Iran releases video of IRGC missile downing expensive US drone

Source

By News Desk -2020-06-23

BEIRUT, LEBANON (8:00 P.M.) – Over the weekend, Iran released a video showing the moment an Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) missile brought down a U.S. spy drone over the Strait of Hormuz.

According to official state media, the IRGC’s Khordad-3 air defense system successfully brought down the U.S. RQ-4A Global Hawk drone while it was flying over Iranian airspace.

The incident nearly resulted in a U.S. retaliatory attack, as American President Donald Trump contemplated green lighting military strikes against Tehran.

In the video released over the weekend, Iran shows how the Khordad-3 managed to bring down the U.S. drone last year.

The video clip gives new details about the downing of the U.S. drone, which is valued at $220 million.

Time: Imam Khamenei Emerged As the Most Powerful Person in the ME

Time: Imam Khamenei Emerged As the Most Powerful Person in the ME

By Staff, Time

Amid the escalating tension in the Middle East, the American Time magazine chose to shed light on the power of the Leader of the Islamic Revolution His Eminence Imam Sayyed Ali Khamenei.

Admitting in the title that US President Donald Trump might not win his war on Iran, Karim Sadjadpour stated that Leader of the Islamic Revolution his Eminence Imam Sayyed Ali “Khamenei has quietly emerged as the most powerful person in the Middle East, with uniformed military fighting in Syria and loyal proxies dominant in Lebanon, Yemen and [despite a US investment of $1 trillion and thousands of lives].”

In this context, the writer claimed that: “He [Imam Khamenei] has also presided over an audacious and escalating campaign to raise uncertainty and global oil prices, shooting down a $176 million US drone, blowing holes in tankers and bombing the heart of Saudi Arabia’s oil production, all without drawing a US military response.”

Reflecting Imam Khamenei’s wisdom in dealing with tensions, the Time mentioned: “For years, he has carefully calibrated Iran’s reaction to US pressure: an insufficient response might project weakness and invite more pressure. An excessive response, on the other hand, could trigger a serious US retaliation and risk outright war.”

“[Imam] Khamenei has shown a lifelong commitment to his: resistance against “global arrogance” – his moniker for American imperialism – is both ideology and strategic doctrine for the theocracy,” it added.

In this context, the magazine recalled that in June, Imam Khamenei told the Prime Minister of Japan, who had come bearing a message from the White House, “I do not consider Trump as a person worth exchanging any message with.”

Moreover, Sadjadpour also highlighted “in more than two decades researching Iran, both in Tehran and the US, I have learned the most important indicator of the regime’s behavior is in the speeches of the Supreme Leader.”

“Iran is the only nation in the world simultaneously fighting three cold wars – with “Israel”, Saudi Arabia and the US,” he added, pointing out that “Khamenei manages those conflicts with two crucial tools: Qasem Soleimani, the charismatic commander of IRGC operations abroad, is Khamenei’s sword. FM Javad Zarif is his shield, deflecting Western economic and political pressure. Soleimani deals with foreign armies, Zarif with Foreign Ministers.”

On the personal level, the daily underscored that “[Imam] Khamenei is a reader. He has frequently said Victor Hugo’s Les Miserables is the greatest novel ever written, and his Instagram feed shows him smiling as he reads a Persian translation of Fire and Fury, Michael Wolff’s unflattering account of Trump’s first year in office.”

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معادلة السيد أوقفوا حروبكم… أو «تخبزوا بالفراح»

سبتمبر 21, 2019

ناصر قنديل

– بعد توضيحات لا بد منها في ملفات شهدت بعض الاجتهادات والتساؤلات، انطلق السيد حسن نصرالله إلى رسم معادلاته الجديدة، كناطق بلسان محور المقاومة، الذي قال في وصفه أنه محور قوي وشجاع، منذ أن حسم معادلة انتهاء مرحلة التصرف كفرقاء مقاومين كل في ساحته إلى قرار التعامل كمحور موحّد في مواجهة كل حرب على أطراف المحور. والمحور الشجاع هو المحور الذي اتخذ قرار المواجهة متحسباً لمخاطر نشوب حرب، من إسقاط الطائرة الأميركية التجسسية العملاقة في الخليج، إلى عملية أفيفيم النوعية في فلسطين المحتلة، إلى عملية أرامكو التي هزت السعودية والاقتصاد العالمي. وهو المحور القوي لأنه نجح في تحقيق الأهداف وفي ردع العدو وإفهامه أن لا جدوى من مجرد التفكير بالردّ، فرسم معادلاته وقواعد اشتباكه ورسخ قانون حربه.

– في التوضيحات تناول السيد قضيتين راهنتين، الأولى مفردة المبعَدين بالتوازي مع قضية العملاء، ففكّكها مؤكداً أنها مفردة لا تعبر عن واقع، فما هو أمامنا الفارون أو الهاربون للاحتماء بكيان الاحتلال، هم عائلات العملاء، ولا خلط بين ملف العملاء وعائلاتهم، لكن كل شيء وفقاً للقانون، وكل مَن يعود يجب أن يخضع للتحقيق، ومن يثبت تورّطه بالعمالة على أي مستوى يجب أن يلقى عقاباً يتناسب مع أفعاله، ولا يجوز أن تكون الأحكام هزيلة ولا أن تسقط بمرور الزمن. وربّ ضارة نافعة أن حدث ما حدث حتى تنبّه الجميع لخطورة هذا الخلط والتهاون والتراخي. أما التوضيح الثاني فطال انتخابات كيان الاحتلال، حيث جرى تصوير كلام المقاومة عن صلة مساعي رئيس حكومة الاحتلال بنيامين نتنياهو للتصعيد بمطامعه السلطوية والانتخابية، كأنه انحياز من المقاومة لمنافسيه واعتبار إسقاطه أولوية، ودعوة غير مباشرة للناخبين العرب للمشاركة في الانتخابات تحقيقاً لهدف عنوانه، إسقاط نتنياهو. فقال السيد، الانتخابات لا تعنينا، فكلهم قتلة وكلهم صهاينة وكلهم عنصريون، وكلهم في معسكر العدو.

– انطلق السيد لرسم معادلاته، وهو يرسمها باسم قيادة محور المقاومة، من طهران إلى بغداد إلى دمشق وبيروت وغزة وصنعاء، والمعادلات الجديدة تطال كل منهج التهديد بالعقوبات والتلويح بالحرب، وعنوانها أن العقوبات لن تغيّر شيئاً في موازين القوى مهما اشتدت وزادت قسوة، وأن الرد عليها سيكون مزيداً من التصعيد في الميدان، أسوة بعمليات إسقاط الطائرة الأميركية، وعملية أفيفيم، وعملية أرامكو، لكن الواضح أن الأولوية في قراءة المحور، ليست باعتبار الساحة الأشد زجاجية التي تشكل الخاصرة الرخوة لمحور واشنطن هي ساحة الخليج، بل أكثر لأن محور المقاومة ليس معنياً بتسويات تحفظ ماء الوجه لكل من واشنطن وتل أبيب، بينما هو مستعدّ لمنح هذه الفرصة لحكومات الخليج التي تتلقى التحذير من العواقب الكارثية لاستخدامها أكياس رمل في الحرب الأميركية الصهيونية بوجه محور المقاومة وشعب اليمن، لكنها تتلقى سلّماً للنزول عن الشجرة عنوانه، وقف الحرب على اليمن، لتتفادى البقاء كيس ملاكمة يتلقى الضربات بالنيابة عن واشنطن وتل أبيب. لكن المعادلة شاملة كل الجبهات، ولكل المتورطين في الحروب الأميركية الصهيونية في واشنطن وتل أبيب كما في الخليج، أوقفوا حروبكم قبل أن تخبزوا بالفراح .

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IRGC displays British, American drones seized over Iran’s territory

The Islamic Revolution Guards Corps displays a number of intruding American and British drones captured for violating Iran's airspace, in an exhibition in Tehran on September 21, 2019. (Photo by Tasnim news agency)

The Islamic Revolution Guards Corps displays a number of intruding American and British drones captured for violating Iran’s airspace, in an exhibition in Tehran on September 21, 2019. (Photo by Tasnim news agency)

Press tv

Sat Sep 21, 2019 02:35PM [Updated: Sat Sep 21, 2019 02:49PM

The Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) has displayed a number of American and British drones captured for violating Iran’s airspace.

In an exhibition in Tehran on Saturday, the IRGC showcased a British unmanned aerial vehicle, named Phoenix, seized by its Aerospace Division.

Phoenix is an all-weather, day or night, real-time combat surveillance drone. The twin-boom UAV provides surveillance through its surveillance pod, from which the imagery is data linked to a ground control station (GCS) that also controls the aircraft in flight. It has also a maximum flight time of around five hours.

The drone, powered by a 20 kW (26 hp) piston engine, had a maximum speed of 166 km/h and a wingspan of 5.6 meters.

The IRGC also displayed the Aerosonde HQ vertical take-off and landing drone belonging to the US Army used for multi-intelligence payloads such as electronic warfare and communications relay in a single flight.

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Aerosonde has been designed for expeditionary land- and sea-based operations and equipped for simultaneous day/night full-motion video. It is field-proven with more than 300,000 flight hours, including desert heat and Arctic cold.

It is equipped with an easy-to-use launch and recovery trailer for constrained land and shipboard operations.

Desert Hawk was another American drone showcased in the exhibition. It has a length of 0.86 meters with a weight of 3.2 kg. It has an endurance of about an hour with an electric motor driving a quiet pusher propeller.

