A response to a book review penned by Youssef Aboul-Enein, Andrew Bertrand and Dorothy Corley at SWJ
by Mark Pyruz
The following is a response to part 2 of a book review on Egyptian Field Marshal Abdul-Halim Abu Ghazalah's "Combat Tactics and Strategy of the Iran-Iraq War" put forward by Youssef Aboul-Enein, Andrew Bertrand and Dorothy Corley, recently published in three parts by Small Wars Journal. (See HERE, HERE and HERE.) This writer's response to Part 1 can be found HERE. Let us proceed with Part 2 (reviewers passages in blue, this writer's responses in black and excerpts taken from ACIG sources in green):
"Phase I (August to November 1980), D+1: One Iraqi infantry division crossed into the Iranian border and secured the line of Zeinquwa, al-Sukra, and Bir Ali in Iran’s Bakhlian Region."
This writer is unfamiliar with these locations given these specific spellings. It's possible CDR Aboul-Enein et al are referring to Iraq Army (IrA) 4th Infantry Division's attack and capture of Penjwin after two days of fierce fighting against Iranian border troops, gendarmerie, and the local Pasdaran, Basij, and Mostafazin units (source: ACIG.org).
"D+2 (17 August 1980): Iraqi air forces pounded the cities of Khoramshahr, Qasr-Shireen, Mehran, Ahvaz, Tehran, Tabriz, Isfahan, and Shiraz. However, the air strikes were not successful, as the Iraqis spread their air forces too thin, and the air raids were not coordinated with the advancing Iraqi ground units. Although the air raids mirrored the 1967 Six-Day War in concept, they utterly failed in competence, equipment, and capability."
"...while the Iraqis attempted to replicate the Israeli 1967 combined air and land strike, they miscalculated distances, resilience of Iranians, and the inability of Iraq to sustain air and ground forces as well as a failure to concentrate Iraqi air and ground forces at decisive Iranians points."
CDR Aboul-Enein et al appear to have their date wrong. The formal opening of the IrAF air war took place on 22 September 1980, with the IrAF attacking ten airfields in Iran.
Per "I Persian Gulf War: Iraqi Invasion of Iran, September 1980" by Tom Cooper and Farzad Bishop:
The [IrAF] air offensive – flown by heavily armed aircraft but lacking the needed capabilities, and pilots lacking proper training – turned into a complete failure. Not even another try on the following morning could preclude the Islamic Republic of Iran Air Force (IRIAF) responding in full power. For instance, only four hours after the first Iraqi attack, four Iranian F-4 Phantoms bombed Rashid AB in southern Baghdad, and – utilizing IIAF-era contingency plans – on the morning of September 23, no less than 140 Iranian F-4D/E Phantoms, F-5E/Fs and F-14As – responded with a full-fledged aerial onslaught against Iraq. Thus a relative “aerial siege” of Iraq was initiated, which was to last for almost a week, during which the IRIAF continued to put large formations of fighter-bombers over Iraq each morning, systematically destroying Iraqi oil-production, reducing Iraq air war fighting capabilities, and forcing the repositioning of large parts of the IrAF to airfields in Western Iraq. Equipped with ECM pods, BL.755 CBUs, and Mk.80 series of bombs, and using specially reconnoitered ingress corridors, the Iranians had little difficulty in flying nearly unmolested deep into Iraq. If the IrAF managed to intercept any formation, its fighters were usually detected in time, and shot down in large numbers. For example, on September 25, no less than five MiG-21s and MiG-23s were shot down in a single air combat near Baghdad, in exchange for two damaged Phantoms.
For the IrAF the invasion of Iran came at the time it was in the middle of receiving a total of 240 new aircraft and helicopters from the USSR, as well as expecting the arrival of the first 16 Dassault Mirage F.1EQs from France. In reaction to the Iraqi invasion, and expecting the war to last only a few weeks, both the Soviets and the French stopped delivery of additional aircraft to Iraq, and re-started it only in December 1980. Consequently, the IrAF had to fight the first few months of the war with obsolete or poorely equipped types. It was still heavily dependable on the MiG-21, which was no match for either the Iranian F-4 Phantom or F-14 Tomcat. Iraqis hoped that their MiG-23s could even the match to a degree, but the type suffered heavy losses: betwen 13 September 1980 and 31 January 1981 no less but 40 were shot down. Consequently, it was the Su-20/22 series that silently developed into the Iraqi "battle wagon": although never sufficiently well-equipped the Sukhois were gradually upgraded and became the first Iraqi fighters equipped with stand-off precision-guided ammunition, in turn bearing the brunt of the attrition war against Iran.
