(December 9, 2018 / MEMRI) In recent days, commanders of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) have referred extensively to Iran’s offensive capabilities against U.S. targets, presumably in an attempt to deter the United States from taking military action, as well as new economic measures, against Iran.
IRGC Aerospace and Missile Force commander Amir Ali Hajizadeh boasted that the U.S. bases close to Iran are within range of its missiles and expressed his pride in Iran’s drone capabilities, which are based, inter alia, on American and Israeli drones that it has captured.
Hamza Ali Kavyani, Iranian army deputy naval coordinator, announced that Iran would soon equip its drones with anti-ship weapons, and that it had already armed its submarines with cruise missiles.
Basij Commander Gholam-Hossein Gheibparvar said Iran has adopted an offensive cyber strategy in order to confront the Western enemy, and former Basij commander and current IRGC cultural affairs director Mohammad Reza Naqdi called on the United States to “separate its affairs from those of the Zionists” and “move its outposts away from the Islamic ummah” if it wants to “emerge from this battle alive.”
The following are excerpts from the statements by these commanders:
‘U.S. bases near Iran are within range of our missiles’
In a Nov. 22 interview on Iran’s Channel 1, IRGC Aerospace and Missile Force commander Amir Ali Hajizadeh referred to the IRGC’s missile and drone capabilities, saying: “The U.S. bases near Iran are within range of our missiles and are [easy] prey for us. For example, some of these bases are [only] 300 or 400 km from us, such as the Al-‘Udeid base in Qatar, the Al-Dhafra base in the UAE and [the base] in Kandahar [Afghanistan]. We even know the exact location of the U.S. RQ-170 [Sentinel] drone at the Kandahar base. These bases, which once threatened us, now present us with an opportunity.
“You have seen that our 700 km-range ballistic missiles are accurate. We cannot use them in the Persian Gulf, but we can in the Sea of Oman. Just think: The American aircraft carries with 40-50 fighter planes and 6,000 crew are the center of our target.
“Today, we have the largest collection of drones, war booty seized from the U.S. and Israel: the MQ, MQ1 [Predator], ScanEagle and RQ-170 from the U.S., and the Israeli Hermes [drone]. In this area, we are in fourth or fifth place in the world, and in the region, and as far as the strength of our armed forces goes, we are in first place … ”
IRGC Aerospace and Missile Force commander Amir Ali Hajizadeh (Source: Fars, Iran, Nov. 22, 2018)
Full report at MEMRI.