In June, Iran shot down an intruding American spy drone in the country’s southern coastal province of Hormozgan.

The IRGC said in a statement that the US-made Global Hawk surveillance drone was brought down by its Air Force near the Kouh-e Mobarak region — which sits in the central district of Jask County — after the aircraft violated Iranian airspace.

Back in 2015, Iran also downed a US RQ-170 Sentinel stealth aircraft with minimal damage. The drone was flying over the Iranian city of Kashmar, near the Afghan border, when it was brought down.

Known to be able to hack into enemy drones, Iran currently possesses the biggest collection of captured or downed American and Israeli drones, including the US’ MQ1, MQ9, Shadow, ScanEagle, and RQ-170 as well as the Israeli regime’s Hermes.

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عملية أرامكو… ومقايضة ساحات الاشتباك

عملية أرامكو… ومقايضة ساحات الاشتباك

سبتمبر 17, 2019

ناصر قنديل

يكفي ما قدّمه الأميركيون والسعوديون من وصف لعملية أرامكو لمعرفة التطوّر النوعي الذي مثّلته في الاشتباك الكبير القائم بين واشنطن ومن خلفها كل جماعاتها من جهة، ومحور المقاومة من جهة مقابلة. فهي تعريض الأمن والسلم الدوليين للخطر، وتهديد للاقتصاد العالمي، ومصدر لخطر خراب خدمات أساسية في السعودية كتأمين الكهرباء والماء والغاز والمشتقات النفطية، وهي سبب لتدهور أسواق الأسهم وارتفاع أسعار النفط، ولعجز السعودية عن ضخ ما يلزم لاستقرار هذه السوق ما استدعى أوامر الرئيس الأميركي دونالد ترامب باستخدام الاحتياطي الاستراتيجي لمنع حدوث أزمة نفطيّة.

يمكن تفهم صعوبة تقبل الأميركيين والسعوديين لكون أنصار الله قد نجحوا بتنفيذ ضربتهم النوعية، وامتلكوا جرأة الإقدام عليها. فالضربة قاسية ومؤلمة ونوعية، وقبول أن أنصار الله وراءها يضع أميركا في موقع الفشل الكبير في حماية سوق الطاقة العالمي من الاضطراب، وقبول أن مَن أفشلهم هو بعض شعب محاصر منذ سنين يعني إتهامه بتهريب الأسلحة فشلاً في الحصار، والقبول بقدرته على التصنيع، تمجيداً لمكانته ومعنوياته ومقدراته. وقبول قدرته على خرق منظومات الرادار والصواريخ والمخابرات، إعلان هزيمة مدوّية لمنظومة تكلّف مئات مليارات الدولارات، يصعقها اليمنيون بمنظومة لا تكلّف إلا آلاف الدولارات، مضافاً إليها عامل تثقيل بستة أصفار هو الإرادة. والقبول بالتالي بأن إثارة قضية الأمن السعودي مشروطة بأمن اليمن وما يعنيه من وقف للعدوان والحصار.

الهروب الأميركي نحو اتهام إيران، لن يحسّن حال المعنويات الأميركية والسعودية إلا مؤقتاً باعتبار مَن استهدف أمنهم وقام بهزه وإفشاله، دولة كبرى في المنطقة وليست حركة فتيّة محاصرة، ويجنبهم ربط وقف الاستهدافات للأمن السعودي والنفطي بوقف العدوان والحصار على اليمن، لكنه سيطرح تحديات من نوع آخر، فهو يقول إن إيران أطلقت صواريخ كروز، وهذا يعني أن الحجة القديمة عن صعوبة ملاحقة الطائرات المسيّرة بالمنظومات الدفاعية الصاروخية يفقد معناه، طالما أن هذه المنظومة مصمّمة لمواجهة صواريخ الكروز، فماذا يعني فشلها؟ وهو يقول إن إيران تستفز واشنطن لاستدراجها إلى حرب، فماذا ستفعل واشنطن؟

الحقيقة أن محور المقاومة ككل، يدرك أن واشنطن وحلفاءها اختاروا ميداناً للمواجهة يملكون التفوق فيه وهو الحرب المالية، هرباً من ميدان قالت مواجهات السنوات الماضية إن محور المقاومة يتفوّق فيه وهو ميدان المواجهة العسكرية، لذلك يجب أن يعلم الأميركيون ومَن معهم أن محور المقاومة بكل مفرداته ومكوّناته، يذهب بوعي لإشعال ميدان المواجهة العسكرية، وصولاً للحظة مقايضة ساحات الاشتباك، وقف الحرب المالية مقابل وقف الحرب العسكرية، أو دخول الحربين معاً، فيربح المحور واحدة ويخسر واحدة، لكن خسارة واشنطن للحرب العسكرية ستسقط معها أشياء كثيرة سيكون مستحيلاً بعدها الحديث عن مكان لواشنطن وجماعاتها، ولتفادي ذلك عليها أن تصل لتسوية في الإثنتين، فتتفادى واشنطن وجماعاتها كأساً مرّة في الميدان العسكري، ويتخلص المحور من كأس مرّة في الميدان المالي، والآتي أعظم حتى تختار واشنطن، من إسقاط طائرة التجسس الأميركية العملاقة إلى أفيفيم إلى أرامكو.. وما بعد ما بعد أفيفيم وأرامكو!

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المسيّرات الإسرائيلية one way ticket

المسيّرات الإسرائيلية one way ticket

سبتمبر 9, 2019

روزانا رمّال

مرتكزات عدة في نقاش مبدأ إسقاط المسيَّرات الإسرائيلية في لبنان تأخذ مكانها بعيداً عن كلام الأمين العام لحزب الله ووعوده بالبدء بمرحلة جديدة والشروع بإسقاط كل ما هو مسيَّر كلما كانت الفرصة سانحة لحزب الله. فالإسرائيليون لم يكن لديهم أدنى شك من منطلق التجربة مع «عدو» كحزب الله بأن كلام نصرالله شكلي او مجرد تهديد أو رفع لمعنويات شعبه، بل على العكس منذ اللحظة الاولى ادركت القيادات العسكرية الإسرائيلية أن الأمر آيل للتنفيذ. ولهذا السبب شهدت الأجواء اللبنانية تكثيفاً لطلعات مسيّرات في الـ 48 ساعة التي أعقبت تهديد نصرالله كنوع من التحدي اضطر نصرالله أن يوضح بعدها ان حزب الله لم يعد بمهاجمة كل المسيّرات إنما هذا مقرون بظروف المهمة فبقي الأكيد أن القرار «بالملاحقة» اتخذ.

لكن الأهم بالنسبة للقيادات الأمنية الإسرائيلية هو نقل المعركة نحو الأجواء وهو نقطة التفوق «الوحيدة» التي تزخّم الحضور الإسرائيلي وترفع من مهابة آلته العسكرية. فـ»إسرائيل» وبكل وضوح هي «سيدة الأجواء» في المنطقة. فلا سلاح يضاهيها ولا مهمات توازي طلعاتها الجوية. واذا كان الاشتباك قد انتقل الى الجو فإن المأزق الإسرائيلي صار «كارثياً» كمن يتجرّد من نقطة قوته تدريجياً. فالمنطق العسكري يفرض على الخبراء في تل أبيب عدم التوقف عند فكرة إسقاط طائرة مسيّرة من هنا او هناك، بل يفرض البحث في ما يملكه حزب الله لمواجهة قطع الجو الإسرائيلية الحربية. فمن يمتلك القدرة على إسقاط طائرات استطلاع هو بدون شك متجه نحو إسقاط طائرات مقاتلة في المرحلة المقبلة. كما أن حزب الله وعملاً بتحالفاته الإقليمية والدولية وبمنطق الأمور الذي اخذت نحو تشارك في الميدان السوري والعراقي واليمني فإن مسألة امتلاكه سلاحاً كاسراً لطائرات الجو هو بديهي اليوم. لكن المعادلة السابقة لم تكن فيها اولوية حزب الله الكشف عن قدراته الجوية، ولهذا السبب لطالما أرادت «إسرائيل» إيقاع الحزب بفِخاخ للكشف عما يملك لتبني على الشيء مقتضاه، لكنه لم يقع فيها ولم يكن أيضاً أمين عام حزب الله في أي وقت من الاوقات مفرطاً بمعلومات مجانية لـ»إسرائيل»، خصوصاً من هذا النوع في معرض حديثه.

وبطبيعة الحال لا بد من النظر الى حليف حزب الله الأساسي اي إيران وقدراتها الدفاعية الجوية وقدراتها العسكرية التي استطاع الحرس الثوري عبرها إسقاط واحدة من أقوى الطائرات المسيرة في العالم منذ أشهر قليلة في محافظة هرمزكان في جنوب إيران. والطائرة من طراز غلوبال هوك تصنعها الشركة الأميركية نورثروب غرونمان وقد أُسقطت في منطقة «كوه مبارك» بعد أن اخترقت أجواء الجمهورية الإسلامية الإيرانية وقد أعلنت القيادة المركزية للقوات الأميركية حينها أن طائرة استطلاع تابعة للبحرية الأميركية أُسقطت بصاروخ إيراني أرض – جو فوق مضيق هرمز. هذه الطائرة التي تبلغ قيمتها أكثر من مئتي مليون دولار وعددها المحدود جداً لدى الأميركيين قلبت الموازين في مسألة شن حرب أميركية على إيران لأن الكشف عن هذه المقدرات الإيرانية «المتطورة» جعل من واشنطن تتريث في اتخاذ أي قرار من هذا النوع.