"The former Egyptian Defense Minister believed that the Iraqis suffered from very poor planning and a profound lack of understanding of the terrain. They achieved the 800-kilometer line 20-60 kilometers inside Iran with no concentrated effort towards achieving a breakthrough. The Iraqis failed attempt to capture Abadan was attributed to a lack of coordination between commander, infantry and artillery. The Iraqi General Staff, knowing Abadan was a port town, did not anticipate naval reinforcements, and did not consider implementing a blockade with their coastal patrol craft."
The Iraqis operated on a heavily modified and updated British plan for intervention into Iran, first envisioned in the 1950s. At this stage in the conflict, Iraqi ground ops were heavily influenced by past British examples. Referring to the successful resistance at Abadan, the field marshal apparently understates the determination of IRGC defenders, which greatly surprised the Iraqis. As for utilizing Iraqi coastal patrol craft, they no doubt would have suffered the same level of destruction sustained a few months later during Operation Morvarid.
"The Iraqi obsession with capturing cities, towns and villages led to massive casualties due to urban fighting. Iraqi armed forces were unable to exploit breakthrough operations following the main effort because of their lack of knowledge and initiative regarding the terrain. Maneuver warfare was a concept alien in practice to the Iraqi General Staff, who employed tanks in mountainous terrain as immobile artillery pieces."
To a degree, the Iraqis did engage in exploitation. "Tank-raids" deep over the open terrain between Iranian cities several times surprised the Iranian High Command, causing shock and chaos between scattered Iranian units that were badly outnumbered, and overstretched in an attempt to defend too large parts of the frontlines. (Source ACIG.org)
"Iraq enjoyed superiority in aircraft, but no thought was given to use this arm to isolate Iranian logistical lines, or to prevent the reinforcement of Abadan. The focus among Iraqi air planners was to replicate the successful air raids of the 1967 Six-Day War, and focus on airfields, aircraft and air defenses, as the Israelis had done against Egypt, Syria and Jordan with overwhelming success. However, the raids were not nearly as successful as they were in 1967. As the war progressed, Iran would begin to successfully mount deep air strikes into Iraq when they could garner the ability to sortie aircraft."
This is plain wrong. Iraq did not enjoy superiority in aircraft during this phase of the conflict. It's incredible the field marshal is so ignorant of such details for this period of the air war, as it is known a small number of Egyptian pilots actually participated in combat within the IrAF (one is known to have been shot down in a MiG-21). The IrAF was savaged by the IRIAF, and the IrA bore the brunt of IRIAF interdiction missions, which served to undermine an already tenuous IrA logistical effort.
"After the initial attack Iraqi units became complacent and failed to prepare for the possibility of an Iranian counter-attack. Some Iraqi units stopped after the initial attack and did not set up in terrain advantageous to repelling a counter-attack. Soldiers did not question NCOs, and NCOs did not question junior officers, and junior officers did not question senior officers. Had someone simply put forth the idea of preparing for a counter-attack, the Iraqi units would have been far better prepared and able to defend themselves more efficiently."
It is here where this writer has a hard time understanding how the Egyptian field marshal could expect so much from the inexperienced Iraqi army, where for two straight wars similar deficiencies in the Egyptian army had led to the utter routing of its forces in Sinai, and a third war had seen the bulk of its forces surrounded and invested, under siege and without access to its supply line, all in a span of days or a little over a week.
"The initial Iranian response to Iraq’s offensive attack was slow and ineffective. One early tactical blunder was the use of Shiite Peoples Brigades, a formation of irregular mass infantry formations like the Basij. They were uncontrollable in battle and their inexperience and tendency to panic while attached to more disciplined Iraqi formations caused the collapse and surrender of several border cities to Iraq. The reason why Iraqi forces did not penetrate deeper into Iranian territory was due to Iraqi combat idiosyncrasies and the dispatch of IRCG units, who, although they had no combat experience, were better armed and possessed sheer revolutionary and Islamist radical zeal. Iranians finally deployed American made cobra gunships to effectively halt Iraqi advances. Only days before the battle, the Iranians had placed the gunships in storage due to a lack of maintenance and the requisite technical knowledge to keep them operational, but in desperation were able to field the cobra gunships. This first phase of the war ended in November 1980 in a static defense reminiscent of World War I trench warfare, but with late 20th century weaponry."
