Iranian guards hold a picture of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani, during a protest against his killing, in front of the UN office in Tehran, on January 3, 2020 [WANA/Nazanin Tabatabaee via Reuters]

The assassination of Iranian general Qassem Soleimani has ushered in another turbulent decade for the Middle East. United States President Donald Trump‘s decision to greenlight the assassination of the head of the Quds Force, the paramilitary wing of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, is for all practical purposes a “declaration of war” with far-reaching implications for the region, especially Iraq.

US attempts to portray Soleimani as a master terrorist leader, like say, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levants’s (ISIL, or ISIS) Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is wrong and misses the big picture. Soleimani may have been controversial, even a bloody “shadow

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