Four Years Ago, Trump Had No Clue Who Iran’s Suleimani Was. Now He May Have Kicked Off WWIII. Mehdi Hasan January 3 2020, 7:56 a.m.

Iran is unique in the Muslim world because its population is overwhelmingly more Shia than Sunni (Shia constitute 95% of the population) and because its constitution is theocratic republic based on rule by a Shia jurist.

In Irans multimillennial existence – back when the self-determined borders of Persia, Asia Major and Asia Minor – Core Iranian Shia had never invaded another country but they also were a country not even the Wahabbi’s dared to invade. They have always made their neighbors allies, trade partners, proxies and external guards – so to speak UNTIL NOW!!

IN SEPTEMBER 2015, then-Republican presidential candidate Donald J. Trump appeared on the syndicated radio show of conservative media star, Hugh Hewitt, to talk foreign policy.

“Are you familiar with General Suleimani?” Hewitt asked the real estate mogul from Queens.

“Yes,” said Trump, before hesitating. “Go ahead, give me a little … tell me.”

When Hewitt told Trump that Suleimani “runs the Quds Forces,” Trump responded: “I think the Kurds, by the way, have been horribly mistreated by us.”

“No, not the Kurds, the Quds Forces,” Hewitt interjected. “The Iranian Revolutionary Guards, Quds Forces. The bad guys.”

“I thought you said Kurds,” a sheepish Trump replied.

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Got that? Candidate Trump confused the Quds Force, an elite Iranian military unit then led by high-profile Maj. Gen. Qassim Suleimani, with the Kurds, a high-profile ethnic group in the Middle East.

Now fast forward four years and four months to yesterday, when President Trump ordered the assassination of Suleimani from his golf course. In an official statement that misstated the name of the organization that Suleimani was in charge of, the Pentagon said the strike was “aimed at deterring future Iranian retaliation plans.”

This is not a column, however, about the consequences of the U.S. government assassinating the second-most powerful man in Iran (spoiler: they’re going to be dire!). Nor is it a column about the legality of such a deadly strike on a foreign official on foreign soil (spoiler: it’s hard to justify!).

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