Editor’s note: The following post was published in 2016. It goes a long way in showing the influence of Soleimani in the Middle East. A must-read for those delusional enough to think we killed an innocent man. 

It’s interesting to watch Shia influence in the Middle East unfold. It’s choreographed and efficient. I just saw reports that Qassem Soleimani is in Aleppo advising the regime. This guy is everywhere and represents the solidarity that Iranians provide to other Shia revolutionaries. I imagine it’s a star-struck and exciting feeling when Soleimani shows up to help with the effort. He is everywhere and is extremely prolific.

Syria is becoming increasingly crazed. We might even see Kurds fighting rebels fighting regime fighting ISIL. Yes, it’s that convoluted. I’m not sure what this has done besides defacto fueling a new generation of Jihadi fighters. The borders are becoming more porous and less meaningful, and nothing is left except sectarian and tribal identities.

Qassem Soleimani is famous and extremely relevant. He’s an example of how powerful an individual can be. Unfortunately, if we had such a talented general or leader, it would be difficult to identify him or her, because we have a system that is institutional in nature. But it works better than any other. Iran might be lucky it has a Qassem Soleimani, and it might just be that someone always steps up.