IRGC Mounts Big, Heavy Missiles on Small Vessels, Helicopters
The Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) announced that it has equipped its small vessels and helicopters with big and heavy missiles capable of targeting warships.
“Given the mission we have been assigned to and due to our self-belief, we have been able to design and build equipments for our vessels, including the equipment of our small helicopters with big anti-warship missiles and mounting and equipping small vessels and helicopters with heavy missiles,” IRGC Navy Commander Rear Admiral Ali Fadavi said.
“We believe that one of the most unique centers in which science has been produced is the IRGC Navy and it has overtaken other forces in this area of activity,” he added.
Fadavi’s remarks may refer to the IRGC’s long-range cruise missiles, including Nour missile with the range of over 120km and Qader missile with the range of over 200km.
Anti-ship Nour and Qader cruise missile systems are ultra-advanced and self-relying systems which have remarkably improved in radar, satellite, precision, range and navigation terms compared to their predecessors.
In September 2011, Iran unveiled its 200-km range Qader anti-ship cruise missile with a high-precision striking capability and the Iranian defense industries have mass-produced the powerful missile.
The missile enjoys automatic digital pilot system, high-precision navigation systems, high-precision striking capability, anti-jamming radar systems and a rapid deployment capability.
Its coast-to-sea and surface-to-surface versions have previously been tested by Iranian armed forces and now the air-launched version of the Qader missile was unveiled by the Iranian Army during the military parades held in Tehran on Thursday on the occasion of the National Army Day.
Arming Iranian aircraft and choppers with 200-km range Qader cruise missile will boost the Iranian Armed Forces’ power for combating and repelling naval threats.
The IRGC is responsible for the security of the Persian Gulf. In 2008, Major General Yahya Rahim Safavi, former commander of the IRGC and the current military advisor to the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution, declared that the responsibility for defending the Persian Gulf had been handed over to the IRGC.
He warned that the IRGC would seal the strategic Strait of Hormuz in case the US launches any attack on Iran’s nuclear installations.
Iran’s naval power has even been acknowledged by foes. In a Sep. 11, 2008 report, the Washington Institute for the Near East Policy said that in the two decades since the Iraqi imposed war on Iran, the IRGC has excelled in naval capabilities and is able to wage unique asymmetric warfare against larger naval forces.
According to the report, the IRGC Navy has been transformed into a highly motivated, well-equipped, and well-financed force and is effectively in control of the world’s oil lifeline, the Strait of Hormuz.
The study says that if Washington takes military action against the Islamic Republic, the scale of Iran’s response would likely be proportional to the scale of the damage inflicted on Iranian assets.