بالعودة للتفوّق الجوي فإن الأمر نفسه والقلق نفسه سيراود «إسرائيل» في الأيام المقبلة، لأنه لا يوجد أي ضمانة بان إيران لم تسلم حزب الله صواريخ قادرة على إسقاط طائرات إسرائيلية مقاتلة في اي حرب مقبلة. فكيف بالحال وأن «إسرائيل» تعرف ان للحزب مقدرات استطلاعية متطوّرة وهو الذي أرسل طائرة استطلاع فوق الأراضي المحتلة منذ ثلاث سنوات تقريباً عُرفت باسم «أيوب» وقد دخلت الأراضي المحتلة وعادت إلى الأجواء اللبنانية سالمة بدون أن تلحظها المضادات الإسرائيلية حتى وعليه فإن حرب الأجواء انتقلت للمرة الأولى لتصبح هي العنصر المريب بالنسبة لـ»إسرائيل»، وكيفية التعاطي معها يجعلها مكبلة أكثر من أي وقت مضى.

إسقاط مسيّرة فوق منطقة رامية الجنوبية اللبنانية هو رسالة مباشرة بأن على الإسرائيليين توقع من اليوم أن حزب الله باشر بأعماله بمراقبة ما يتحرّك بالأجواء اللبنانية، وإذا كان على «إسرائيل» تدارك الأمر، فإنها ستضع أمامها سلفاً فكرة الخسائر المحققة من أي طائرة مسيّرة أو طائرة استطلاع متطوّرة تحلّق فوق لبنان، لأن نسبة عودتها آمنة ستكون خمسين بالمئة بعد اليوم، لهذا فإن تل أبيب ستضع بحسبانها حكماً وبشكل منطقي الخيار «الأسوأ»، وهو إن اي دخول لمسيرات إسرائيلية للأجواء اللبنانية قد قطع لها حزب الله ما يشبه one way ticket فهي لن تعود الى مراكزها سالمة. وبالتالي الخسائر الإسرائيلية «المحققة» صارت بحكم المتوقعة بالنسبة للأجهزة الأمنية الإسرائيلية ليبقى «المربك جداً بالنسبة لتل ابيب» هو العمل الاستخباري الذي صار مقيّداً بشكل كبير من الجو فوق لبنان، لا بل ربما يعرض «إسرائيل» للانكشاف، لان احتمال أن يسقط حزب الله مسيرات بدون ان تتمكن «إسرائيل» من تفجيرها هو أيضاً احد الاحتمالات الورادة وبحال وصلت الى ايدي الحزب حيث سيتمّ تحليلها وكشف مواطن اهتمام الإسرائيليين بالعموم.

إقدام حزب الله على اسقاط مسيرة هو بداية اعلان أكيدة عن مرحلة جديدة من التوازن الذي كان يحكم عدوين يعرفان بعضهما جيداً، ولعل الرسائل بينهما اليوم التي تبدأ عند الحدود اللبنانية ولا تنتهي عند الحدود السورية فالعراقية وربما اليمنية، خصوصاً ضمن تبادل السلاح والأهداف بين المحور الواحد أكبر من أن يحللها مراقبون عن بُعد، لكن وبالمحصلة أدخل حزب الله الأجواء اللبنانية ضمن معادلته الجديدة وأدخل معها جرعة جديدة من الردع لحماية البلاد.

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فعلاً لم يحدث هذا منذ ألف عام

 

يوليو 25, 2019

ناصر قنديل

– في كلام سابق للأمين العام لحزب الله السيد حسن نصرالله إشارة اعتبرها مرشد الجمهورية الإسلامية في إيران الإمام علي الخامنئي بصيص أمل عن اقتراب موعد تحرير القدس من الاحتلال، وفقاً لما وصفه نصرالله بالاستدلال بالمنطق واقع المعادلات والتوازنات، رابطاً أمله الشخصي بالصلاة في القدس بمعادلة الحياة والموت التي لا يمكن التحكم بها، رغم وقوع توقعاته لتحرير القدس ضمن المدى المنطقي لما يمكنه من أن يكون شاهداً على التحرير، وفي كلام لاحق لمستشار الإمام الخامنئي الدكتور علي ولايتي، المعروف بمكانته في الملفات الاستراتيجية في فريق الإمام الخامنئي، إشارة إلى أن إسقاط الطائرة الأميركية الإلكترونية العملاقة واحتجاز ناقلة النفط البريطانية، أحداث تمثل منعطفاً في تاريخ العالم الإسلامي.

– بالعودة إلى التاريخ تبدو منطقة الساحل الشرقي للبحر المتوسط وعمقها الآسيوي، كميدان جغرافي للمواجهات التاريخية بين الغرب والشرق، مسرحاً لتسجيل انتصارات الغرب وهيمنته واستعراضاته العسكرية، وفرض مصالحه الاقتصادية منذ خمسة قرون على الأقل عندما بدأت الإمبراطورية العثمانية تقدّم التنازلات للدول الأوروبية في جنوب السلطنة، لضمان مصالحها في بلدان الشمال، وصولاً لتفكك السلطنة مع الحرب العالمية الأولى وما تبعها من ترسيخ للهيمنة الغربية، لكن حتى مراحل صعود السلطنة العثمانية لم تشهد ردعاً للصولات والجولات الغربية نحو شرق المتوسط، فخلالها نشأ ما عُرف بعهد القناصل، وتنامي الإرساليات، ونشوء النسخ البدائية للوكالات التجارية.

– آخر ما يكتبه التاريخ عن يد الشرق العليا في شرق المتوسط كان في تمكّن شعوب المنطقة من مواجهة حملات الفرنجة التي سُمّيت بالحروب الصليبية واتخذت الدين شعاراً لها لحشد المشاركة في التعبئة لقواتها تحت شعار الذهاب إلى القدس، بينما سحقت في طريقها إلى فلسطين كل الكنائس الشرقية وقتلت الآلاف من قساوستها ورهبانها، ودمّرت ممتلكاتها، وقتلت عشرات الآلاف من رعاياها، واللافت أن حروب الفرنجة نجحت يومها خلال الفترة الممتدة من نهاية القرن الحادي عشر إلى نهاية القرن الثاني عشر ببناء مستوطنات في فلسطين ونجحت بوضع يدها على القدس، بصورة لا تختلف كثيراً عن واقع كيان الاحتلال اليوم، وبقيت الأساطيل الغربية ومحاولات تأمين طريق بري بحملات مستديمة، هي مصدر الحماية الذي يشكل مصدر قوة هذا الكيان الاستيطاني الناشئ يومها.

– مع تحرير القدس في نهاية القرن الثاني عشر، وجعلها متاحة لكل المؤمنين لممارسة عباداتهم وشعائرهم الدينية، انتهت عملياً الحروب الكبرى وبقيت مناوشات استمرت تحت مسمّى حملات صليبية، لكنها لم تقدر أن تغير الواقع الجديد، حتى نشوء كيان الاحتلال منتصف القرن العشرين، لكن اللافت بالقياس التاريخي أنه منذ نشأة هذا الكيان القائم على اغتصاب فلسطين، للمرة الأولى يبدو محاصراً بصواريخ قوى المقاومة ومقاتليها من كل الجهات عاجزاً عن خوض حرب، وتبدو الأساطيل البحرية والجوية والبرية لنجدته عاجزة عن تشكيل توازن ردع في المنطقة. وهذا هو مغزى ما تمثله حوادث إسقاط الطائرة الأميركية واحتجاز الناقلة البريطانية.

– منذ ألف عام لم يحدث مثيل لذلك، رغم ما تلقته الأساطيل الغازية لنابليون بونابرت على سواحل مصر أو أسوار عكا، ورغم حروب المواجهة التي خاضها جمال عبد الناصر في مواجهة العدوان الثلاثي، فقد بقي في كل حالة منها مجال للإعداد لجولة مقبلة، حيث كان احتياط الغرب القوي ينتقل من ضفة إلى ضفة، كما هو حال الأفول الفرنسي لحساب بريطانيا والأفول البريطاني لحساب أميركا. وهذا مغزى القول اليوم إنه منعطف تاريخي، وبصيص أمل.

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WHY RUSSIA WON’T SELL S-400 TO IRAN; THE YANKEE BLINK IN THE GULF; SYRIAN ARMY CONTINUES ONSLAUGHT IN IDLIB AND HAMA I

Image result for S-400 Russian anti-aircraft system

(Image courtesy of Moscow Times)

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Besides the Russian-manufactured S-500, the S-400 is the most desirable system for knocking down enemy aircraft.  The Turks have insisted on purchasing the S-400 despite full-throated condemnation from NATO countries who argue that the system is incompatible with target-acquisition platforms used by NATO. The Turks have dug in their heels and shouted “Fudge!”.  The deal is going through with or without Brussels’ acquiescence.  European dawdling over Turkey’s efforts to join the EU has soured Ankara’s taste for the Continent.

But, efforts to negotiate a deal on the S-400s between Iran and Moscow have floundered.  Moscow was only willing to sell Tehran the S-300, a less efficient and less effective system.  The reason is quite simple:  The Russians don’t trust the Iranians to simply buy the system and the Iranians have a proven record of reverse-engineering everything they get a hold of.  One example is the American drone that was almost brought down on Iranian territory by a near-science fiction-like tractor beam that resulted in Iranian scientists recreating the drone for their own and their allies’ uses.  Syria today uses that same drone design to harass and harry the terrorists in Idlib and Hama.  Although the Chinese have been manufacturing effective drones for years, it is just better to get a drone free from Tehran, a drone whose technology is most familiar to Iranian fighters alongside the Syrian Army.

