The targeted killing by the US of Qassem Soleimani, commander of the Quds Force and close confidant of Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, has unsettled the region and the world. The Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies have assembled initial takes on this event by five BESA researchers: Prof. Hillel Frisch, Prof. Eytan Gilboa, Maj. Gen. (res.) Gershon Hacohen, Dr. Doron Itzchakov, and Dr. Alex Joffe.
“The killing of Number Two in any country creates a devastating chain of destructive suspicion and anxiety in the corridors of power. Khamenei’s only choice in naming a successor was to choose from among old stalwarts who are above suspicion. Every individual who is newer to the organization and to the wider security network is now suspect. Many will no doubt be removed if not executed as Iranian counterintelligence teams try to identify the informants. The problem for the regime is figuring out who is going to replace them.” Writes Hillel Frisch.
Mideast Security and Policy Studies Paper #168 – download here