his travelling companion, the leader of Kataib Hezbollah Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, instead, with Soleimani merely (in that odd euphemism) collateral damage. Continue reading
It has long been known that Iran exerts significant power and possesses long reach in its neighbouring countries.
After the deposition of Saddam Hussein, and the subsequent withdrawal of the United States in 2011, Iran’s influence in Iraq became dominant. Continue reading
When they started at the beginning of October, protests in Iraq were attributed to general malaise in government and, crucially, the dismissal of Lieutenant-General Abdel-Wahab al-Saadi, a popular counterterrorism officer who had notably fought against the Islamic State. Continue reading