Again, the field marshal's air war narrative for this period of the conflict is deeply flawed. Also, at this point, the IRGC were not as well equipped as the Islamic Republic of Iran Army (IRIA). That the IRGC were highly motivated volunteers is correct.
"Phase II (November 1980 to late August 1981)"
For some reason the effective destruction of the Iraqi Navy by the IRIAF and Islamic Republic of Iran Navy (IRIN) is left unmentioned.
"Saddam Hussein and his General Staff wanted Khomeini to seek a peace treaty while they still retained Iranian territory. The Iraqis failed to understand the depth of Islamist Revolutionary zeal, and the unifying power Iraq’s invasion would have on the Iranian public. The Iraqis escalated, firing SCUD-missiles on the cities of Dezful and Ahvaz, as terror weapons to bring the war to the Iranian public. The Iraqis lost control of Khoramshahr, and the 38th Infantry Division was deployed to recapture the city and to break the siege of Abadan. The Iraqis dug deep into a defensive holding position during the Abadan operation without attempting to exploit Iranian weaknesses. However, the Iraqis did not pay attention to the sea, and it made no sense to seal the city without blockading the seaward approach which provided the Iranians a method of keeping their defensive positions re-supplied."
Actually, it was Saddam Hussein that sought a ceasefire multiple times during this period of the conflict and beyond. As said previously, the IRGC were a highly motivated force that while under-equipped fought well. As with his deeply flawed understanding of the air war, the field marshal appears equally in the dark regarding the naval war. Operation Morvarid which took place during this period underscored Iraq Navy weaknesses when pitted against IRIN and IRAF.
"The style of tactics used in the first year of the war included the staging of division level formations in Susangard and Ahvaz in mid-January 1981. Tactics also consisted of commanders pointing battalions towards the captured Iranian cities and the Iraqi border, and ordering them to simply advance. It is worth noting that such tactics were not seen since the carnage of World War I, where troops marched into the jaws of machine gun fire. Kenneth M. Pollack, in his volume titled Arabs at War, indicates that the success of these “mobilization battalions” during a battle close to the city of Qasr-e Shirin “convinced the mullahs in Tehran that large-scale infantry assaults relying on the Islamic fervor of the Revolutionary guards and the Basij were their ace in the hole”."
Actually there are many examples of such tactics being employed after WWI, the best known examples being occasions of use by the Soviet Army and Red Army. As for "convinced the mullahs" of an "ace in the hole", there were military matters of practicality that will be entailed later.
"Abu Ghazalah notes in his book that he was astonished to learn that the Iraqis did not regroup their armored divisions for an offensive, and instead simply entrenched and reacted to Iranian attacks. The Iraqis failed to comprehend and apply the lessons learned following each Iranian attack, while the Iranians began to gradually close their learning curve in combat tactics, giving them a piecemeal advantage. Iraqi artillery was spread across the 800-kilometer front instead of being redeployed and concentrated in sectors where it could have supported armored and infantry assaults."
Apparently, the field marshal is unaware of the true state of the IrA at this stage of the conflict. The first Battle of Khorramshar proved to be a "Kursk" moment for the Iraqi Army, lasting for much of the war.
Per "I Persian Gulf War: Iraqi Invasion of Iran, September 1980" by Tom Cooper and Farzad Bishop:
The battle of Khorramshahr lasted for 34 days, and saw an immense investment of Iraqi forces, far beyond what Iraqi war plans envisaged. In turn, this battle enabled the Iranians to stablize front-lines at Dezful, Ahwaz and Susangerd, and move reinforcements to Khuzestan: by the time Khorramshahr fell, the Iraqi Army units deployed to capture this province were no longer facing just the Iranian 92nd AD, but also the 16th AD, 21th ID, and 77th ID. The City of Khoramshahr was eventually captured by the Iraqis after exceptionally bitter fighting for every house, floor and room - where Iranian air power could not play a dominant role or be effective - but during which the Iraqis suffered such heavy losses that they never attempted anything similar with any other Iranian city again. By the time Khoramshahr fell, Iraqi Army strategic reserves were drained down to a point where they were incapable of re-starting any offensive operations for years to come.
