Author Archives: Amir Toumaj

Amir Toumaj is a Research Analyst at Foundation for Defense of Democracies.

Qassem Soleimani credits supreme leader with recent victories

Iranian media report that Qassem Soleimani, the commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Qods Force, has delivered an address extolling the leadership of Ali Khamenei, supreme leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran. Soleimani is back in Iran after visiting eastern Aleppo, and purportedly inspecting an Iraqi Shiite militia last month.


IRGC Qods Force chief spotted in Aleppo

Photos have emerged of Qassem Soleimani, the commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Qods Force, in Aleppo, Syria. Forces allied with the Syrian government declared victory this past week.


IRGC officers killed in Palmyra

As the Islamic State has taken the ancient city of Palmyra and battle rages on in the outskirts for T4 military air base, two Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) officers have been announced killed in Palmyra. IRGC-backed Fatemiyoun Division have fought in the area, augmenting Syrian forces backed by Russian air power.



Analysis: Iraqi Popular Mobilization Forces in Iran’s game plan

The Iraqi Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF) have announced plans about securing the border with Syria and pushing into the country following the Islamic State’s defeat in Iraq. There are discussions in Western policy circles that PMF’s movement is part of a broader Iranian strategy to establish a land corridor stretching from Iraq to the Mediterranean. However, Iran already exercises freedom of movement via its air bridge to Syria, and is unlikely to risk hard-fought gains for building a sustainable land bridge. Tehran has other plans for Iraq and Syria, in which the PMF plays important roles.



Abu Azrael spotted during PMF’s Mosul operation

Iraqi Shiite militia strongman and Imam Ali Brigades commander, Abu Azrael, was spotted¬†alongside the Iraqi Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF) as they make their way¬†through the western axis of Mosul toward Tal Afar. The PMF is attempting to prevent the Islamic State’s escape to Syria through Tal Afar, which is 33 miles west of Mosul. Abu […]


Iraqi PMF attempts to cut off Islamic State in Mosul

Iranian-backed Iraqi Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF) launched an operation in the western axis of Mosul on Oct. 30, and announced on Nov. 2 that they cut off the Islamic State’s supply route from Mosul to Raqqa. The PMF is advancing towards the town of Tal Afar west of Mosul, which has Sunni Turkmen population.