Considered one of the most powerful forces in their region, Iran maintains its potential in many areas, including the armed forces.
In its structure, the Islamic Republic of Iran maintains an armed force consisting of a full-fledged army with ground forces, air forces and fleet. In addition, there is a separate structure called the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), which also has its own ground forces, air force and navy. Despite the formal separation, both the army and the IRGC have similar goals and in most cases should work together.
The most numerous structure of Iran’s armed forces is the ground forces. The Army has 350,000 troops. Ground forces have 8 armored brigades, 14 mechanized brigades, 12 light infantry brigades and one airborne brigade. Also available aviation and artillery units. The ground forces include 10 special-purpose brigades with different functions.
The Iranian army is quite strong, with more than 1500 tanks several types. The most numerous (about 560 units) are machines of the T-55 family of Soviet, Chinese and own production. There are also 480 newer T-72s. The troops have obsolete American M47, M48 and M60 in significant quantities. There are 610 Soviet-developed infantry fighting vehicles. The fleet of armored personnel carriers (at least 640 units) includes both tracked vehicles of the M113 type or domestic counterparts, and wheeled BTR-50 and BTR-60 Soviet assemblies. There are at least 35-40 repair and evacuation and other auxiliary armored vehicles.
The artillery units are armed with up to three hundred self-propelled guns with guns of caliber up to 203 mm. There are combat vehicles of Soviet, American and Iranian production. The most numerous is the American M109 – there are one and a half hundred such machines.
More than 2 thousand towed artillery systems of various types in caliber up to 203 mm are stored in service. As in the case of self-propelled artillery, towed guns were purchased from the USSR / Russia, the United States or were made independently. There are self-propelled and towed rocket artillery in the amount of approximately 1500 units. The most numerous is the Chinese-made 63 type launcher – 700 units. Troops dispose of 3000 mortars in caliber from 81 to 120 mm.
Iran has the most powerful missile force in the Middle East. Some of Iran’s ballistic and cruise missiles can reach Israel, as well as parts of southeastern Europe.
The Islamic Republic of Iran Navy (IRIN) has the smallest structure and number of armed forces. The force’s original objective was to protect only a few ports that were connected to important sea routes. Iranian Navy manned 18 thousand people. The fleet of the army and the IRGC is armed with almost four hundred ships and boats of various types, with the bulk of this technology designed to protect the coast.