This is a problem the Americans face with China and its never-ending efforts to steal Yankee technology.  The Russians are simply less transparent than the Americans.  If they’re not sure you won’t re-manufacture the product, they won’t sell it to you.

To prove my point, folks, the S-300 has already been cloned in Iran and the number of batteries on the Bastion-like platform exceeds 75, many of which have already been delivered to Syria.  This has caused some friction with Mr. Putin who, as you all know, doesn’t tolerate what he views as treachery.  In any case, the new and improved S-300 deployed by the IRGC knocked down a drone, the RQ 4 Global Hawk, a couple of days ago – a drone that was touted as “untouchable”.  That is why Trump balked.

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THE PERSIAN GULF AT THE STRAITS OF HORMUZ:

Image result for Straits of Hormuz dimensions

(Image courtesy of Thoughtco)

At its narrowest point, the Straits of Hormuz, is 21 miles or 39 kms. wide.  Both Iran and Oman, who are the nations at the narrowest point, extended their sea-air territorial claims 12 miles each for a total of 24 miles.  So much for the American position that the drone which was knocked down was in international airspace.  When the drone was detected crossing into Iranian airspace, the ground commander ordered the S-300 to blast it out of the skies.  The Iranians now have a treasure chest of parts from the plane which they have recovered.  The U.S. does not recognize either Iran’s or Oman’s claims to the 12 mile air and sea territorial extensions.  The U.S. only recognizes its own 12 mile territorial barriers.

_____________________________________________

HAMA:   

اسقاط طائرة مسيرة مذخرة بقنابل شديدة الانفجار بريف حماة الشمالي

(Image courtesy of SANA)

Two days ago, a drone was detected flying in from Idlib Province and on a straight path to Hama’s Military Airbase.  (See map, above)  The drone was shot down by an MT system and recovered.  It turned out to be locally-built drone of the type used by HTS or Alqaeda.  The drone was very sophisticated, armed with 10 missiles loaded with C-4 and had a very advaced GPS capability.  It also had cameras aboard enabling it to send back images.  The belief is that is was designed by a NATO country which wanted credible deniability as far as supporting terrorists such as these.

Today, terrorists coming out of Kafr Zaytaa, Al-Habeet and Al-Lataamina fired on North Hama at the villages of Al-Shaykh Hadeed and Al-Jarnaba a barrage of rockets which destroyed material assets of the villagers only.  The SAA responded by firing back using artillery and destroyed several rocket launchers.

At Al-Mastooma and the area of Jabal Al-Arba’een SAA spotters pursued a series of convoys moving south towards Areeha.  The SAA opened a torrent of artillery and rocket fire destroying all the convoys leaving the remnant rodents scurrying toward the village of Musaybeen.  The group was Nusra (HTS or Alqaeda).

 

US “Downs” Legitimacy After Claims of Downing Iranian Drone

July 20, 2019 (Tony Cartalucci – NEO) – The US boasted of downing an Iranian drone over the Strait of Hormuz, admittedly in international waters, just miles off Iran’s coast, and thousands of miles from Washington.

It claims the drone was “threatening” a US amphibious assault ship, the USS Boxer.

The Washington Post in its article, “Trump says the U.S. Navy downed an Iranian drone in the Strait of Hormuz,” would claim:

A U.S. naval ship downed an Iranian drone that flew too close and ignored multiple calls to turn away, President Trump said Thursday, as tensions between the United States and Iran appeared to be rising once again in the Persian Gulf region. 

Speaking at the White House, Trump said the drone came within 1,000 yards of the USS Boxer in the Strait of Hormuz before the crew “took defensive action” and “immediately destroyed” it.

An AP article titled, “US warship downs Iranian drone in Hormuz Strait,” noted that (emphasis added):

The Pentagon said the incident happened at 10 am local time on Thursday in international waters while the Boxer was transiting the waterway to enter the Persian Gulf. The Boxer is one of several US naval ships in the area, including the USS Abraham Lincoln, an aircraft carrier that has been operating in the nearby North Arabian Sea for weeks.

The claims come nearly a month after Iran shot down a US drone – an RQ-4A Global Hawk – operating near Iranian shores, also in the Strait of Hormuz.

At the time, the US condemned Iran’s move claiming it had downed the drone over international waters. Now – the US openly claims it has shot down an Iranian drone over international waters. The overt hypocrisy is intentional. The US has been attempting to goad Tehran into an armed conflict for years with US policy papers openly admitting as much.

A 2009 Brookings Institution paper titled, “Which Path to Persia? Options for a New American Strategy toward Iran,” would openly admit (emphasis added):

…it would be far more preferable if the United States could cite an Iranian provocation as justification for the airstrikes before launching them. Clearly, the more outrageous, the more deadly, and the more unprovoked the Iranian action, the better off the United States would be. Of course, it would be very difficult for the United States to goad Iran into such a provocation without the rest of the world recognizing this game, which would then undermine it. 

Apparently, the US is no longer concerned about whether or not the world recognizes this game and is doing everything in its power to goad Iran into miscalculating and granting the US justification for a long-desired and much larger conflict with Tehran.

Did the Iranian Drone Really Threaten the USS Boxer? Was it Even an Iranian Drone? 

As with most deliberate provocations – the recent US claims of downing an Iranian drone came with minimum details and no evidence at all. Not even the type of drone was mentioned by the Washington Post or AP.

Claims that the drone came within 1,000 yards of the ship and was disabled through electronic jamming indicates it was most likely an off-the-shelf drone used for photography and in no way posed a threat to the USS Boxer.

Iranian media – for its part – claims the US most likely shot down their own drone, and denies Iran was operating any of its own drones in the area at the time. Iran’s PressTV in an article titled, “US may have shot down own drone in Persian Gulf, Iran says of Trump’s claim,” would claim:

Iran has rejected US President Donald Trump’s claim that a US warship had shot down an Iranian Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) in the Strait of Hormuz. 

“We have not lost any drone in the Strait of Hormuz nor anywhere else,” Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Seyyed Abbas Araqchi said in a tweet on Friday. 

“I am worried that USS Boxer has shot down their own UAS by mistake!”

What is certain is that even if it were an Iranian drone, it couldn’t have posed more of a threat to the USS Boxer than America’s military presence in the Middle East poses to its inhabitants – a region where the US has repeatedly bombed, invaded, currently occupies or is waging war by proxy against multiple nations including Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Yemen, and indeed – Iran itself.

Beyond the Middle East the US has left Libya desolate and is currently occupying the Central Asian nation of Afghanistan – a military campaign that has lasted now nearly 2 decades and is unfolding along Iran’s eastern border while the US continues to maintain a military presence in Iraq on Iran’s western border.

The US currently maintains crippling sanctions against Iran, admittedly sponsors terrorist groups operating within Iran, and has repeatedly threatened to overthrow the Iranian government through open military intervention, US-sponsored “color revolutions,” as well as economic and covert military means.

The UK – equally committed to Washington’s desire to overthrow the Iranian government – has even recently hijacked an Iranian tanker in the Strait of Gibraltar.

Under ordinary circumstances, a military drone approaching a ship of any kind from any nation in international waters – allegedly as close as 1,000 yards – would be considered a provocation. But Iranian drones – if this was indeed the case – approaching a US warship plying the waters of a region utterly ravaged by US military aggression can at best be considered scrutiny the US has earned itself through its own destructive foreign policy – a foreign policy that fully intends to visit the same destruction brought upon nations like Yemen, Iraq, Syria, Libya, and Afghanistan – upon Iran as well.

Iran surely has the right to defend itself – to track US warships as they pass just miles from its own shores – whether in “international waters” or not. And if Iran is not allowed to fire on US drones over these same “international waters,” what gave the US the right to do so?

There is a much easier solution for the US if its goal really is to ensure the safety of its vessels travelling the globe – stop provoking conflict, thus eliminating the chances of its vessels becoming targets during such conflict.

Of course, the US will not do this. It will continue pursuing hegemonic foreign policy until it is economically and militarily no longer able to do so. For Iran – the trick will be avoiding provocations designed to trigger a war the US still believes it can win until global dynamics change enough to ensure whatever war the US triggers it will have no chance of winning.

Tony Cartalucci, Bangkok-based geopolitical researcher and writer, especially for the online magazine New Eastern Outlook”.

إيران في المواجهة… تفرض قواعد اشتباك ومعادلات ردع فاعلة

يوليو 23, 2019

العميد د. أمين محمد حطيط

ظنّ الغرب بعد انهيار الاتحاد السوفياتي انّ الساحة الدولية خلت له وأنه أيّ الغرب بشكل عام وأميركا بشكل خاص لهم الحق بأن يقيّدوا العالم بأوامرهم وقوانينهم وبما يفرضونه من قواعد سلوك أو قواعد اشتباك. وتصرّف الغرب بقيادة أميركية بذهنية «الأمر لنا وعلى العالم الطاعة». وبهذا «المنطق الذي يرفضه منطق العدالة والسيادة والاستقلال الوطني»، بهذا المنطق خاضت أميركا وأحلافها القائمة او التي ركبت غبّ الطلب خاضت منذ العام 1990 أربع حروب الكويت أفغانستان – العراق لبنان وألزمت مجلس الأمن إما بتفويضها ابتداء أو بالتسليم لاحقاً بالأمر الواقع الذي أنتجته حروبها العدوانية.

