Friday, March 15, 2013

Iran. Destroyers. Drone Pursuit. Ballistic Missile Test Fire. Obama's Red Line.

Iran docks Damavand destroyer for test purposes

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency
Tehran, March 15, IRNA -- Domestically-made Damavand destroyer was docked for test, Commander of the Iranian navy for research and self-sufficiency jihad Rear Admiral Ali Gholamzadeh said on Friday.
He made the remarks in an exclusive interview with IRNA.
'Damavand destroyer will become operational in the month ahead for dispatch to the international waters,' Rear Admiral Gholamzadeh
Iran's 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.
Iran's naval power has even been acknowledged by foes. In a September 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 Islamic Republic has excelled in naval capabilities and is able to wage unique asymmetric warfare against larger naval forces.
Defense analysts and military observers say that Iran's war-game and its advancements in weapons production have proved as a deterrent factor, especially at a time of heightened threats by the US.
In November, Iranian Navy launched the main structure Sina-7 missile launching frigate. Navy also started using two new home-made Qadir-class light submarines and two hovercrafts.
In September, the main structure of the Islamic Republic of Iran Sahand (IRI Sahand) missile destroyer was officially launched by the Iranian Navy in Iran's Southern port city of Bandar Abbas.
Iran's first home-made destroyer, Jamaran, was launched in late February 2010. The Mowdge Class vessel has a displacement of around 14,000 tons and is equipped with modern radars and electronic warfare capabilities and is armed with a variety of anti-ship, surface-to-surface and surface-to-air missiles.
Iranian officials have repeatedly warned the trans-regional states, specially the US, to pull their troops and warships out of the Persian Gulf, underlining the necessity for the establishment of security in the Persian Gulf through extensive and all-out cooperation among the regional states.
In relevant remarks in December, a senior military aide to the Iranian Supreme Leader said that trans-regional powers are trying to confine Iran's power through sparking insecurity around the country.
'The trans-regional enemies are pursuing a certain view (on Iran) and are creating insecurities in the regions around our country in a bid to block the Islamic Republic of Iran's progress and emergence of a mighty Iran,' senior Military Aide to the Supreme Leader of Islamic Revolution Major General Yahya Rahim Safavi said at the time.
He further said that the Persian Gulf region plays a key role in Iran's plans for progress and prosperity, and underlined the necessity for advancement, justice and durable security in the region.
Meanwhile, in recent years, Iran’s Navy has been increasing its presence in international waters to protect naval routes and provide security for Iranian merchant vessels and tankers.
In addition, in line with the international efforts to combat piracy, the Iranian Navy has been conducting anti-piracy patrols in the Gulf of Aden since November 2008 to safeguard the vessels involved in maritime trade, especially the ships and oil tankers owned or leased by Iran.

U.S. Drone Over Persian Gulf Pursued by Iranian Jet

A U.S. military drone operating over international waters in the Persian Gulf was pursued by an Iranian military aircraft on March 12, according to the Pentagon.

The MQ-1 Predator drone, which was accompanied by two manned U.S. military airplanes, was conducting a classified surveillance flight in international airspace when it was approached by an Iranian F-4 jet that came within 16 miles (26 kilometers) of the unmanned plane, Pentagon spokesman George Little said yesterday in an e-mailed statement. After a “verbal warning” from the U.S., the Iranian plane broke off, according to the statement.

The incident is the latest in episodes going back to December 2011, when Iran said it captured a stealthy U.S. drone. In November 2012, the Pentagon said Iranian aircraft had fired on an unarmed Predator drone that was conducting routine surveillance over international waters.

After the incident in November, “the United States communicated to the Iranians that we will continue to conduct surveillance flights over international waters consistent with long-standing practice and our commitment to the security of the region,” Little said in the statement. “We also communicated that we reserve the right to protect our military assets as well as our forces and will continue to do so going forward.”

The latest incident was reported earlier yesterday by CNN.
International tensions over the Persian Gulf have increased as the U.S. and allies have tightened economic sanctions aimed at forcing Iran to abandon elements of its nuclear program they say could be used to develop an atomic bomb. Last year, Iranian officials periodically threatened to close the Strait of Hormuz, which leads into the gulf and through which about 20 percent of the world’s oil transits.
Design By Humans
Iran test fires ballistic missiles

Islamic Republic launches Fajr-5 rockets, used by Hamas to attack Israel, and longer range Nazeat 10

March 14, 2013, 12:30 pm
Members of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard celebrate after launching a missile, July 2012 (photo credit: AP/IRNA, Mostafa Qotbi)
Members of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard celebrate after launching a missile, July 2012 (photo credit: AP/IRNA, Mostafa Qotbi)

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iranian media said the military has test-fired several short-range missiles, including the type Palestinian militant Hamas group used to attack Tel Aviv last November.
Thursday’s report by the semi-official Fars news agency said the missiles were tested during an army exercise in central Iran. It said the missiles fired were Nazeat-10 and Fajr-5.
During weeks of fighting in November, Gaza’s Hamas rulers fired Iranian-made Fajr-5 rockets that came close to Israel’s heartland, including the cities of Tel Aviv and Jerusalem for the first time.
Later, Iran admitted supplying Hamas with the technology to produce Fajr-5. The missile has a range of 75 kilometers, or 45 miles. The range of the Nazeat-10 missiles is about 100 kilometers, or 62 miles.
Iran regularly holds maneuver to test and promote its military power.

Iran to launch Jamaran 2 destroyer in Caspian Sea: Defense minister

Iran Press TV
Tue Mar 12, 2013 9:40AM GMT
Iranian Defense Minister Brigadier General Ahmad Vahidi says the country plans to launch the indigenous Jamaran 2 destroyer in the Caspian Sea in the near future.
Vahidi said on Monday that the new warship is the symbol of the power of the Defense Ministry’s Marine Industries.
“After being launched and undergoing final tests… this destroyer will be delivered to Iran’s Navy,” Vahidi added.
In recent years, Iran has made great achievements in its defense sector and attained self-sufficiency in producing essential military equipment and systems.
Iran's Navy launched the indigenous Sahand destroyer in the southern port of Bandar Abbas on September 8, 2012 alongside the overhauled super-heavy Tareq 901 submarine.
The Iranian Navy launched its first destroyer, Jamaran, in the waters of the Persian Gulf in February 2010. The 1,420-ton vessel is equipped with modern radar systems and other electronic warfare capabilities.
Tehran has repeatedly assured other countries that its military might poses no threat to other states, insisting that the Islamic Republic’s defense doctrine is entirely based on deterrence.

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