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26 April 2020

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Leith

Iran wants to become a UAV superpower. The Iran Air Force (IRIAF) commander claims that Iran is among the top five countries of the world in manufacturing drones.

Our ONI (Office of Naval Intel) states that the study UAV tactics and technology is one of the major pillars of the curriculum at the Imam Khamenei Naval Academy. I assume that is similar for aspiring cadets in the Air and Ground Forces.

They like to use them in swarms similar to the fast attack boat swarms. Last year they had a field exercise where 50 drones destroyed targets on an island in the Gulf:
https://youtu.be/15mG0FUqlk4

J

They can contact DARPA for assistance.

JohninMK

The US military are certainly checking out Iran's new satellite. Here is a comment.

Gen. Jay Raymond
@SpaceForceCSO
· 22h
@US_SpaceCom continues to track 2 objects @PeteAFB’s @18SPCS associated w/#space launch from Iran, characterizing NOUR 01(#SATCAT 45529) as 3U Cubesat. Iran states it has imaging capabilities—actually, it’s a tumbling webcam in space; unlikely providing intel. #spaceishard

JamesT

Colonel,

To my mind this ties in with the military satellite that Iran is reported to have recently put into orbit. A satellite can possibly provide (i) location of targets to the IRGC unit dispatching and controlling such a drone, (ii) a data link to the drone.

JamesT

JohninMK,

Wow. Space is harder than I realized.

turcopolier

All

I would expect that Iran will be launching satellites until it gets the technique right for recce and commo relay.

TV

Iran should name the missile "The Obama."

Leonard Strauss

This is another indication of the still-ongoing RMA in Iran. The drone doctrine is in fact being taken into the next level in terms of specialization and mastery and in accordance with extra-territorial power projection capabalities.

The nature of military strategy in the ME is extremely complex and subject to volatility and change, and one could even argue that any classic long term military strategy in the ME needs to be uppended by irregular warfare tactics and for achieving short term/gradual gains on the ground rather than immidiate superiority, which is assumed to be extremely hard to achieve by classical/conventional means.

Another point to note is the purpose behind various aspects of Iranian defense industries, which I would assume, is not a for-profit enterprise, but tailored predominantly for use by the Iranian forces and or its reliable allies. This especially makes it more effective, reliable, and cost effective, as opposed to the for-profit nature of the American/Western European defense industries. Examples: the failure of the MIM-104 Patriot system to intercept and destroy the Houthis' attack on Aramco oil installation in 2019, SAM-3's (1950s design) shot-down of the high-tech F-117 Stealth bomber over Serbia. Note that, I am not suggesting the Western-made arms are inferior to the ones made in the more socialized defense industries of other countries, but I think the former would try to balance between domestic use and exportability, while the latter would only concern itself with domestic-use (or close allies for that matter). For example in the case of the Russian-made hypersonic missiles that is being said in that has made the U.S. first-strike capability obsolete, I would assume that in achieving that, the Russian military and defense strategists were less concerned with the development/deployment aspect compared to the U.S. which has a series of concerns to take into account before embarking on major military strategy plannings (e.g. her allies, NATO, compatibility-integration with allies, exportability, proliferation, etc.)

Fred

Leonard,

"first-strike capability" That was never our dectrine nor does anyone's hypersonic missle negate anyone's first strike capability, unless it is an anti-ICBM defense; and only if it works in combat, which nobody sane wants to test in action.

Serge

Twitter thread on pro-Israeli themes in this year's Gulfie Ramadan serial programming
https://twitter.com/hxhassan/status/1254626741886365696

I prefer the far superior Syrian classics from the 2000s tbh:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mVHl8FhGr1Q

Leith

Leonard Strauss -

Your assumption about most of Iran's defense industry as not-for-profit is correct.

From Global Security dot org: "Four state-owned organizations constituted the main elements of the defense industrial base. The Military Industries Organization (MIO) was the main control center, and also produced small arms, rockets, mortars, and artillery. The Iran Aircraft Industries (IAI) focused on fighters, the Iran Helicopter Industries (IHI) on helicopters, and the Iran Electronics Industry (IEI) on defense electronics."

Some here in the US claim it was our own fault that Iran developed expertise in defense manufacturing. They were mostly an agrarian society until WW2 when we established aircraft, truck and other defense factories there to supply the Soviets via the Persian Corridor, which BTW transported double the tonnage of the Arkhangelsk-Murmansk convoys. With the exception of a single US engineer all factory workers and management were local Iranians. They did good work with minimal training. There was no monkey-see-monkey-do, they are a smart people. That petered out after the war. But later in the 70s the Shah re-implemanted local manufacturing, repair and maintenance of military equipment instead of buying everything overseas, we gave him licensing, blueprints, and specifications.

FkDahl

How do Iran expect to relay the signal to these drones? Is it through longer wave length radio that allows over the horizon?

Leonard Strauss

Leith,

I agree with with your statement about the Shah's pivot to more independence in the defense sector in he 70s.

I would like to also add that, the Nixon Doctrine and the Carter Doctrine influence Iran's regional security and the more broader Cold-War considerations in the late 60s and mid 70s that ultimately had implications for its domestic defense industries capabilities. The former, gave Iran a relative freedom in building-up its own defense capabilities to contain Soviet Union in the North and Arab Ba'athists (socailsits) in East and South (more cost effective), while at the same time due to the 73' oil shock, it was able to buy tons of top-grade U.S. arms and still remain a close U.S. ally. While the latter, was more focused on energy security from the ME and had 'reservations' about pro-U.S. dictatorships and sought them to be democratic and pro-U.S., instead of autocratic and pro-U.S. and contain the Soviets who had invaded Afghanistan in 79' and prevent them from pivoting to the Persian Gulf. This meant more outside political and security pressure from the Carter admin (even in Iran's domestic affairs), as opposed to less-pressure from the previous Nixon's admin in letting the Shah have more freedom to balance out the Soviets and its neighbors.

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