"Phase III (August 1981 to March 1982): The Iranians go on the offensive. There were limited Iranian attacks in the Northern Sector prior to the start of phase III that penetrated the Nusood area and reached a depth of approximately 6 kilometers; the Iraqis regained the territory two days later on 4 January 1981. These limited attacks were conducted in preparation for a massive attack planned for November 1981, with one armor division, one infantry division, and 10,000 IRGC forces in the Soma Region (Central Sector). The Iranians succeeded in re-occupying the city of Bostan and its surrounding villages during the offensive. The Iraqis responded by repelling the attack with the forces on hand; there was no thought to utilizing reserves despite their availability in Baghdad and near the Jordanian-Syrian border."
This is where regional positioning favored Iran, as did the relative legitimacy of its regime. Iraq was forced to maintain forces away from the Iran front, in regions bordering hostile relations, and where a strong force was necessary to check any potential popular uprising. Iran, on the other hand, could concentrate its forces in the west against Iraq, with little problems on its other borders and a very popular mandate to repel the invader.
"Iranian air forces were only capable of performing 30-40 sorties per day, a negligible amount given the size of Iraq. Iran stiffened its anti-air (AA) defenses, and purchased much-needed SAM-missile batteries from Syria. The newly acquired AA assets were used in the capital, Tehran. In the first two years of the war, Iran acquired AA assets from the Soviets, North Korea and Libya. However, the AA defenses, such as Libyan SAM-6 units, did not equal the sophisticated early air war system possessed by the Iraqis and supplied by the French."
Again, a flawed rendering of the air war at this stage of the conflict.
Per "Fire in the Hills: Iranian and Iraqi Battles of Autumn 1982" by Tom Cooper & Farzad Bishop:
By January 1981, the Iranians already felt capable of starting a counteroffensive, but their first large offensive, Operation Howeizeh, initiated on January 5, ended in failure and caused considerable losses in equipment of the regular forces. As a result, for the next few years the IRIAF and the Army were not to intensively join into offensive operations, except in support of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC). Nevertheless, this support often proved indispensable. For example, during the retaking of Khoramshahr, in September 1982, and the final expulsion of the Iraqis from Iran, in the Spring of 1982, the IRIAF – but also the Iranian Army Aviation (IRIAA) – destroyed huge amounts of Iraqi equipment. The IrAF, on the other hand, after a short breathing space during the spring and summer of 1981, was nevertheless at the end of its strength, by late 1982. Only huge urgent deals with China – facilitated with Egyptian and Saudi help – as well as renewed deliveries of replacement equipment from the USSR (stopped earlier in protest to the Iraqi invasion of Iran), saved it from annihilation.
"While the Iranians analyzed, adjusted and re-positioned their forces, the Iraqi General Staff kept their initial front line units deployed and gave little thought to fatigue. Iraq did nothing to refresh front-line units or re-organize defenses during the first several months of phase III, which was a period of high attrition. It never set up layered kill zones or defenses in depth, and reserves were never decisively deployed to counter Iranian assaults. Iraqi armor was used as immobile artillery. This sort of tactical error negated the advantage Iraq enjoyed in tanks. Unlike the Iranians, who began to concentrate their artillery, the Iraqis still spread their artillery sporadically along the 800-kilometer front. Had the Iraqis concentrated their artillery, it could have helped to prevent the Iranian recapture of Abadan. Iran was able to adapt and evolve throughout the war, giving them the advantage over a complacent Iraqi strategy."
"The year 1982 saw the peak of Iranian human wave assaults. Iranian success in mass assaults at night led to a May 1982 Iraqi withdrawal from Khoramshah [sic] after the Iranians had successfully retaken Mehran, Susangard, Somar and Qasr Shireen."
This writer realizes this is a very general overview being put forth by the reviewers, but to limit the successful Iranian liberation of Khorramshar to a single line of a few words appears far too trite. After all, this is supposed to be a study on Iran's military.
It is also the opinion of this writer that the field marshal is overestimating combat ratings of IrA units and their potential for the tactical initiative during this period of the conflict. Many of Iraq's best troops were by now casualties, and the level of training had been severely reduced.
