the murder of The general iranian Qasem Soleimani in Baghdad last Friday by a drone sent by the united States has led to an escalation of threats between both parties. Iran promises a “hard revenge” and president Donald Trump a replica blunt if there is a retaliation against us interests. Tehran has given a first response to the crisis with their exit from key commitments in the nuclear agreement, and weighs his options while the tension runs through the region.
A direct confrontation with the first military power would be a disaster for Iran. But the features geostrategic in the region and the development of skills of confrontation asymmetrical allow you to have alternatives on the table, despite the fact that sanctions american following the departure of Washington's nuclear deal in 2018 have made a dent in the capacity of economic, and therefore military of the Islamic Republic.
MORE INFORMATIONUp, crowded in Tehran at the funeral of general Soleimani Iran weighs up its options Tehran announces that they will no longer respect the limits of the nuclear accord
The Armed Forces of Iran have to 530,000 troops, the most numerous of the region. The military expenditure —of between 13.000 and 20.000 million dollars in 2018, according to the International Institute of Peace Research and the International Institute of Strategic Studies, respectively— we are well below the spending of Saudi Arabia, approximately four times larger and light years ahead of the us spending.
Of the total of effective, nearly 350,000 belong to the regular army and 125,000 in the revolutionary Guards (the Pasdarán), which constitute the military force more powerful and better able of the Islamic Republic. The Quds force is the elite corps of the Pasdarán for foreign missions and has 7,000 military trained for unconventional war. The head of this unit reports directly to the iranian leader.
One of the capabilities asymmetric Iran cultivated to compensate for its inferiority in conventional in several domains is the network of militias, mainly shiite that the Quds force has promoted in the middle East. Among them, stand out Hezbollah in Lebanon, the Forces of Popular Mobilization by iraqi paramilitaries prorrégimen syrians and the Huthi in Yemen. Although these groups are facing serious local challenges, are aware that they must close ranks before the impetus of the united States to guarantee their survival.
to compensate For their inferiority in aviation (for example against opponents such as Israel and Saudi Arabia), Iran has cultivated a remarkable program missile that puts him in the forefront in the region in this field. Despite u.s. sanctions, Tehran has managed to develop over the last three decades of their own military technology, achieving a momentum of their own of the technology transfer to china during the war against Iraq in the mid-eighties. It is estimated that you have at least a hundred antiship missiles of different types deployed in the strait of Hormuz and the Persian gulf. One of these missiles class C-801 launched by Hezbollah during the Lebanon war of 2006, it amounted to a corvette of the israeli and left four casualties.
Many strategic objectives in the Persian gulf, and even Israel are within the range of iranian missile. The US gave up in may last year the system Patriot missile in the Persian gulf countries, especially Saudi Arabia, to defend them against the threat of ballistic missiles and cruise. But the Patriot failed to attack hybrids, missiles and drones to the refinery of Aramco in Saudi Arabia in September last year.
Iran has also developed the technology of the drones and in 2016 had the opportunity to test them in the field of battle against the Islamic State (ISIS, for its acronym in English), even used its bases in Syria for raids into israeli airspace in order to evaluate the capabilities of their products.
At the end of the eighties, the Navy, the iranian went on to function as a body classic Army to become one even hybrid prepared for fighting asymmetrical. The Navy iran has nearly 20,000 troops and, in addition to numerous boats rocket of domestic production, has a score of frigates, production china and half a hundred boats military technology Swedish. Added to this are three Russian submarines Class Kilo, whose ability to operate in shallow waters of the Persian gulf constitutes a major threat. A submersible of that category of North Korea torpedeó a frigate in south korea and caused 46 deaths in 2010. The Revolutionary Guard also has the capability of naval.
For the new dashboard regional not all the letters are military, since Iran is facing an economic war that is harassing more and more vulnerable sectors, the main social base of the Islamic Republic. Although the upheaval caused by the murder unexpected Soleimani distract the public opinion from the internal crisis, its sedative effect will not last long, and the iranian authorities, aware of the economic difficulties, have limited his room to maneuver.Updated Date: 07 January 2020, 00:00