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Qasem Soleimani
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Military Personnel
    (March 11, 1957-January 3, 2020)
    Born in Rabor, Iran
    Major General
    Commander of the IRGC's Quds Force division since 1998
    Iranian Army of the Guardians of the Islamic Revolution leader
    Name is variously spelled as Qassem, Ghasem, and Ghassem
    Major player during the Iraq-Iran War (1980-1988)
    Participant in the 1979 Kurdish Rebellion
    Major player in the insurgency by the Kurdish Democratic Party of Iran (KDPI), from 1989 to 1996
    Gained increasing capital after the US invasion of Iraq, mainly by providing military aid to the al-Maliki government and the Shia militia
    Instrumental in providing military assistance to Hezbollah in Lebanon and Hamas in the Palestinian Territories
    Key ally of the Bashar Al-Assad regime against insurgents during the Syrian Civil War
    Major player in the Iraqi government's and Shia militia's combined offensive in the War Against Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) in 2014–2015
    Designated as a known terrorist, listed on the Terrorist Watch List, by the US Department of State (Mar. 2008)
    Ali Khamenei called him 'a living martyr.'
    He was nicknamed 'The Shadow Commander.'
    Richard Clarke called him 'the evil genius behind the Quds forces.'
    He was called 'truly evil' by General David Petraeus.
    Sanctions were placed against him by the United States in both 2007 and 2011.
    Central Intelligence compared him to Le Carre's soviet spy Karla and to the Usual Suspects' Keyser Söze ('he's everywhere and nowhere').
    He has been called a brash and presumptuous 'puppeteer,' prone to both undermining heads of state and working with them 'when he needs to.'
    He has indisputably close ties with the Shia leadership of Hezbollah, making a rare public appearance to attend the funeral of a major Hezbollah figure in 2008.
    Western sources accused him of abetting the Syrian government's use of chemical weapons and gas against insurgent rebels during the Syrian uprising (August 2013).
    He is responsible for the deaths of hundreds of American troops over the course of Operation Iraqi Freedom (e.g. providing Iraq with copper-tipped IEDs which claimed the lives of over 500 American soldiers and Marines).
    He was at the center of the outrage over the 2015 Iran Nuke Deal when it was revealed that he and several colleagues would have sanctions against them lifted (facts which were buried deep in an appendix within the agreement).
    He wrote an open letter to an Iranian filmmaker requesting that he cease producing a film about him and ordering officials to stop the 'exaggeration' about him on social media. The filmmaker responded that he had intended to use Soleimani only 'inspiration' and was not going to use his name in the film (Apr. 2015).
    He has been invaluable to the cause of kicking ISIS ass.
    He came from humble means - the son of a peasant who worked construction jobs before joining the military.
    He worked to crack down on drug smugglers in Afghanistan early in his career.
    He has the smoldering good looks of a villain in a James Bond movie.
    At least he was on the side of secular government during the Syrian Civil War, which was pretty much the lesser of two evils (the 'rebels' had ties to Al-Qaeda and ISIS).
    More charitable assessments of his public image paint him as the Middle-Eastern counterpart to Stanley McChrystal or 'Iran's own Erwin Rommel.'
    He is yet one more Middle Eastern leader to lay claim to the mantle of the Arab World's 'modern-day Saladin'; but he actually has credential to back those comparisons up.
    An Iraqi official described him as follows: 'There will be ten people in a room, and when Suleimani walks in ... He sits over there on the other side of room, by himself, in a very quiet way. Doesn’t speak, doesn’t comment, just sits and listens. And so of course everyone is thinking only about him.'
    He was the subject of a tense interview between Donald Trump and Hugh Hewitt when Trump mistakenly identified him as 'the leader of the Kurds,' before it derailed completely into an argument over 'gotcha questions' (Hewitt also incredulously dubbed him the 'Donald Trump of world terrorism'; 3 Sept. 2015).

Credit: BoyWiththeGreenHair

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