اما إيران التي أطلقت في ظلّ ثورتها الإسلامية نظرية «الاستقلال الفعلي المحصّن بالقوة القادرة على حمايته« فقد تصدّت للمنطق الاستعماري الأميركي ورفضت الخضوع لمقتضياته، وجاهرت برفضها له وتمسّكها بحقها في السيادة والاستقلال الوطني، ليس هذا فقط، بل وأيضاً جاهرت بنصرة القضايا العادلة ومدّ يد العون للمظلومين ضحايا الغزو الاستعماري بوجوهه المتعدّدة والتي يشكل الاستعمار الاحتلالي التهجيري الذي تمارسه «إسرائيل» في فلسطين، الوجه الأبشع والأكثر ظلماً في ممارسات الاستعمار.

ولأنّ إيران رفضت ان تنصاع للاستعمار بأيّ صيغة من صيغ الإذعان التي أعدّها لها فقد اتخذ القرار الغربي بإسقاطها وشنّت عليها الحرب في الأشهر الأولى لنجاح ثورتها وإقامة دولتها الإسلامية… ولما فشلت الحرب في تحقيق أهدافها اعتمد الغرب الاستعماري سياسة الاحتواء والمحاصرة أسلوباً لمواجهتها.

وبالتالي فإنّ إيران الاستقلالية هذه وضعت بين شرّين: شرّ الاستتباع والهيمنة كما هي حال جوارها في دول الخليج، وشرّ التضييق والحصار للتركيع عبر ما يسمّى العقوبات، وبينهما اختارت إيران الشرّ الأدنى لأنها توقن «انّ جوع مع كرامة وسيادة أفضل من عبودية وتبعية مع وعد بالتساهل الاقتصادي». ومع هذا الاختيار حوّلت التحدي الى فرصة استغلتها من أجل تنمية اقتصادها سعياً لتحقيق الاكتفاء الذاتي الممكن.

استطاعت إيران ان تصمد طيلة الأربعين عاماً الماضية الى ان وصلت اليوم لموقع بالغ الحرج والخطورة حيث فرض عليها اختيار جديد، يخيّرها بين التنازل عن حقوقها استجابة لقرار أميركي ينتهك هذه الحقوق، او المواجهة المفتوحة مع ما يمكن ان تتطوّر فيه وصولاً الى الحرب. اختبار بدأه ترامب بالخروج من الاتفاق النووي وأكده موقف أوروبي متخاذل عن حماية هذا الاتفاق.

تدرك إيران انّ الخضوع للرئيس الأميركي ترامب في مطالبه يعني بكلّ بساطة التنكّر للثورة وتغيير طبيعة النظام الاستقلالي والعودة الى مقاعد الدول التي تفرض أميركا هيمنتها عليها، اما المواجهة فإنها مع مخاطرها تختزن آمالاً كبيرة بتحقيق النجاح وتثبيت المواقع الاستقلالية، ولهذا اختارت إيران ان تتمسك بحقوقها واستقلالها وان تعدّ لكلّ احتمال مقتضياته، وهذا القرار هو الأساس الذي تبني عليه إيران كلّ سياستها.

ويبدو انّ أميركا صُدمت بالقرار الإيراني فراحت تهوّل على إيران بالحرب وعملت على تشكيل أحلاف دولية للعدوان عليها بدءاً بـ «حلف الناتو العربي» واجتماع وارسو الذي دعت اليه للتحشيد ضدّ إيران، وصولاً الى فكرة الحلف البحري في الخليج لمحاصرة إيران، ثم شرعت بتحريك ونقل قوات عسكرية الى السعودية للإيحاء بأنّ الخيار العسكري لمواجهة إيران هو خيار جدي وقريب…

كلّ هذا لم يرعب إيران ولم يهزّ ثقتها بنفسها لا بل تعاملت مع المستجدات بموقف أذهل أميركا وحلفاءها حيث كان إسقاط إيران لطائرة التجسّس الأميركية ثم كان احتجازها لباخرة بريطانية انتهكت مقابل الشاطئ الإيراني قواعد الملاحة الدولية ثم كان اعتقال 17 جاسوس أميركي في إيران ومحاكمتهم…

قامت يران بكلّ ذلك في إطار تنفيذ استراتيجية دفاعية تثبت فيها أنها صحيح لا تسعى الى الحرب ولكنها أيضاً لا تتهيّب المواجهة إذا فرضت عليها، ولهذا أعدّت إيران نفسها للدفاع وأطلقت مع حلفائها «استراتيجية الحرب المفتوحة والمواجهة الشاملة على كلّ الجبهات» وحضرت نفسها للأكثر سوءاً. ما جعل أميركا تدرك انّ لعبتها على حافة الفشل والانهيار الأمر الذي جعلها تتراجع قليلاً وتأمر بريطانيا بفعل شيء ما ضدّ إيران فاستجابت ونفذت عملية قرصنة ضدّ باخرة نفط إيرانية كانت تعبر مضيق جبل طارق. وارتكبت بذلك عملاً غير مشروع ومخالف لأحكام القانون الدولي العام بما فيه أحكام الملاحة الدولية ويصنّف بأنه عدوان على إيران بكلّ المعايير.

تصوّرت أميركا وبريطانيا أنهما ستلويان ذراع إيران وتجبرانها على وقف تصدير نفطها، لكن الردّ الإيراني جاء معاكساً للتوقع الانكلوسكسوني، ردّ حصل على وفقاً لمبدأ «السن بالسن والعين بالعين والبادئ أظلم«، وترجم باحتجاز الباخرة البريطانية التي كاث تعبر مضيق هرمز.

انّ احتجاز إيران للباخرة البريطانية بعد أيام من إسقاط طائرة التجسّس الأميركية فوق النطاق الإقليمي الإيراني يشكل خطوة نوعيه في المواجهة من شأنها ان تفرض إيقاعها على الكثير من العلاقات الدولية التي يكون الغرب طرفاً فيها. وفيها من الدلالات فوق ما كان يتوقع او يتخيّل أحد من ساسة الغرب عامة وأميركا وبريطانيا خاصة دلالات يمكن ذكر بعضها كالتالي:

1 ـ رسم الفعل الإيراني قواعد اشتباك جديدة في العلاقة مع الخصوم والأعداء، قواعد قائمة على «الردّ المناسب في الوقت المناسب وبالطريقة المناسبة»، ينفذ تطبيقاً لقاعدة أساسية في قانون الحرب هي «قاعدة التناسب والضرورة». فإيران وفقاً لهذا المبدأ لا تعتدي ولا تبادر الى عمل ميداني إنْ لم يكن مسبوقاً بعدوان عليها، كما انّ إيران لن تسكت عن أيّ عدوان يستهدفها.

2 ـ أسقطت إيران الهيبة الأميركية والبريطانية وهذا أمر بالغ الخطورة بالنسبة لاثنتين من مجموعة المنتصرين في الحرب العالمية الثانية. وأكدت أنها لا تخشى ما هم عليه من قوّة، وبأن عليهم اعتماد الحسابات الدقيقة في مواجهتها وإلا كانت الخسارة المؤكدة.

3 ـ أكدت إيران انها عصية على الحرب النفسية وأنها واثقة من قدراتها الدفاعية الذاتية وإنها أيضاً مطمئنة لتحالفاتها الإقليمية والدولية. وأنها لا تتهيّب مواجهة عسكرية مع انها لا تسعى اليها.

4 ـ أكدت إيران احترامها للقانون الدولي وفقاً للتفسير الموضوعي الصحيح، وترفض أيّ تفسير منحرف وعدواني على حقوق الغير.

5 ـ أرست إيران معادلة ردع متبادل فاعل في مواجهة الخارج عامة وأميركا ومن يتبعها خاصة، معادلة جديدة تقوم مكان مبدأ الردع الأحادي الذي تفرضه أميركا في العالم وتمنع أحداً من الدول من مواجهتها حتى ولو كانت المواجهة دفاعاً عن النفس.

انّ مفاعيل ما تقوم به إيران يتعدّى إطار العلاقة البينية مع أميركا وبريطانيا ويتمدّد ليصبغ العلاقات الدولية كلها وليفرض نمطاً جديداً فيها قائماً على الثقة بالنفس وكسر قيود الهيبة الغربية التي بها فرض الاستعمار إرادته وبها أخضعت الدول وبها سرقت أموال الشعوب وحقوقهم، وعندما تكسر الهيبة تلك ستخلع أنياب الغرب وسيظهر مدى عجز دوله عسكرياً عن القبض على قرارات الشعوب والدول. وعندها سيفتح الطريق واسعاً أمام من يريد الحرية الحقيقية والاستقلال الفعلي الناجز والتمتع الكامل بثرواته.

