Major General Qassem Suleimani of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps’ “Al-Quds Force” only stands 174cm tall, but the magnitude of his presence can be felt by everyone that encounters him; this same presence makes thousands of men entrust him to lead them in battle, whether in Syria, Iraq, or any country that requires his assistance.
Two months ago, the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and National Defense Forces (NDF) appeared battered and overstretched, losing several kilometers of territory to both the Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham (ISIS) and the Islamist rebels.
However, this situation changed in early October when Major General Qassem Suleimani arrived to the Bassel Al-Assad International Airport in Jableh, Latakia alongside several officers from the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC).
Immediately upon his arrival, Major General Suleimani was transported to the IRGC’s main military base in Slunfeh, Latakia; this is the site where he delivered his uplifting speech to the hundreds of Iraqi, Iranian, Pakistani, and Afghani paramilitary fighters that were preparing to deploy to the Aleppo Governorate.
The following day, Major General Suleimani arrived to the Syrian Government stronghold of Al-Safira in southern Aleppo after taking an arduous and long journey through the volatile Khanasser-Aleppo Highway.
For the last 40 days, Major General Suleimani has been entrenched with the thousands of soldiers and paramilitary fighters he is commanding along the southern Aleppo front.
Among the groups Major General Suleimani’s commanding in southern Aleppo are the following: the Syrian Arab Army’s 4th Mechanized Division, Hezbollah, Harakat Al-Nujaba (Iraqi), Kataebat Hezbollah (Iraqi), Liwaa Abu Fadl Al-Abbas (Iraqi), and Firqa Fatayyemoun (Iranian/Afghani).
Currently, Major General Suleimani remains in southern – he has not left, despite some claims that he has moved to a different front; most notably, the Deir Hafer Plains, where the Tiger Forces recently liberated the Kuweires Airport.
Where is Major General Suleimani going next? This is to be continued…