Note the advanced age of technicians depicted in the pictorial.
The very fact that the IRIAF and IRGCAF have been able to keep their ageing aircraft flying is a testament to the skills of Iranian engineers and technicians. As noted by Mark, most Iranian technicians (Hamofars) do indeed date back to the revolutionary and Jange Tahmili generation, however, a new generation is coming up under the tutelage of these experienced engineers and technicians. IRIAF pilots also now represent a newer and more aggressive generation who have been taught by the war time veterans.However,a country as large and rich as Iran urgently needs to upgrade its airforce fleet as these museum pieces will be no match for 5th generation fighters being deployed in the region, no matter how good Iranian pilots or engineers are. Iran needs at least 500 new frontline aircraft and a triad based nuclear deterrent.
Anon @ 1:36 said:…. Iran needs at least 500 new frontline aircraft and a triad based nuclear deterrent.Where are these 500 aircrafts and triad based nuclear deterrent going to come from? Let’s forget about the nuclear deterrent and concentrate on what can realistically be achieved in a short time frame to protect the country against a possible strike. I am not a military man but common sense tells me that the most practical option would be to invest heavily in developing home grown mid and long stealth missile technologies. There is no system in the world that can deal with a sustained swarms of missiles or low-tech speed boats. The Hezbollah’s swarms tactics managed to badly bruise and challenge the might of Israeli army.
@ reader. Your premise is sound. Iran has been investing in massive swarming and missile technology. However, the airforce does need to replace the ageing fleet as securing Iranian skies is not adequate currently. Even the "shah" was focused on a strong air-defence. A contract for 300 F-16's was canceled by the mullahs (a very short sighted view) and not even a major purchase from the then USSR (the Russians at the height of the cold war) were willing to sell SU-27 Flankers (India, Indonesia, Algeria etc) all signed on. In the post Soviet collapse Yeltsin cancelled a major deal (SU 27, MIG 31 and MIG 29SMT) deal under US/Zionist pressure.You are correct Iran does not have too many options left, perhaps the Chinese or domestic technology. The Chinese have proved to be not very relaible either but astute diplomacy and China's own security concerns vis a vis the US efforts to undermine it may make them more amenable to selling the J-11 (upgraded) SU-30/27 with better avionics and domestic engines). BTW, even the 55 or so F-14A that have been upgraded at Mehrabad and Shiraz are at the end of their airworthiness and are suffering metal fatigue. They should last till 2020 at the most. Iran needs to be actively seeking replacements from whatever source is available.In the meantime I have to agree with your assessment that a massive investment in missiles has to be maintained.
These relics don't stand a chance.
The assessments by everyone is reasonably correct. Regrettably Iran’s strategic isolation (they call it independence) means that Iran has no reliable source or friend to help 1) defend Iran when attacked and 2) provide up-to-date aircraft.The domestic industry aircraft development is a long term plan. Even Israel tried to develop domestic aircraft industry (Kfir) but abandoned for a variety of reasons. In short if Iran’s aircraft development takes the same path as its car industry then we are not going to see a fifth generation domestic fighter for a long time. Neither USA, Europe or Russia are willing to provide anything. Chinese themselves are years behind in technology so they are not going to provide Iran with anything competitive.So in the absence of foreign purchase and lack of in-house expertise, Iran should rely on simple and reliable deterrents in the form of missiles (offensive) and air defence (defensive). Nuclear weapons is a option that I believe Iran should pursue simply because of zero-sum game that having Nuclear Weapons add to the equation. I think Iranian military planners do understand this point and great emphasis has been given to both drills and training plus developing more accurate missiles and formation of air defence units.Unlike the general perception, the great strategic thread to Iran does not come from Israel or USA. It is fashionable to have a go at Zionists now for the same reason that our fathers and grand fathers saw Brits and Russians as the primary reason for their ills. It is far easier to throw than catch so to speak. Unfortunately we are good at blaming everyone else for our ills. The fact is that Iran has managed to alienate practically everyone. In short, what we label as independence has turned up to be International Isolation, lack of interaction, investment and technology transfer. If you look around Iran’s neighbours, there is only one country (ignoring Turkey’s transient overtures) that has been friendly and cordial with Iran and that is Christian Armenia. The rest has been troubled relationship.In short if there is not a fundamental change in Iranian outlook, I fail to see how Iran is going to get out of the current state of its isolation.
Actually the Zionist regime tried to develop the LAVI which has now resurfaced as the Chinese J-10. The Kfir was a French Mirage 5 based on the South African Cheetah configuration with canards. The Zionist entity had close nuclear and defence cooperation with the disgusting Apartheid regime and hence the Kfir.It is now Iran that has good relations with the new independent South Africa. The large number of GHN-45 155mm artillery pieces, both towed and SP guns in Iranian inventory (some captured from Saddam at Fao and Basra fronts)attest to this. Iran's artillery school at Isfahan has modified and upgraded these excellent guns with base bleed ammo giving them a greater punch.
You are all not following the News.Iran was isolated just because they were independent. Didnt you hear about the new 30 billion business deals with Turkey? They have good relations with Syria, improving relations with outher countries and at the end of the day the new revolutions will further improve relations between arab countries and iran!
What a dump. Good luck with those planes. They might make good target drones if Iran could afford orange paint.
Cyberwatch:what does the experience of the lastwars teach us ? Vietnam, Afghanistan,even Irak,the secret is not only the technology,it is the assymetric way of thinking,to to the unexpected.
Anonymous 6:35 PM. That's true.Anonymous 5:06 PM. These aeroplanes are not Iran's only fighters or, its only means of air defence. Why don't you make an effort to learn something first, before making a fool of yourself?
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