Per "Fire in the Hills: Iranian and Iraqi Battles of Autumn 1982" by Tom Cooper & Farzad Bishop:
After 18 months of fighting, in 1982, the Iranian ground forces finally managed to organize themselves sufficiently to expel Iraqi forces from Iranian soil. In a series of offensives undertaken between March and June, the Iranians out-maneuvered and overwhelmed the main contingent of the Iraqi Army inside the Iranian province of Khuzestan, which was completely liberated in the process. During this fighting, the Iraqi military was truly battered: its strength fell from 210,000 to 150,000 troops; over 20,000 Iraqi soldiers were killed and almost 30,000 captured; two out of four active armored divisions and at least three mechanized divisions were decimated to less than a brigade strength, and the Iranians captured over 450 tanks and APCs .The IrAF was left in no better shape, and after losing up to 55 aircraft since early December 1981, could count with barely 100 intact fighter-bombers and interceptors: a defector who flew his MiG-21 to Syria, in June 1982, revealed that the IrAF had only three squadrons of fighter-bombers left capable of mounting offensive operations into Iran at the time. The Iraqi Army Air Corps (IrAAC) was perhaps in a better state and could still operate more than 70 helicopters. The fighting in 1982 also took its tolls of the Iranian forces, but losses were not as heavy as those suffered by the Iraqis and despite the hard-felt lack of heavy weapons and empty ammunition depots spirits were high.
"Operation Ramadan commenced on the evening of 13 July 1982, at 2215 hours. The Iranians deployed an initial strike force of one infantry division, two armored divisions and 30,000 IRGC troops who fought until 1000 the next day and advanced 15 kilometers into Basra’s suburbs. Iraqis countered with an infantry division, reinforced by an armored brigade, made more potent with the deployment of attack helicopters and pushed the Iranian force back 10 kilometers, leaving the net territorial gain for the Iranians at only 5 kilometers, amidst tremendous casualties."
"Abu Ghazalah notes that the Iranian offensives on Basra were merely uncoordinated wave assaults with IRGC, who either walked or were driven to the front for slaughter."
The reviewers offer too simple a narrative for the Iranian side.
Per "Fire in the Hills: Iranian and Iraqi Battles of Autumn 1982" by Tom Cooper & Farzad Bishop:
The Iranians supposed wrongly that they would hit one of the weak points in the enemy defenses whilst Iraqi military was still in turmoil after recent defeats, but they lacked proper intelligence. It was completely unknown to them that the Iraqis had learned about the preparations for RAMADHAN, and had reinforced the defenses of Basrah by additional units pulled back from the central and northern front sectors. As a result, the under-trained Pasdaran and Basij forces attacked some of the heaviest fortified Iraqi positions in the Zeid (Fish Lake) and Shalamcheh areas, and after a week of fighting were stopped in a hail of Iraqi defensive fire and flanking maneuvers. Even Iranian Chieftain MBTs and BMP-1 APCs of the 16th and 92nd Armored Division could not change the outcome.
During this offensive, the IRGC for the first time deployed some of its armor, mainly T-55 MBTs and Type 63/531 APCs of the recently-established 30th IRGC Armored Division, all of which had been captured from the Iraqis during the previous engagement, for the first time were being grouped as independent units. Iranian armored units were supported by the 21st and 77th Infantry Divisions, 58th Commando and 23rd Special Forces Brigades,22nd and 33rd Artillery Groups, as well as the 1st, 3rd, 5th and 7th Infantry Divisions IRGC. The Islamic Republic of Iran Army Aviation (IRIAA) also deployed a sizable helicopter division, including 34 Bell AH-1J/T Cobras, and a number of Bell 204s, Bell 206s, Bell 214s,and Boeing CH-47 Chinooks in support role.But the Iraqis instructed also by a team of East German advisors now started operating their Mil Mi-25 Hind and Aérospatiale SA.342L Gazelle attack helicopters in “hunter/killer” teams, which proved especially effective. The tactics used by the IrAAC hunter/killer teams were simple but highly effective, as it put the best capabilities of both helicopter types to advantage: the Mi-25s would go in first and roll over the Iranian positions firing 57 mm unguided rockets, trying to suppress the anti-aircraft positions. The Gazelles would follow, using the confusion to fire their HOT ATGMs) against singled-out Iranian tanks.
