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Monday, April 12, 2010

Iran producing its own anti-aircraft system

Iran has developed its own anti-aircraft system called the Mersad (Ambush). The Mersad is outfitted with Shahin missiles, which are a local version of the US-developed Hawk missile from the 1970's.
According to a photo released by Iran's Defense Ministry, the Mersad will launch Iran's Shahin missiles, a local version of the 1970s-era US-manufactured Hawk missile.

The Hawk missile has a range 24 kilometers with a 119-pound warhead and was sold the Iran before the 1979 Islamic revolution.
But the Shahin's can only hit low and medium-flying aircraft and the 24-kilometer range is nowhere near the range of the modern S-300 system that Iran still hopes to purchase from Russia. So is Iran giving up on the S-300? I'd say they're hedging their bets. But the Mersad with the Shahin is a poor substitute for the S-300.

If Israel gets indications that Russia is going to supply the S-300, I'd expect an almost immediate Israeli attack on Iran.


At 3:10 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Carl and others - here is a link to intel on the composition of Iran's AD system.


Most of the missiles are for point defense around critical targets, and the long range S-200 is not fully deployed - I agree with the assessment of the author that in any attack it will be destroyed first. While an S-300 would be a radical upgrade, having lots of smaller short range missiles clustered around the nuclear sites also makes attacks much more difficult. Quantity has a quality of its own!


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