Israel’s military is closely watching the war games staged this week by the different arms of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards – aerospace, ground units, navy and missiles, which DEBKAfile reports are focusing for the first time ever on defensive scenarios for thwarting a possible Israeli attack, including the landing of ground troops. (These drills were first reported on this site on Dec. 20).
Our military sources point to steps that attest to the unacknowledged scenario of warding off an Israeli invading force as well as crippling air attacks:
- Underground bunkers were installed in Iran’s main cities from which IRGC forces propose to come out and tackle an invading force while it is still 4km away.
- The buildup of defense installations on Iran’s offshore islands of Abu Musa, 70km from central-south Iran, Kashan, close to Isfahan, Greater Tunb and Lesser Tunb, near the Straits of Hormuz, and Larak Island, which overlooks Iran’s main oil export terminals. The planners of the Guards war games postulate Israeli troops making their first landings on these islands to serve as launch pads for the invasion of the Iranian mainland.
- The units taking part in the exercise have been split into two forces (on the same lines as Egyptian war games), the “Orange” army representing the IDF against the “Blue” army of Iran.
- The Orange force is counted on being technologically superior to the Blue side and its air force – indicating the expectation of massive Israeli air strikes deep inside Iran and heavy carpet bombing that will cause mass casualties.
- The IRGC exercise shows reliance on their anti-air Khordad 3 rockets (see photo), which are mobile and have a range of 500km. Its commanders estimate that this weapon is up to tackling Israel’s F-35 stealth warplanes.
- Different types of cruise missiles are being launched as part of the exercise.
- The IRGC publication Kayhan, a regular mouthpiece for supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, this week published a new threat. In the event of an attack, Iran will immediately switch to enriching uranium up to 90pc, i.e., weapons grade.