Mourners attend a funeral ceremony for Iranian Maj. Gen. Qassem Soleimani and others who were killed in Iraq in a U.S. drone strike, in Kerman, Iran, Jan. 7, 2020 (Tasnim News Agency photo by Erfan Kouchari via AP Images).

Reactions in the United States to the killing of Iranian Maj. Gen. Qassem Soleimani have tended to fall into three broad categories. Those who support the strike argue that it eliminated a uniquely irreplaceable figure advancing Iran’s regional influence, while also reestablishing deterrence against Tehran. Those who oppose it fall into two groups. Some warn that by killing Soleimani, the U.S. took a step up the escalation ladder that will inevitably lead to open conflict with Iran. Others say that even short of causing all-out war, the strike was ill-advised because its strategic costs outweigh its benefits. The first argument […]

A protester waves the national flag near Tahrir Square during a demonstration against an Iranian missile strike, in Baghdad, Iraq, Jan. 8, 2020 (AP photo by Khalid Mohammed).

Nearly a week after the United States military assassinated Qassem Soleimani, a top Iranian general who headed the elite Quds Force of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, in Baghdad, a huge rift has opened up in the U.S. relationship with Iraq. A high-ranking Iraqi militia commander, Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, was also killed in the U.S. strike, angering many Iraqis. And on Sunday, the Iraqi parliament passed a nonbinding resolution urging the government to expel U.S. troops from Iraq, although the Trump administration insists it plans to stay. For this week’s interview on Trend Lines, WPR’s Elliot Waldman is joined by […]

Iranian Maj. Gen. Qassem Soleimani, center, attends a meeting with Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and Revolutionary Guard commanders in Tehran, Iran, Sept. 18, 2016 (Office of the Iranian Supreme Leader via AP Images).

In this week’s editors’ discussion on Trend Lines, WPR’s Judah Grunstein and Freddy Deknatel talk about the U.S. assassination of Iranian Maj. Gen. Qassem Soleimani, the powerful head of the Quds Force of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps, and its impact on Iran’s regional influence operations. They also discuss the potential for escalation in the U.S.-Iran conflict and the implications for U.S. ties with Iraq. If you like what you hear on Trend Lines and what you’ve read on WPR, you can sign up for our free newsletter to get our uncompromising analysis delivered straight to your inbox. The newsletter […]