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US vs Iran

Hybrid War

Early in 1994, Iran unveiled a new MBT called the Zulfigar which has been developed by 'Construction Crusade', an arm of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps. “Six semi- industrial prototypes of the tank were produced and tested in 1997. In April 1997 Acting Commander of the Ground Forces of the Iranian Army, Lieutenant General Mohammad Reza Ashtiani announced that the mass production of Zulfiqar tanks, which began in 1996, was still in progress. He stated that the manufacture of 520 different kinds of tank parts, 600 artillery parts, repair of 500 tanks and armored vehicles have been carried out. In late July 1997 Iranian President Hashemi Rafsanjani of Iran formally inaugurated a production line for the domestically manufactured Zulfiqar main battle tanks and Boragh tracked armoured personnel carriers. The facility, the Shahid Kolah Dooz Industrial Complex, will also produce the BMT- 2 personnel carrier identified. The Iranian tank is armed with a 125mm smoothbore gun fitted with a fume extractor which may be fed from an automatic loader. It is known that the Zulfiqar uses suspension like that fitted to Western MBTs such as the M48/M60 MBT. The diesel engine is not taken from the T-72 since this has a distinct exhaust outlet on the left side of the hull. This feature is absent on the Zulfiqar.” [62]

According to Iran, the Zulfigar MBT features an NBC system, good cross-country mobility, advanced fire control system and laser range-finder for improved first round hit capability and reinforced passive armour. It has a combat weight of 40 tonnes, is powered by a 1,000 hp diesel engine and has a maximum road speed of 70 km/h. Iranian sources also claim that the Zulfigar is fitted with a weapon stabilization system and a computerized fire-control system which includes a laser range-finder. Night vision equipment is also fitted.

BORAGH Armoured Infantry Fighting Vehicle

Prior to the revolution, Iran bought a great number of BMPs from United States. After the revolution Iran began using the Soviet/Russian/Chinese … BMP-1 and BMP-2. In the 1990s they approached the Russians to produce the Russian BMP-2 under licence. The contract was signed but later was cancelled. After a few years the Defence Industries Organisation (DOI) announced that it had developed its own BMP-2 called Boragh. Boragh is a modified version of the Chinese type WZ 501/503 armoured infantry fighting vehicle, which in turn is a derivative of the Soviet BMP-1. It has a combat weight of 13300 kg and a top speed of 65 km/h. Boragh comes in many versions: with 73 mm gun and RAAD-T anti-tank missile or ambulance or command post. Some versions are fully amphibious and are

Dr. Abbas Bakhtiar

Page: 60

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