US vs Iran
From examining these military manoeuvres and the types of weapons employed, one can guess at how Iran intends to respond to any US attack. Iran intends to use its regular army of 350000 men to fight a conventional war, while conducting an asymmetric war with its 100000 Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) plus at least 100,000 Basij forces (volunteer forces) on three fronts.
If Iran is attacked, it will take the fight to the Americans wherever they can find them: Persian Gulf, Iraq, and Afghanistan. There are currently about 190000 American troops stationed around Iran. Recently the Commander of Islamic Revolution's Guards Corps (IRGC) Major General Yahya Rahim Safavi told the Iranian ‘Ya Ressalat’ newspaper that “more than 190,000 members of American forces are scattered in Afghanistan and Iraq. If the US carries out its threats against Iran, they must know that all these forces will be within our reach". All the exercises and manoeuvres also indicate that any air attack by US will automatically escalate to a region wide conflict. Iran has the following manpower at its disposal.
Iran’s ground forces are composed of the army, Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) (Persian: Pasdaran) and the paramilitary volunteer force (Persian: Basij). The army has 350000 men of which 200000 are conscripts (18 months of military service). The army also has a reserve pool of 350000 men.
The Islamic Revolution’s Guard Corps or IRGC was created just after the revolution in May 1979. Although its main job was to protect the revolution and its achievement, it soon was employed in the Iran-Iraq War. During the war IRGC grew from the original 30000 men (1979) to 350000 men (1986). Today IRGC troop’s strength is estimated to be around 100000. It is believed that the IRGC is trained for land and naval symmetrical warfare.
Dr. Abbas Bakhtiar