Washington / New Delhi: The Donald Trump administration killed Iran's most powerful military commander and intelligence chief, Major General Qasim Suleimani, not only to defeat Tehran in a non-conventional war, but also to deliver a message to Saudi Arabia. Iran, the dominant country of Shia Muslims, has been competing for dominance in West Asia, which has long been under the influence of Sunni chief Saudi Arabia. Although both countries are major oil producers. Saudi is the largest exporter of oil in the world.
After the US was banned for the third time in 2006 for stopping its uranium enrichment program on Iran, the country's economy suffered heavily. The Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), a branch of the Armed Forces of Iran, is trying to make up for the effects of US sanctions, headed by General Suleimani.
According to the dossier published in November 2019 by the London-based International Institute for Strategic Affairs (IISA), the Islamic Republic of Iran used sub-traditional warfare tactics for the first time since the 1979 revolution and formed the Shia militant group Hezbollah in Lebanon. This country's approach to increasing terrorist groups and abusing its rivals is not new.
Dozier claims that since the US overthrow of Saddam Hussein's regime in Iraq in 2003, Kurdish forces have intensified their operations there by providing training, money and weapons to Tehran-affiliated fighters. According to Dozier, Sulaimani armed and trained a paramilitary force called the Popular Mobilization Units (PMU), which helped defeat IS.
Sulaimani's influence grew rapidly after most of the sanctions were lifted in 2016 when Iran signed a deal with former US President Barack Obama to limit the extent of its nuclear program spanning at least 10 years. However, after the Donald Trump administration came to power, it decided to cancel the agreement with Iran, after which the tussle between the two countries grew significantly.