Qassem Soleimani
Qassem SoleimaniReuters

Hundreds of thousands of Iraqis have taken to the streets in recent weeks to protest against their government, prompting violent crackdowns. Security forces have killed at least 300 demonstrators so far and wounded thousands.

The protesters are angry about government corruption and widespread unemployment. Many of them are also frustrated at the degree of influence neighboring Iran wields in Iraq’s political affairs.

A recent report published jointly by the New York Times and the Intercept, based on hundreds of leaked Iranian intelligence documents, outlines just how deep that influence runs.

On the Foreign Policy podcast "First Person" this week, we spoke to the New York Times reporter Farnaz Fassihi. She was a member of the investigative team that brought the leaked cables to light. Fassihi is also the author of the book Waiting for An Ordinary Day, a memoir of her four years covering the Iraq War and witnessing the unraveling of social life for Iraqi citizens.