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With the sudden rise of the terrorist Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS), a little-noted aspect is that Gen. Qasem Suleimani, the supposed strategic genius of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps, has blundered disastrously.By overreaching in Iraq and Syria and triggering a violent response, Iran now faces dangerous instability on its border for years to come.Iran is now rushing to mobilize its Iraqi allies to stop the marauding Sunni insurgents from seizing Baghdad's airport. The Iranians, watching the collapse of the U.S.-trained Iraqi army, have turned to Shiite militias that are trained and run by Suleimani's operatives. A Kurdish state could rouse nationalist feelings among Iranian Kurds, who make up at least 10 percent of Iran's population, creating domestic instability.For Suleimani, it's a lose-lose situation.Gone, too, is Suleimani's hope that Iran can avoid being seen as a Shiite, Persian power in a predominately Sunni Arab world.
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