"The Iranians devised Operation Muslim ibn Aqeel as a result of Iran’s bloody experience during Operation Blessed Ramadan. Abu Ghazalah writes with great outrage that the Iraqis allowed the Iranians to regroup and conduct preparations for what was obviously another offensive without so much as disrupting them with air, armor or even artillery. Operation Muslim ibn Aqeel commenced on 1 October 1982, to occupy strategic hills that would cut off Basra’s road to Abadan. A force of one armored and one infantry division was assembled and reinforced with 20,000 IRGC skirmishers. The attack began at 0100, using Samar as a base and attacking the Iraqi village of Mandlee. This simple assault became an ebb and flow of Iranian attack and Iraqi counter-attack, employing the same tactics repeatedly as continued attrition decreased the number of forces available for each subsequent attack. Incredibly the Iraqis never learned the important lessons of denying the ability for the Iranians to regroup, and the Iranians never learned that the frontal assault was no longer effective."
Another oversimplification of the battle, particularly from the Iranian side.
Per "Fire in the Hills: Iranian and Iraqi Battles of Autumn 1982" by Tom Cooper and Farzad Bishop:
The MUSLIM-IBN-AQIL offensive was launched on the evening of 1 October 1982, with small IRGC units in high spirits attacking Iraqi positions high on the hills, followed by mechanized Army units in the morning. Shortly after the dawn, the F-5Es from Omidiyeh TFB.5 and F-4Es from Hamedan/Nojeh TFB.3 flew their first strikes, hitting the nearby Iraqi logistical centres. On the ground, there was a lack of co-ordination between the IRIAS and the IRGC units and so the battle soon developed into a bloody struggle for every hill. The Iranian advance was very slow, and by 4 October they still had not reached Mandali. On the contrary, the Iraqis counterattacked towards Sumar, supported by artillery and helicopter gunships. That was the start of a massive air-land battle.
According to the original plan for MUSLIM-IBN-AQIL, the 31st and 33rd TFS’s were to support the operation by flying nine to 12 strike sorties per day, with the 51st and 53rd TFS’s following with a similar number of close air support sorties. This was clearly not enough, so the IRIAA Cobras did their best by flying numerous daily combat missions per airframe and the crew.
The IrAF responded by sending more and more fighter-bombers as it deployed additional units at airfields near the front. But, the IRIAF then deployed one MIM-23 HAWK SAM site to cover the battlefield near Mandali, which became operational on the morning of 5 October, downing one MiG-23BN. In the middle of persistent quarrels between the IRIA and the IRGC, on the evening of the same day the Iranians started the next phase of their operation, this time better combining their infantry and armour. In the event, they were stopped on the hill overlooking Mandali, some two or three kilometres outside the city. Some outskirts of Mandali were held only very briefly, as in the morning the Basij unit was hit by Army artillery’s friendly fire after it started an attack almost two hours too early.
The Iraqis deployed their special forces brigade of the Republican Guards, trained for combat in urban areas and heavily supported by Mi-25 and SA.342 “hunter/killer” teams. By 7 October, the Iranians had lost their positions overlooking Mandali; but, they held off the other Iraqi counterattacks and also claimed seven Iraqi fighter-bombers as shot down, in addition to liberating 150 km2 of their own soil. Subsequently, the IRIAF resorted to counter attacks against the local Iraqi airfields at Subakhu, Baqubah, and Sheikh Jassem, forcing the IrAF to temporarily disperse its fighters concentrated there.
For some reason, the reviewers have neglected to mention Operation Moharram.
End of Part 2
If it wasn't for the IIAF that terrorist theocracy wouldn't have survived in 1980.
Wonder where that Arabian boy is?
Anon June 4, 2012 10:12 AM, why do you have so much hatred in you??? You're always the first to post on any topic and you somehow end up twisting every topic in "mullah", "theocracy", etc, etc..
Seriously, if you have nothing better say, don't come here spewing your hatred..This blog once has a vibrant readership and commentators until the likes of you appeared..Grow up!!!
Anon 2:58 PM
I have no hatred towards Iran except the people that have ruined our country namely the mullahs and their fanatical supporters.
I don't like people who lie about the situation in Iran and pretend that everything is rosy and 99.9% of people support the theocracy.
The facts are that only about 6% of the population support the regime(through terror and force of arms) and that is a over optimistic assumption.
You people have an agenda to lie to the Iranian people and leave them in doubt as regards the situation in Iran.
I have been on this blog for a long time and what you say is nonsense and unfounded because as time goes by people move on.But to have a blog full of yes men towards the Islamic regime is just not on.If anybody doesn't like what I say and can't challenge me with the FACTS then that's their problem.
Iran doesn't need Yes men anymore.
I remember being in Ahwaz two months into the war the war with reports of iraqi tanks approaching. Within days we could finally see an iranian tank decision entering the city. At the time we were told that it was from Mashhad. What division was that and did it engage the Iraqis on the outskirts of Ahwaz?
