Sunday, March 23, 2014

Translation - Military Forces Over the Past Year, Part 2 (Rouhani's Demands of Sepah / Missile Exercise Controversy )

  • The Supreme National Security Council reportedly told the IRGC (Sepah) to halt missile exercises over the past year. Current SNSC secretary (Adm. Shamkhani) denies this while IRGC commanders claim that exercises are continuing as planned.
  • IRGC arrests 'cyber-activists' in Kerman for the crime of - among others - communicating with foreigners. 
  • Continued combat operations by the IRGC in south-west region.
  • Army and IRGC forces conducted disaster relief in northern provinces.
  • New 'Khatam al-Anbiya' naval zones formed to deconflict IRGCN/IRIN operations
  • Promotions and transfers within chain of command include:
    • Defense Minister (MODAFL): Brig. Gen. Hossein Deghan 
      • Advisor to DM: Rostam Qasemi (fmr oil minister)
    • SNSC Secretary: Adm. Shamkhani
    • Head of the Center for Strategic Defense Resarch: Brig. Gen. Vahidi (former-DM)
      • Vahidi also heads Expediency Council's Politics, Defense & Security Committee
    •  Army Coordination Deputy: Hassan Saifi (fmr head of Organization for Preservation and Publication of the Sacred Defense)
    • IRIAF Deputy Commander: Alireza Barkhour (fmr commander of TAB-8 /  Isfahan Air Base)
    • IRIAF, TAB-8 Commander (Isfahan): Masoud Roozkhosh
    • IRIAF, TAB-2 Commander (Tabriz): Col. Hamid Vahedi
    • IRIN Coordination Deputy: Adm. Peyman Jafari Tehrani
    • Head of MODAFL's Naval Industries Organization: Adm. Rastegari (fmr IRIN coordination deputy)
    • IRIN Aviation Commander: Captain Ismaelian
    • IRGCGF Najaf Ashraf Headquarters (Kermanshah) Commander: Gen. Mohammed Nazer Azimi

Title: Rouhani's Demands of Sepah / Missile Exercise Controversy
Date: March 16, 2014 / Esfand 25, 1392
Source: Mashregh News

*Rouhani requests Help from Sepah

Hassan Rouhani, the president of Iran, remarked during the annual meeting of Sepah commanders: We want Sepah to take some of the government's burden.

Rouhani emphasized: As president, I want [help from Sepah] so that the people witness their sacrifice in the defeat of the enemy in the domain of livelihood & production.

*Basij exercises held in 28 provinces

'Towards Jerusalem' exercises is a series of Basij exercises which started last year and [whose] second round was held this year in 28 provinces across the country.

… in the next year, we should witness 2 other exercises by the Sepah's Imam Hussein & Beit al-Moqdas [battalions] held respectively in the Alborz & Kurdistan provinces.

*The Supreme National Security Council Prevents Missile Exercises

On March 11, 2013, 23 MPs sent a letter to the president, reminding him of the lack of support for missile exercises.

The note said: Unfortunatly, for the first time in the past 10 years, permission for the large annual missile exercise was suspended and the funding to support the military force's emergency plans has not been given by the SNSC,

*Sepah exercises continue until the end of the year

[Following] the cessation of missile exercises, General Ramazan Sharif, the Sepah General Staff's PR officer said: Sepah exercises usually [include] 2 specialized exercises and joint-forces exercises [total of four?)

*No interruption in the completion of Sepah exercises 

General Hossein Salami, the deputy Sepah commander, said in reaction to this news[:] Sepah exercises are conducted in accordance with plans prior predictions and there will not be any interruptions in [their] completion

*Shamkhani's cancellation of missile exercises denied 

Finally, SNSC Secretary Admiral Ali Shamkhani, in his reaction to the MP's statement, denied that the SNSC cancelled the exercises, and said: This news is not true. Our friends were confused.

Shamkhani added: We explained this to them in a meeting.

*The 'Fateh-1' Award Given to General Pakpour by the Commander in Chief 

Ayatollah Khamenei (CiC) gave General Pakpour – commander of the Sepah Ground Forces – the Fateh One medal.