وبكلمة أخرى نقول انّ إيران اليوم ترسم مشهداً دولياً استراتيجياً هاماً يتعدّى القول بمعادلة الطائرة بالطائرة والباخرة بالباخرة وهي تواجه معسكر الاستعمار بالأصالة عن نفسها والنيابة عن أحرار العالم ومظلوميه، وهنا تكمن أهمية المواجهة التي ستكشف انّ الخوف من الغرب كان قائماً على وهم وخيال أكثر منه على حقيقة وواقع، فالغرب لا يملك الجيوش التي تمكّنه من السيطرة على الكرة الأرضية لكن ضعف الآخر وعدم أخلاقية الغرب مكّنه من السيطرة، والآن تقوم إيران بكسر هذه الهيبة وتشجع الآخرين على المواجهة بعد الإعداد الصحيح لها وامتلاك الثقة بالنفس… وليعلم الجميع انّ الغرب سيحجم عن الحرب عندما يلمس انّ الآخر مستعدّ لها وقادر على خوضها… كما هي حال إيران ومحور المقاومة اليوم… وبهذا نفهم ما قاله بومبيو لبريطانيا «احموا سفنكم بأنفسكم فلسنا مستعدّين للحرب مع إيران».

أستاذ جامعي ـ باحث استراتيجي

As Trump Backs Down, the Pips Squeak

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FEATURED STORY

As Trump Backs Down, the Pips Squeak

Tom Luongo July 21, 2019

Last week it was all fire and brimstone. The US was threatening more sanctions on Iran, the Brits were seizing oil tankers and Iran was violating the JCPOA.

This week things look different all of a sudden. An oil tanker goes dark while passing through the Strait of Hormuz, the story fails to get any real traction and the US allows Iranian Foreign Minister, recently sanctioned, to do his job at the United Nations.

Trump then holds a cabinet meeting where he reiterates that

“We’re not looking for regime change. We want them out of Yemen.”

I thought National Security Advisor John Bolton said the US would apply pressure until “the pips squeak.”

Where the pips are squeaking is on the Arabian Peninsula, not across the Persian Gulf in Bandar Abbas. Specifically, I’m talking about the United Arab Emirates. The UAE sent a delegation to Tehran recently that coincided with its partial withdrawal of troops from Yemen.

That meeting, according to Elijah Magnier, focused on Emirates realizing they are in the middle of this conflict, up to their skyscrapers.

“The UAE would like to avoid seeing their country transformed into a battlefield between the US and Iran in case of war, particularly if Trump is re-elected. The Emirates officials noted that the US did not respond to Iran’s retaliation in the Gulf and in particularly when the US drone was downed. This indicates that Iran is prepared for confrontation and will implement its explicit menace, to hit any country from which the US carries out their attacks on Iran. We want to be out of all this”, an Emirates official told his Iranian counterpart in Tehran.

Iran promised to talk to the Yemeni officials to avoid hitting targets in Dubai and Abu Dhabi as long as the UAE pulls out its forces from the Yemen and stops this useless war. Saudi Crown Prime Mohammad Bin Salman is finding himself without his main Emirates ally, caught in a war that is unwinnable for the Saudi regime. The Yemeni Houthis have taken the initiative, hitting several Saudi strategic targets. Saudi Arabia has no realistic objectives and seems to have lost the appetite to continue the war in Yemen.

So, with the Houthis successfully striking major targets inside Saudi Arabia and the UAE abruptly pulling forces out, the war in Yemen has reached a critical juncture. Remember, the Republican-controlled Senate approved a bill withdrawing support for the war back in March, which the White House had to veto in support of its fading hopes for its Israeli/Palestinian deal pushed by Jared Kushner.

But things have changed significantly since then as that deal has been indefinitely postponed with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu facing a second election this fall after he failed to secure a stable coalition.

After that there was the failed economic conference in Bahrainin June where Kushner revealed the economic part of the plan to a half-empty room where only the backers of the plan showed any real support.

And that’s the important part of this story, because it was Kushner’s plan which was the impetus for all of this insane anti-Iran belligerence in the first place. Uniting the Gulf states around a security pact leveraging the U.S/Israeli/Saudi alliance was part of what was supposed to pressure the Palestinians to the bargaining table.

By placing maximum economic sanctions on both Hezbollah in Lebanon and Iran while continuing to foment chaos in Syria was supposed to force Israel’s enemies to fold under the pressure which would, in turn, see the Palestinians surrender to the will of Kushner and Bibi.

The problem is, it didn’t work. And now Trump is left holding the bag on this idiotic policy which culminated in an obvious provocation when Iran shot down a $220 million Global Hawk surveillance drone, nearly sparking a wider war.

But what it did was expose the US and not Iran as the cause of the current problems.

Since then Trump finally had to stand up and be the grown-up in the room, such as he is, and put an end to this madness.

The UAE understood the potential for Iran’s asymmetric response to US belligerence. The Saudis cannot win the war in Yemen that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman began. The fallout from this war has been to push Qatar out of the orbit of the rest of the Gulf Cooperation Council, cutting deals with Iran over developing the massive North Pars gas field and pipelines to Europe.

And now the UAE has realized it is facing an existential threat to its future in any confrontation between Iran and the US

What’s telling is that Trump is making Yemen the issue to negotiate down rather than Iran’s nuclear ambitions. Because it was never about the nuclear program. It was always about Iran’s ballistic missile program.

And Secretary of State Mike Pompeo would have us believe that for the first time Iran’s missile program is on the negotiating table. I have no idea if that’s actually true, but it’s a dead giveaway that it’s what the US is after.

The main reason why Trump and Netanyahu are so angry about the JCPOA is the mutual outsourcing of the nuclear ballistic missile program by Iran and North Korea. North Korea was working on the warhead while Iran worked on the ballistic missile.

Trump tweeted about this nearly two years ago, confirming this link. I wrote about it when he did this.  Nearly everything I said about North Korea in the blog post is now applicable to Iran. This was why he hated the JCPOA, it didn’t actually stop the development of Iran and North Korea into nuclear states.

But tearing up the deal was the wrong approach to solving the problem. Stop pouring hundreds of billions of dollars in weapons to the region, as Iran’s Foreign Minister Javad Zarif pointed out recently, is the problem. By doing this he took both Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese Premier Xi Jinping off his side of the table.

Now he stands isolated with only the provocateurs – Israel, the U.K., Saudi Arabia – trying to goad him forward into doing something he doesn’t want to do. And all of those provocations that have occurred in the past month have failed to move either Trump or the Iranians. They’ve learned patience, possibly from Putin. Call it geopolitical rope-a-dope, if you will.

I said last month that the key to solving Iran’s nuclear ambitions was solving the relationship with North Korea. Trump, smartly, went there, doing what only he could do, talk with DPRK Chairman Kim Jong-Un and reiterate his sincere desire to end proliferation of nuclear weapons.

He can get Iran to the table but he’s going to have to give up something. So, now framing the negotiations with Iran around their demands we stop arming the Saudis is politically feasible.

Trump can’t, at this point, back down directly with Iran. Yemen is deeply unpopular here and ending our support of it would be a boon to Trump politically. Trading that for some sanctions relief would be a good first step to solving the mess he’s in and build some trust.

Firing John Bolton, which looks more likely every day, would be another.

He’s already turning a blind eye to Iranian exports to China, and presumably, other places. I think the Brits are acting independently trying to create havoc and burnish Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt’s resume as Prime Minister against Boris Johnson. That’s why they hijacked the oil tanker.

But all the little distractions are nothing but poison pills to keep from discussing the real issues. Trump just cut through all that. So did Iran. Let’s hope they stay focused.

Any military aggression against Iran will drag entire Mideast into chaos: Nasrallah

Via The Saker

July 20, 2019

Any military aggression against Iran will drag entire Mideast into chaos: Nasrallah

https://www.presstv.com/Detail/2019/07/19/601344/Entire-Middle-East-will-drag-into-hiatus-in-case-war-waged-on-Iran-Nasrallah

In this undated file picture, the Secretary General of the Lebanese Hezbollah resistance movement, Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah (R) meets with Iranian parliament speaker’s special advisor on international affairs, Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, in Beirut, Lebanon.

The secretary general of the Lebanese Hezbollah resistance movement has warned the US that any military aggression against Iran will drag the entire Middle East into disarray, stressing that Washington will definitely not be the one who determines the end of such a scenario.

“As Leader of the Islamic Revolution (Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei) has said, the US is not capable of imposing a military war on Iran. The White House knows that if a war against Iran happens, the entire region will get entangled, and the US will not be the one who finishes it,” Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah said in a meeting with the visiting Iranian parliament speaker’s special advisor on international affairs, Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, in Beirut on Friday.

Tensions have been running high between Tehran and Washington since last year, when US President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew the US from the 2015 multilateral nuclear deal, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), and unleashed the “toughest ever” sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

Recently, the US has taken a quasi-warlike posture against Iran and stepped up its provocative military moves in the Middle East, among them the June 20 incursion of an American spy drone into the Iranian borders.

The Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) shot down the advanced US-made RQ-4 Global Hawk over Iran’s territorial waters off the coastal province of Hormozgan after the unmanned aircraft breached the country’s airspace on a spying mission.

Nasrallah then described resistance as the sole and most efficient option in the face of the Israeli regime’s crimes, acts of aggression and excessive demands.

He also lauded Iran’s political and democratic plan for a referendum among all historic residents of Palestine, inclusive of Muslims, Christians and Jews, as realistic and logical.

“The occupying Zionists, however, are the most irrational creatures on the earth, and do not understand anything other than the discourse of resistance,” the Hezbollah chief noted.

He further termed Trump’s controversial proposal for “peace” between the Israeli regime and Palestinians, dubbed “the deal of the century,” as hollow, stating that the Zionists are the root cause of corruption and insecurity in the region.

Nasrallah also highlighted that Hezbollah bears no grudge against Jews, warning members of the religious community not to play in the hands of Zionists’ land grab policies.

