I've long thought there was a good study to be done of Iranian advisory efforts in Iraq. They seemed to me a model of long-term, low-key influence. No big bases, but lots of effects.
Now maybe it seems that study should be expanded to Syria. An Iranian official, speaking about the Qods Force (AKA the foreign operations wing of the Revolutionary Guard) said over the weekend that, "A number of members of the Qods force are present in Syria but this does not constitute a military presence."
An Iranian foundation also has reportedly upped the amount of the bounty it has placed on the head of Salman Rushdie. Can you imagine if American foundations did stuff like that?
Meanwhile, someone blew up a bomb on the July 14 bridge into the Green Zone and killed a bunch of people at the checkpoint. I've walked across that bridge a lot. It was my point of maximum vulnerability, when I was outside the Green Zone yet not back in the able hands of the Washington Post security guys.
Thomas E. Ricks covered the U.S. military for the Washington Post from 2000 through 2008.