Iran to boost spending on missiles and Revolutionary Guards, citing ‘hostile’ U.S. sanctions

Japan Times — Aug 14, 2017

Iran's long-range surface-to-air Sayyad-3 missile. Click to enlarge

Iran’s long-range surface-to-air Sayyad-3 missile. Click to enlarge

Iran’s parliament voted to boost spending on its elite Revolutionary Guards force and missile program in response to new U.S. sanctions.

An additional 20 trillion rials ($609 million) will be evenly divided between the missile program, to improve the nation’s “deterrent capability,” and Guards’ Qods force, which is active throughout the region, according to the bill published by the Tasnim news agency. The bill cites “hostile” U.S. policies against Iran, and American “adventurism in the region aimed at creating divisions,” Tasnim reported.

President Donald Trump has threatened to withdraw from a 2015 agreement between world powers and Iran that curbed the Islamic Republic’s nuclear program in exchange for sanctions relief, saying it is too advantageous to Tehran. Since the start of Trump’s term, the U.S. has applied new sanctions against Iran’s ballistic missile program and the Guards.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, who oversaw the passing of the international agreement during then-President Barack Obama’s administration, spoke once more against actions that would undermine the deal.

“Anyone who harms the accord harms himself and his country,” Rouhani was quoted as saying by the Iranian Students News Agency. If the U.S. seeks to act against the agreement “everyone will side with us and against the person who wants to weaken it” he said in reference to other signatories to the deal including Germany and France, which have expressed their support for its continuation.

The bill, which had been considered in parliament for the past two months, constitutes a “first step,” Parliamentary Speaker Ali Larijani was quoted as saying by the official Islamic Republic News Agency. If the U.S. applies sanctions that violate the multiparty nuclear deal with Iran, the Iranian government will be bound to react, Larijani said.

The bill needs to be approved by Iran’s Guardian Council, a body of Islamic law experts and jurists, in order to take effect.


Footnote — Aug 14, 2017

Footage from air defence drills earlier this year illustrates how Iran is steadily developing its ability to repel America’s favoured military tactic: the use air power, as was seen in Vietnam, the former Yugoslavia and Iraq.
The extent of its radars and the sophistication of its locally developed weapons now make it questionable whether the sort of air campaign that was crucial to the 2003 Iraq invasion could succeed with Iran.
Iran has made substantial progress in the development of missiles. That’s why the U.S. wants to impose more sanctions: to contain any further development as Iran nears the point where it could repel an all-out Western air campaign.
In fact it may even be able to do so now. Ed.

Iran IRGC Aerospace Division “Defenders of the Velayat Skies” drillرزمایش مدافعان حریم ولایت

Ali Javid — You Tube July 24, 2017

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