Iran tests missiles for hitting Israel, US bases, first space monkey in July
Tuesday, June 28, Day Two of the Great Prophet Mohammad War Games 6, Iran made a point of flexing muscle in the direction of the United States and Israel. After simultaneously test-firing 14 2,000-range missiles at a single target, Commander Amir Ali Hajizadeh, head of the Revolutionary Guards' aerospace division, emphasized: "Iranian missiles can target US bases in Afghanistan and any part of Israeli territory."
He boasted America had made Iran's task easier: "Their military bases in the region are in a range of 130, 250 and maximum 700 kilometers in Afghanistan which we can hit with these missiles."
debkafile's military sources note that this was the first time Tehran had threatened US bases in Afghanistan.
Asked whether Iranian missiles were a threat to Europe, Hajizadeh said that while Iran had the technological capacity to build longer-range missiles, the 2,000-km range had been chosen precisely with Israel and US bases in mind, because "we do not feel a threat from any other country." The Iranian commander clearly aimed at calming European fears of attack, especially Britain, France, Germany and Italy.
This statement should be taken with a very large pinch of salt. According to our sources, Iran is working at top speed on at least three new operational ballistic surface missiles with longer ranges. They are Shahab-4, for targets at a distance of 3,200-4,000 kilometers; the Sejjil (2,500 kilometers) and the Ashura-Ghadr 110A (3,000 kilometers). Shahab-4 and Ashura/Ghadr 110A are quite capable of hitting central and western Europe. Iran is furthermore developing intercontinental ballistic missiles – Shahab-5 (5,000 kilometers) and Shahab-6 (10,000 kilometers) – which put North America within range.
Iran's missile industry will take another leap forward in July with the planned launch of the Kavoshgar-5 rocket for putting a monkey in space. Iranian media claim that five monkeys, one of which will be chosen for the mission, have completed their training.
debkafile's military sources report that since launching the Omid, which weighed only 27 kilos, in February 2009, the Iranian aerospace industry has made major strides if it can put a monkey, requiring a payload of 330 kilos, into space. This capability means that Iran has reached the capacity to fire a nuclear-armed missile at any point on the planet.
After the Omid's success two and-a-half years ago, US and Israeli missile and intelligence experts warned the Obama administration and the Israeli government that Tehran had achieved a dangerous technological and military breakthrough on the road to a nuclear weapon. Both refrained from addressing the threat then and even now do not seem too interested.