MAKICHUK: Iran's Arash drone could up the ante in Ukraine

Chief commander of the army, Major General Abdolrahim Mousavi.
Chief commander of the army, Major General Abdolrahim Mousavi.YouTube screen grab

If the Ukraine military thinks they've got it tough now, with the proliferation of deadly Shaed drones, much worse is to come.

According to The Intelligence Community, the Iranian military has recently unveiled a new, more advanced drone called the Arash, which is said to be a significant upgrade from its predecessor, the Shaed.

The Arash is designed for reconnaissance and surveillance missions, as well as for targeted strikes against enemy targets, the report said. But what sets the Arash apart from the Shaed drone is its improved stealth capabilities, longer flight time and higher payload capacity.

This makes it a far more effective and deadly tool for the Iranian military in carrying out precision strikes against potential threats such as Israel.

And if it ends up in Russia — so far, it has not been officially confirmed — it will cause havoc in Ukraine.

Iranian officials have admitted to fears that giving it to Russia may see it fall into US and British hands. However, that now appears to be a moot point, with breaking developments revealed later in this column.

Chief commander of the army, Major General Abdolrahim Mousavi, who oversaw a public unveiling ceremony earlier this year, said that the Arash and the other new drones in Iran's arsenal, "will definitely improve the combat power" of the four branches of the Iranian Army.

Citing "auspicious developments," Mousavi pointed to the Arash and Bavar drones, which can perform destructive missions, along with long-range and precision strike roles.

Launch of the Arash UAV from a ground installation.
Launch of the Arash UAV from a ground installation.Courtesy Top War

According to the IRGC-affiliated Tasnim News Agency, Iran's drones "have been significantly upgraded and are equipped with advanced features such as self-protection and anti-jamming systems, indigenous multi-navigation systems and smart precision weaponry."

"They are reportedly designed for special and updated capabilities, enabling combined operations with other weapon systems and for network-centric warfare,” added Tasnim.

Due to its advanced technology and capabilities, the Arash also poses a significant danger to potential targets, The Intelligence Community reported.

Its ability to fly longer distances and carry a larger amount of explosives means that it can cause more destruction and casualties in a single strike.

Additionally, its stealth features make it harder to detect and intercept, making it a formidable weapon.

The cost of the Arash drone is not publicly disclosed, but it is clear that Iran has invested heavily in developing and producing this new weapon.

Iran's Ababil drones, also seen at the ceremony, can carry out both reconnaissance missions and engage ground targets.

The newest version, the Ababil-5, can carry up to six Qaem glide bombs or anti-air missiles. Optionally, the drone can be armed with a number of Iranian-produced Almas anti-tank guided missiles.

Iranian Bavar drones sit on their launchpads.
Iranian Bavar drones sit on their launchpads.YouTube screen grab
Iran's advanced Ababil 5 drone.
Iran's advanced Ababil 5 drone.Handout
Arash UAVs sit at the secret underground base in the Zagros mountains.
Arash UAVs sit at the secret underground base in the Zagros mountains.Handout
The weapons stack on the Ababil 5 drone.
The weapons stack on the Ababil 5 drone.Supplied

The Iranian Army also has dozens of Karrar-3 drones, which are turbo-powered and capable of carrying a single munition. Karrar-3 drones have a range of 1,000m and cruise at high speeds, estimated at 700 km/h.

The location of Iran's secret drone base in the southwest of Iran was recently revealed by Alma Centre, a non-profit research organization which focuses on the security challenges on Israel's northern borders.

The UAV base is carved into the Zagros mountains near Shiraz, Fars province.

The location is about 10 km from Shiraz airbase, which also houses the air force's SU-24 jets of the 72nd tactical fighter squadron. 

As mentioned earlier in this column, Iran's missile and drone strike on Israel proved costly for the Islamic regime after surprisingly intact remains of its top secret Arash UAV were recovered from the Negev desert.

According to The Daily Express, Britain is examining the remains of one of Iran’s most top secret kamikaze drones after a spectacular blunder by the Islamic regime allowed it to fall into Western hands.

Its location suggests it had been aimed at one of Israel's largest air force bases at Nevatim, which usually hosts F-35s, surveillance aircraft and even the PM Benjamin Netanyahu's official "Air Force One" plane.

Also known as the Kian 2, the Arash UAV is one of Iran’s latest generation suicide drones and was originally designed to attack Israeli cities such as Tel Aviv and Haifa.

Not much is known about its inner workings, however, and Ministry of Defence scientists, engineers and technicians have now begun to pore through its remains at the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory at Porton Down, Wiltshire.

But its recovery by UK and US forces is a spectacular backfire for Iran.

“Iran’s actions have presented us with a rare opportunity to examine this so-called kamikaze drone, which was found remarkably intact," said one Whitehall source.

Related Stories

No stories found.
Western Standard