*Sepah Intelligence detained several cyber-activists associated with foreigners

Several cyber-activist associated with foreigners were arrested in Kerman by Sepah intelligence.

According to one official, these people are accused of participating in a sophisticated media-security network, committing cyber-crimes, and communicating with foreigners.

*Freeing Hostages and the Destruction of a number of bandits in the south-east of the country by Sepah

In the wake of the bandit's attempt to kidnap two Iranians, Sepah Ground Forces from the Qods Headquarters killed a number of bandits in addition to freeing hostages during a surprise operation in the greater Iranshahr area

In this operation, three bandits were killed and three others arrested.

*Details of the Martyrdom of 3 Sepah engineers in Saravan

3 Engineers from the Sepah Ground Forces' Qods HQ were martyred in the Saravan border region.

The engineer's vehicle, which was [part of the border-security construction project], hit an explosive device left by bandits and smugglers, martyring three of them.

*Special Order from the Supreme Commander of the Sepah for disaster relief in the Mazandaran and Gilan provinces

Following heavy rain and snow in th north, Maj. Gen. Jafari issued a special order to Sepah commanders in these two provinces to provide assistance.

*Armored units and Army helicopters deployed to help the northern provinces by order of Maj. Gen Salehi.

The Army's supreme commander issued instructions to units deployed in the Gilan and Mazandaran regions to provide necessary help and assistance to people trapped by snow.

In this regard, the army helped by dispatching engineering equipment [including] bulldozers, loaders and heavy vehicles, [and also provided] ambulances, and medical equiopment, as well as personnel to clear snow.

[*Presentation of Scan Eagle UAV to Russians] 

*Formation of the Khatam al-Anbiya Naval Headquarters

Two HQs, KaA 1 (Army Navy), and KaA 2 (Sepah Navy) were formed for better coordination and operational command between units operating in territorial and international waters, the first of which is located in the Sea of Oman and international waters, while the second is the in Persian Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz. Of course, both are deployed under the command of the central KaA HQ.

*Sepah security for nuclear scientists 
After the assassination of nuclear scientists, protection of these individuals was assigned to Sepah , and [afterwards] we did not witness any assassinations …

*General Hossein Deghan the 11th Defense Minister

General Deghan was elected as MODAFL deputy with 269 yes-votes, 10 no-votes, and 5 absentations

*Admiral Shamkhani appointed as SNSC Secretary 

*General Vahidi appointed as head of the Center for Strategic Defense Research 
With the appoitment of Shamkhani to the SNSC, the former DM, replaced him as the CSDR.

Vahidi also heads the Politics, Defense, and Security Commission in the expediency council

*Amir Alireza Barkhour Deputy commander of the IRIAF

Alireza Barkhour ,the former commander of the Shahid Babaei Air Base in Isfahan, was promoted to the rank of Brig. Gen. [and] was appointed deputy commander of the IRIAF.

Previously, Amir Khalaban Mohsen Darehbaghi was the deputy IRIAF commander.

*Admiral 'Jafari Tehrani' IRIN coordinating deputy

Admiral Peyman Jafari Tehrani was promoted to Brig. Gen. and appointed to the position of coordinating deputy by order of Admiral Sayyari (IRIN commander) and was approved by Maj. Gen. Salehi (Artesh Commander).

Prior to that, Admiral Rastegari served as the coordinating deputy, who now serves as the head of the MoD's Naval Industries Organization.

*New responsabilty for Rostam Qasemi 
Rostam Qasemi, the former oil minister, was appointed as senior advisor to General Hossein Deghan at MODAFL

*Appointment of a new commander for IRIN Naval Aviation 
By order of IRIN commander Habibollah Sayyari, Captain Ismaelian was appointed as commander of naval aviation.

Before this, Admiral Nayyeri commanded this unit.

*General Azimi as the commander of the Najaf Ashraf Headquarters

Sardar Mohammed Nazer Azimi, commander of the 'Nabi Akram' Sepah [in] the Kermanshah province, was appointed as commander of the Najaf Ashraf HQ by order of Maj. Gen. Jafari, while retaining his previous position.