Anon 2:58 AM......What is it to you if Anon 10:12 AM or any other Anons express their views.We are not living in the IRI you know so chill.
At end of the long conflict Iraq emerged as the victor, purely on military grounds.
Their final campagin, initiated on 17 April 1988, named Tawakalna Ala Allah (In God We Trust), which aimed at liberating Al-faw, Fish Lake, Schalamcheh, Majnoon Island, and Al-Hawizeh marsh - the Iraqi forces outnumbered the Iranians 50:1.
The Iranian army disintegrated swiftly in all the areas where they had occupied.
Mechanized and Armored divisions of the Republican Guard continued their counter offensive, and even penetrated into Iranian territory, just as they had done on 22 September 1980. Ironically, had they chosen to push their advance then cities which had put up stiff resistance at the outset of the war, would now have fallen much easier, even Ahvaz were at considerable risk of being captured, as there was almost nothing that stood in their way.
Only international pressure on Saddam presuaded him to order a organized withdrawal back to the International boundary.
Would you believe it that the IRI has said there is a far few Mosques in Iran and require another 30 thousand more! LOL
And this when school kids haven't a proper school building to go too.As well as giving Billions of dollars away to terrorists and poor countries like Syria and Lebanon.LOL
At Anon 9:02 AM:
Hey If you really preach freedom of speech then practice it too. If one wants to express his opposition to another comment then so be it.
Anon 6:01 PM......And this coming from a person that supports a regime that kills anyone that breaths the wrong way.
Iraq or better said The Crazy Saddam invaded Iran in the hope of annexing Khuzestan from Iran and incorporating it into greater Iraq under the name of "Arabestan"; where 10 to 15% of the entire world’s sweet crude oil reserves are deposited.
In that goal Saddam Failed, As a matter of fact Saddam failed in all of his major plans. AS such he Lost that war. Also Iran wanted Saddam out of the picture and although it took many years, we all know at the end what happened to the Crazy Man.
At Annon 1:46 PM:
That is being dishonest and hypocrite. Freedom of speech does not mean just what you like should be discussed. And NO,If I speak of free and civilized dialogue that does mean I am for killing and hate, quite to the contrary...
Anon 10:52 AM
"That is being dishonest and hypocrite."
@You should know the meaning of those words since the regime you support practices them.
"Freedom of speech does not mean just what you like should be discussed."
@What would you suggest then,that we accept rule by the clergy and accept the crap that they are dishing us?
There are no discussions with people that accept veleyat-e-fagih.
"And NO,I speak of a free and civilized dialogue that does not mean that I am for killing and hate,quit the contrary..."
@But the reality of the situation is that the government you support believes in those very things,killing and hate.
Any civilized dialogue with people that accept veleyat-e-fagih and try to impose their rigid views about religion,politics and society is impossible.
That's why you have basij on the streets of our country because they impose their will against the peoples will.
Annon at 12:39 PM:
So, If I say all should have the same right in this forum to express then I am for IRI???!! Wow, what a logic!! you have a way to twist words. Just standing for the principle of Freedom does not mean and equate I am for any government, including any dictatorship. Your argument is to make sure anyone with a different opinion must support theocracy. That is dishonest. You can not even for a minute accept that One can be against Theocracy but for the principles of freedom of speech, which means all sides have the right to express their opinions.
You can not ask for freedom but at the same time act as to deny it from your opposition; That is hypocrisy!
This is a problem in most cultures including Iranian; that is accepting the right of any opposition to express, speak, assemble, and take part in any form of political forum. Once any nation or majority can accept these principles then they can live free and form free governments elected by the people.
Anon 4:29 PM
I'm not a magician. So tell me what is your political affiliation,if any?
Give me a small idea in what your solutions are to save Iran from this mess.
You don't need to write an essay,just a few words.You have answered me positively in your last paragraph.
On the second month of the war, we were told that Iraqi tanks were advancing on Ahwaz; at the same time we saw, for the first time an Iranian armored division entering the city. We were told it was from Mashhad.
Do you know what division that was, and if it actually played a role in stopping the advance of the Iraqi tanks?
Ps. The situation in those days was so desperate that the government was issuing old weapons, like Brno guns, to old veterans in cities and villages in khuzestan, so that they can be the last line of defense without needing any training.
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