The Hezbollah secretary general emphasized that the anti-Israel resistance front is now in its best form even though the US and the Israeli regime continue with their fiendish moves in the region.

“Americans are seeking to impede the purge of the last remnants of terrorists in Syria, and are prolonging the (Syrian) crisis through various means in a bid to prevent the return of Syrian refugees to their homeland. They will fail in their interventionist policies in the region though,” Nasrallah concluded.

Amir-Abdollahian, for his part, congratulated Hezbollah’s victory during the 33-day war in July 2006, and discussed latest regional and international developments besides bilateral political and parliamentary relations between Tehran and Beirut with the Hezbollah chief.

New scandal around empire of lies

By Mohammad Ghaderi

July 19, 2019

On Thursday, U.S. President Donald Trump, who is also the commander in chief of the country’s armed forces, falsely claimed that a U.S. warship had downed an Iranian drone in the Strait of Hormuz.

Speaking at the White House, Trump said the USS Boxer shot down the drone after it got within 1,000 yards, “ignoring multiple calls to stand down and was threatening the safety of the ship and the ship’s crew.”

Also, the Pentagon announced the Iranian drone was within a “threatening range” of the Boxer.

“At approximately 10 a.m. local time, the amphibious ship USS Boxer was in international waters conducting a planned inbound transit of the Strait of Hormuz,” chief Pentagon spokesman Jonathan Hoffman said in a statement.

The interesting point here is that even the Pentagon did not bother to confirm Trump’s hallucination regarding downing of an Iranian drone, since its statement does not at all refer to the owner of the drone.

But regarding Trump’s false claim, which is an intelligence disaster for a country which boasts of the biggest and most modern army in the world, a few points should be noted:

1- More than approximating reality, Trump’s false and hallucinatory claim of having downed an Iranian drone is rather indicative of the great shock the U.S. suffered after Iran’s Revolution Guards forces downed the Global Hawk spy drone recently, which has become a bitter nightmare for the U.S. president. America’s inability to provide answer in kind to the IRGC’s firm action has severely marred the image of U.S. military power.

This is to say that resort to such false claims by the White House depart to the public mind nothing but desperation.

2- It seems that for Trump to make such a false claim is in fact the indication of the onset of a new era of media and propaganda campaign against the Islamic Republic, with the hope to realize on the political and media arena what has not been achieved in field, thus concealing a deep degree of military powerlessness of the U.S.

Although Trump’s recent move shows how deeply the U.S. has been impressed by a psychological vibe surrounding the ever-increasing military power of Iran, in case the U.S. Army’s decision-making processes are based on such sort of information we should expect increasing risk of U.S. military presence as well as unexpected moves that should ensue.

What should be noted regarding Trump’s claim, is that according to statements by Iranian authorities, all Iranian drones in the Persian Gulf and Strait of Hormuz, including the one mentioned by Trump, have returned home after their reconnaissance missions, and that the USS Boxer has been unable to engage in any sort of confrontation with the drone. This is why we should conclude that Trump has intended to take initiative and create a favorable media vibe for his administration.

3- Creating tension by resorting to false news making is a mechanism constantly tapped by the U.S. and its Western allies, which is especially used over the Persian Gulf with a number of objectives. One of the main objectives is to present Iran as a threat to other regional countries and those whose economy somehow depends on the security of the Persian Gulf. A great part of this hype is created especially to mild the backward Arab leaders, especially those of Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

4- The other noteworthy point is that based on the entire international rights, especially those concerning the rights governing seas, since a great part of the Persian Gulf waters are part of Iran’s territory, it is naturally Iran’s right to use whatever in its power to secure the region. This is while none of the international protocols allow U.S. presence in the Persian Gulf. This is why the White House, seeking help from its allies such as the UK, is trying to misrepresent the Persian Gulf as insecure, and thereby to justify its bullying presence in the region.
* Author: Mohammad Ghaderi , Tehran Times editor in chief and political commentator

His page on Twitter : @ghaderi62 – and Gmail address : m.ghaderi62@gmail.com

IRGC Releases Surveillance Footage in Rebutal to Trump’s Claim about Downing Iranian Drone

IRGC Releases Surveillance Footage in Rebutal to Trump’s Claim about Downing Iranian Drone

TEHRAN (FNA)– The Islamic Revolution Gauds Corps (IRGC) on Friday released the footage that has been recorded by its drone from the USS Boxer during a surveillance mission over the Strait of Hormuz in a move to counter the US president’s allegation that the American navy has downed the aircraft. [+VIDEO]

US President Donald Trump claimed on Thursday that the USS Boxer had fired on an Iranian drone on Thursday, shooting it down in the Strait of Hormuz.

“The Boxer took defensive action against an Iranian drone, which had closed into a near distance, approximately 1000 yards, ignoring multiple calls to stand down threatening safety of ship and ship’s crew,” he said at the White House.

The US president claimed that Iran’s drone “was immediately destroyed.”

Minutes later the Pentagon also issued a statement to confirm the report, but did not claim that the drone was Iranian.

The Pentagon claimed the Iranian drone was within a “threatening range” of the US ship.

“At approximately 10 am local time, the amphibious ship USS Boxer was in international waters conducting a planned inbound transit of the Strait of Hormuz,” chief Pentagon spokesman Jonathan Hoffman said in a statement.

“A fixed wing unmanned aerial system (UAS) approached Boxer and closed within a threatening range. The ship took defensive action against the UAS to ensure the safety of the ship and its crew.”

The top military brass in Tehran rushed to deny the claim. Spokesman for the Iranian Armed Forces Brigadier General Abolfazl Shekarchi said on Friday that Trump’s statement was absurd and baseless, stressing that the false claim about downing an Iranian Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) was intended to increase tensions in international waterways and disrupting security in the Strait of Hormuz.

“Unlike Trump’s delusional and groundless claim, all drones belonging to the Islamic Republic of Iran in the Persian Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz, including the one mentioned by the US president, have returned to their bases safe and sound after carrying out their scheduled surveillance and control operations,” the Armed Forces mouthpiece added.

“The Armed Forces of the Islamic Republic of Iran always feel duty-bound to protect, control, and safeguard the security of the Persian Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz with full vigilance while observing international regulations,” he added.

Hours later on Friday, the IRGC described the US president’s claim as “ridiculous”, and declared that it would release the footage collected by its drone from the US warship to prove the falsity of Washington’s claims.

“We will soon release the footage recorded by the IRGC Aerospace Force drone from the USS Boxer to expose Americans’ baseless claims to the public opinion of the world,” the public relations department of the IRGC announced today.

“The footage will show that the drone of the IRGC’s Aerospace Force was conducting its routine mission in the region before the arrival of the American vessel at the Strait of Hormuz,” read the communique, adding that the drone has sent footage of its “monitoring and surveilling the aforementioned ship both before and after the time that Americans claim”.

The statement added that after recording the footage from the US warship, the drone returned to its base intact.

“The marine and aerospace units of the IRGC vigilantly and continuously monitor the moves by the foreigners, particularly the terrorist forces of the US and the UK in the strategic region, based on their legal duties and for establishing security in the Strait of Hormuz and the Persian Gulf,” it added.

The IRGC reassured that with its complete intelligence dominance and preparedness, it will deliver a proportionate response to any act of aggression and violation of the international law.

http://en.farsnews.com/shares/swf/fvp.swf

The footage released by the IRGC has been recorded by the drone during a surveillance mission over the Strait of Hormuz over the USS Boxer.

IRGC Navy drones routinely fly over the strategic waterway of the Strait of Hormuz to ensure its security for free international maritime transportation.

The footage shows the trafficking of vessels through the Strait of Hurmuz before the arrival of the American warship and continues to cover the area after the US vessel moves forward and then keeps surveilling the USS Boxer.

The IRGC issued a statement after releasing the video on Friday evening, saying that the drone has been watching the USS Boxer and five other US warships accompanying it for three hours, from the time when they had not made an entry into the Strait of Hormuz to the time when exited the waterway.

“During this period, out drone bases have not observed and recorded any unconventional and threatening action by the US terrorist forces on the stated warship,” the IRGC statement reiterated.

“Hence, it is more evident and proved now that the claim raised by the US officials about the shooting down of an Iranian drone in the Strait of Hormuz without any (supportive) evidence has been baseless and a lie,” it added.

The footage indicates that it has been recorded by the Iran-made drone, Mohajer-4, an unmanned aircraft  designed and manufactured for surveillance and reconnaissance missions, with the maximum speed of 200km/phr and flight durability of 7 hours.

The claim by the US president has been refuted by a range of Iranian officials since it was first raised by Donald Trump at a White House event on Thursday. Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Seyed Abbas Araqchi said in a tweet, “We have not lost any drone in the Strait of Hormuz nor anywhere else.”

“I am worried that USS Boxer has shot down their own UAS by mistake!”, he said in sarcastic words.

The incident came almost a month after the IRGC shot down an intruding American spy drone in the country’s southern coastal province of Hormuzgan.

On Tuesday, Commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps Aerospace Force Brigadier General Amir Ali Hajizadeh said the shooting down of a US spy drone over Iranian territorial waters by the IRGC shattered the US military awe.

“The operation to shoot down the US drone in Iran’s sky was successful in every aspect. The operation shattered the awe of the world arrogant power (US) and displayed the rotten and cracked skeleton of the arrogant powers to everyone,” General Hajizadeh said in the Northeastern city of Mashhad on Tuesday.