Previously, Sardar Ali Akbar Nouri commanded this regional HQ.

*Appointment of Amir Saifi to Army manpower deputy

Amir Hassan Saifi was appointed to the position of Manpower Deputy for the Army by order of Maj. Gen. Ataollah Salehi, Commander of the Army.

Previosly, Amir Saifi [was] the head of the Organization for the Preservation and Publication of the Sacred Defense.

*New Commanders Appointed for the Isfahan and Tabriz Air Bases

After the appointment of Amir Alireza Barkhouri to Deputy IRIAF Commander, and his [departure] from the eight air base in Isfahan (Shahid Babaei Base), Amir Masoud Roozkhosh was appointed as commander of this base.

Prior to this, Roozkhosh was commander of the second air base in Tabriz (Shahid Fakoori [Base]), which [is now commanded] by Colonel Hamid Vahedi.

*New head of the IRIN's political-ideology offices 
Hojjat ol-Eslam Mohammed Bagher Roshandel was appointed as the new head of the IRIN's Political-Ideology Offices, and his inauguration ceremony was attended by Admiral Sayyari , and [other top IRIN commanders].

*Two IRIN Commanders Promoted

… Captain Khanzadi, the IRIN's Planning and Programs Deputy, and Captain Shafai, the commander of the IRIN's third naval district, were promoted to the rank of Vice Admiral.


  1. Hello, sorry but this is not a question related to your nice article.

    But I have a question about the Iranian UAV Shahed 129. Did you think's that this drone is really capable of targeting ground ennemie with their missille ?

    And if this drone is realy capable to do thaht, did you think's that Iran will sent the Shaded 129 in Syria ? Because I read that Iran will begin to sell an export version of the Shaded 129 and Iran aleready sent iranian drone in Syria.

    Sorry for my bad english.

  2. No problem at all, either with your English, or the comment's location.

    Generally speaking, the Shahed 129 (and the Fotros as well) appear to be credible UAVs. In many ways, they're not too different from existing UAVs such as the AB-3 or the Mohajer, just on a larger scale. In other words, it appears to be an evolutionary, rather than revolutionary design.

    The implication for this is that there probably isn't a lot of space for these designs to be catastrophic failures. We can reasonably expect them to function as well as the current (or rather, previous) generation of UAVS, which - as far as we can tell anyway - is more than adequate.

    Regarding the use of missiles in particular, there were at least a handful of seeker variants displayed during the unveiling of the S-129, which suggests that they're still developing the armaments. Theoretically, there's no reason that these wouldn't work, it's just a question of willingness to develop, test, purchase, and then field these systems.

    As you note, since Iran has been more than willing to provide the AB-3 and Yasir UAVS to Syria, we could also see their deployment in Syria. The use of precision-guided weaponry would certainly be a boon to the pro-gov't tactical operations.

    It's worthwhile to note that in the same way that the growing reliance by the Assad gov't on non-state and foreign groups (i.e. Lebanese and Iraqi Shia) has strengthened Iran's hand, supplanting the SyAAF with Iranian or Hezbollah airpower could similarly shift the balance of power away from the Assad gov't itself, towards non-state (but pro-Assad) forces.

    I'd be interested to see where you read that Iran is looking to export the S-129. Off the top of my head, I don't remember seeing that before.

    1. Thx for the reply.

      For the export version, I read it on the translation of the presentation video of the Shahed 129: I don't speak Farsi so I don't know if the translation is accurate.

      The probleme is that for what I know: Iran can't sell their weapon in legally.

  3. Thanks. It sounds like, from the translation, that this is a general export claim along the lines of "we're open to exporting it", rather than a concrete "customers A, B and C are lined up to buy it"

    You're right with regard to the prohibition of arms exports. This would fall under the auspices of UNSCR 1747.

    Of course, Iran has never really been bound by these when it comes to supplying arms. Venezuela is operating the Mohajer, to say nothing of arms supplies to Hezbollah and Syria. Of course, these sanctions would still prevent Iran from becoming a large-scale exporter who can take advantage of the white market. This was demonstrated with the rumors about potential arms sales to Iraq, which drew swift criticism from Washington.

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