The Foreign Ministry, on the other hand, probably opposes Iran's military involvement in Syria lest it result in the Quds Force taking the lead on Iran's Syria policy. This may not only explain Mehmanparast stressing that Iran has "no military presence in the region," but also the Foreign Ministry's systematic attempts at mediating between the opposition and President Bashar al-Assad's regime.
The statements of Iranian military involvement can also be interpreted as the IRGC's way of threatening to increase its intervention, which would transform civil war in Syria into a regional war. The threat obviously aims to force Westerners, Turks, and Saudis to think twice before getting further embroiled in a proxy war. The ploy, however, could be too little, too late: Assad's regime may be beyond salvation, and increased IRGC presence in Syria is no guarantee for success.
According to the Wall Street Journal, a certain Brigadier General Hossein Hamadani has been sent to Syria to oversee the Quds Force's operations. It's not hard to understand why Hamadani would be chosen: According to his official biography Taklif Ast Baradar ("Brother, It's Duty"), he has extensive experience in suppressing the Kurdish separatist movements in Iranian Kurdistan in the immediate aftermath of the 1979 revolution and during the Iran-Iraq war. In 2005, Jafari, the founding commander of the IRGC Strategic Studies Center, appointed Hamadani his deputy, and together they devised doctrines to counter "velvet revolutions." In 2009 and 2010, Hamadani managed to effectively suppress anti-regime rallies in Tehran.
Hamadani's background may be of some help to him today. However, with the protests in Syria having developed into an armed rebellion, and with the rebels gaining access to more sophisticated weaponry, he may find himself fighting a very different war than the one he won against peaceful protesters in the streets of Tehran.