He added that the different dimensions of the operation will come in light throughout time.

In relevant remarks on Monday, Iranian Defense Minister Brigadier General Amir Hatami underlined Armed Forces’ full preparedness to give a strong response to enemies, saying that downing of a US spy drone over Iran’s territories proved the country’s high capability to defend itself.

“Downing of the US advanced and expensive Global Hawk spy drone by Iran’s integrated air defense surprised foreign experts about the Islamic Republic of Iran’s military capability in defending the country’s borders and confronting the aggressors,” General Hatami said, addressing the Iranian parliamentarians in Tehran.

He underlined that all stages which led to the destruction of the spy drone, including detection, interception and destruction, were completed by using indigenized technology and military equipment, and said, “The Iranian Armed Forces are fully prepared to give a crushing response to any threat and stupidity by enemies and will make them regret their deeds.”

General Hatami stressed that the Iranian Armed Forces would powerfully continue enhancement of their defense power.

Also, last week, Chief of Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces Major General Mohammad Hossein Baqeri warned of his country’s strong and painful response to any enemy offensive.

“Undoubtedly, a hard and crushing response will be waiting for those who intend to harm Iran and its borders’ security,” General Baqeri said during a visit to the country’s Northeastern bordering areas on Wednesday.

He added that the Iranian people, including the Shiites and the Sunnis, along with the country’s Armed Forces would foil any enemy plots against Iran’s sustainable security.

His remarks came after the IRGC Aerospace Force shot down an American spy drone over the territorial waters of Iran near the Strait of Hormuz at dawn on June 20.

Also, US President Donald Trump said the US air force was “cocked and loaded” to attack three Iranian targets a day later, but he called off the strike with 10 minutes to spare after being told that the airstrike might kill as many as 150 people.

Trump said in a series of tweets that he decided that the death toll was not a proportionate response to the Iranian shooting down of a US spy drone off the Iranian coast.

After Trump’s remarks, General Hajizadeh said that his forces could have shot down a US P8 aircraft with 35 on board which was violating Iran’s airspace, but decided to shoot down the drone to only send a message to Washington.

“We intended to send a message to American terrorists in the region,” Brigadier General Hajizadeh said, adding that his forces had also traced a military P8 aircraft violating the airspace of Iran.

“Along with the American drone was an American P8 aircraft with 35 on board, and it was also violating our airspace and we could have downed it too,” he said, adding, “But we did not do (shoot down) it, because our aim was to warn the terrorist forces of the US.”

General Hajizadeh also stressed that Iran was not after war but was fully ready to defend itself, adding that the fate of the downed US spy drone was waiting for any intruding flying object.

“Our response to anything trespassing Iranian territory is like this, and if such acts of aggression are repeated, our response will also be the same,” General Hajizadeh said.

“We don’t embrace war but we are ready to fully defend the country,” he said.

“We possess a collection of US drones which is a proof that US has violated Iran’s airspace and shows that they don’t want to respect the international law,” General Hajizadeh said.

“If such an aggression is repeated, we will add other US (military) products to complete this collection,” he noted.

“The US measure was in violation of international law and we acted according to our legitimate responsibility,” General Hajizadeh said, adding, “It is possible that a US general or some operators were behind this American aggression, we don’t know that. But that measure (intruding into Iranian airspace) is a violation of international aviation rules by a spy drone which then received our natural response.”

Also, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said that his country had retrieved parts of the spy drone that was shot down from the country’s territorial waters, rejecting Washington’s claim that the aircraft was targeted in international waters.

“(The) US drone took off from UAE in stealth mode and violated Iranian airspace,” Zarif wrote on Twitter, adding that the drone “was targeted near… Kouh-e Mobarak” region in the Central district of Jask in Hormuzgan province after the aircraft violated Iran’s airspace.

Zarif even provided the coordinates where the US aircraft was intercepted, and added, “We’ve retrieved sections of the US military drone in OUR territorial waters where it was shot down.”

In an earlier tweet, Zarif stated that Iran “will take this US new aggression to (the) UN and show that the US is lying about international waters”.

The Iranian foreign minister noted that Tehran does not want war, “but will zealously defend our skies, land and waters”.

Meantime, IRGC Commander Major General Hossein Salami stressed that the move should alert Washington officials to stay away.

The incident sent “a clear message” to the US and other enemies that Iran will show a firm and crushing response to any aggression, Salami stated.

“Borders are our red lines and any enemy which violates them will not go back home and will be annihilated. The only way for enemies is to respect Iran’s territorial integrity and national interests,” the major general noted.

Also, earlier this month, General Salami said Iran’s military power and might had taken the military option off the table for the US, stating that the US was fearful of war against Iran.

“We have completely blocked the road to the enemies in the military field and we have reversed the balance. Under the current situation, it is the enemies who are concerned about war and this concern is displayed in their physical and tactical behavior,” General Salami said, addressing the commanders and personnel of Khatam al-Anbia base in Tehran.

He said the US exercised a similar offensive strategy in the political field first, but “eventually, they announced that they didn’t intend to go for a confrontation and called it a quit; in fact, this was a retreat to give them a chance to save themselves from a bottleneck they had created themselves.”

“Today, our global power is very well known and credited, and it includes an extraordinary deterrence capacity; we have managed to shatter the United States’ awe in the world public opinion” on the scene of action, General Salami said.

Related News

How Iran’s Soviet Era Air Defense System Shot Down America’s Global Hawk UAV over Strait of Hormuz

On the night of June 19-20, Iran shot down a US Global Hawk reconnaissance UAV over the Strait of Hormuz.  

President Trump responded by calling for retaliatory air strikes against Iran. 

In response to the President and Commander in Chief’s instructions, US Central Command (CENTCOM), confirmed the deployment of US Air Force F-22 stealth fighters at CENTCOM’s Middle East forward headquarters at the al-Udeid airbase in Qatar, with a mandate to “defend American forces and interests” in the region against Iran. (See Michael Welch, Persian Peril, Global Research, June 30, 2019).

And then Commander in Chief Donald Trump decided spontaneously to retract his decision to bomb Iran, while intimating in his tweet that:

“any attack by Iran on anything American will be met with great and overwhelming force. In some areas overwhelming will mean obliteration”

According to the Washington Post

Early in the day, the president said he called off the attack at the last minute because it would have killed 150 people in retaliation for the downing of the drone. “We were cocked & loaded to retaliate last night on 3 different sights when I asked, how many will die,” he tweeted.

But administration officials said Trump was told earlier Thursday how many casualties could occur if a strike on Iran were carried out and that he had given the green light that morning to prepare the operation.

The confusion reinforced concerns about the Trump administration’s credibility at a time of military crisis.

Headlines of NYT

Trump’s concern for casualties was a smokescreen. What the Pentagon was concerned with was not only Iran’s ability to defend itself in the case of a US attack, but also its potential to strike back,targeting US military facilities in the Middle East.

In a bitter irony, the “high tech” Global Hawk AUV (“with state-of-the-art electronic protection”) was shot down by the “low tech” Raad anti-aircraft missile system, “which bears a striking resemblance to the outdated Soviet Kub (Cube) system”.

“That does not look good”. Visibly there was also an issue of self-esteem, face saving on the part of Donald Trump and failure of US advanced weapons systems.

While Iran possesses Russia’s S-300 air defense system (and will soon be acquiring Russia’s state of the art S-400), Tehran chose not to deploy its most advanced air defense system in the Strait of Hormuz:   

The Raad has a modified homing head, and Iran may have received the homing head technology from Russia.This may explain why the US drone outfitted with state-of-the-art electronic protection failed to escape the attack of the Iranian missile.” (Dmitriy Sudakov, Pravda Report, July 15, 2019)

Sudakov’s analysis published by Pravda provides important details regarding the June 19-20 incident, focussing on Iran’s air defense capabilities as well as the vulnerability of the US in the case of an air attack.

It just so happens that the 15-ton giant drone worth $220 million with a wingspan of 40 meters failed to escape from an Iranian missile. Iran has ceased to reckon with the United States. Amir-Ali Hajizade, the head of the Revolutionary Guard’s aerospace division, said that there was a P-8 Poseidon military aircraft flying next to the US UAV. The P-8 Poseidon was carrying 35 people on board. The military aircraft, the official said, invaded Iranian air space too, but Iran chose not to shoot the airplane down. Instead, Iran shot down the drone.

While the drone was brought down with an upgraded version of an outdated Soviet era technology, Iran is in possession (since 2015) of the S-300 Air defense system, which is considered to be more advanced than the US Patriot system:

In 2016, Iran bought four divisions of S-300 Favorit anti-aircraft missile systems from Russia. Each division includes 12 launchers. The Favorit (“Favorite”) range reaches 200 km; the system can easily eliminate all aircraft, including medium-range missiles.

It is worthy of note that Russia readies to launch a new generation of air defense systems known as S-500 Prometei (Prometheus), while the United States has not been able to design anything that could be superior to Russia’s S-300 missile complex. The THAAD system has a different purpose – to strike trans-atmospheric ballistic missiles. The Patriot system clearly lags behind the S-300. (Dmitriy Sudakov, Pravda Report, July 15, 2019)

According to Sudakov, “Iran can launch a total of about 400 S-300 missiles to distances up to 200 kilometres and 1,500 missiles – up to 40 kilometers.”  What this suggests is that Iran has the ability to trigger extensive damage to US military installations in The Persian Gulf (including US military bases located in Kuwait, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia).

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