Combined group of rogue states is now at war against Ukraine

Combined group of rogue states is now at war against Ukraine

Combined group of rogue states is now at war against Ukraine.

Iran has supplied russia with about 400 ballistic missiles, including the Zolfaghar.

I've been hearing about Iranian Fateh-110 and Zolfaghar ballistic missile deliveries to Russia since October 2022, from different sources, but so far, not a single Iranian-made missile has been used on Ukraine. But that's "so far." Indeed, Tehran, using the example of Pyongyang, whose impunity in supplying munitions to russia has become exemplary, could go for deliveries.

And although the Reuters article is not an official confirmation of the fact itself, a little introductory information would not hurt.

In this regard, let us again clarify and specify what these missiles are and even more, where Iran got them in the first place.

Let's start with the Fateh-110, which, according to open sources, has a range of up to 300 kilometers and a warhead weighing up to 600 kilograms.

Fateh-110 was developed on the basis of unguided missile Zelzal-2, which in turn was created on the basis of Zelzal-1. And it is the Zelzal-1 that gives us an opportunity to imagine what the Fateh-110 is in its current form.

The fact is that the development of the Zelzal-1 got off the ground in sanctioned and missile-restricted Iran after the Islamic Republic received a shipment of Chinese CSS-8 missiles.

The Chinese CSS-8 missile, a.k.a. Project 8610 was a tactical surface-to-surface ballistic missile, was nothing more than a copy of the Soviet S-75, adapted for surface strikes.

A distinctive feature of these missiles was their launch at an inclined angle.

Zelzal-1 even repeated the characteristics of the Chinese missiles, namely, a range of up to 200 kilometers, and the mass of the warhead of about 500 kg.

But it was not only the CSS-8 that influenced the development of Iran's missile program.

The Zelzal-1 also absorbed the features of another Soviet missile, namely the 9K52 Luna-M tactical missile.

Thus, the Iranian missile program is a symbiosis of Soviet technologies with Chinese modification, but no matter how you look at this substance, it is a cocktail of 9K52 "Luna-M" and S-75, which in turn suggests that Iranian crafts may have the same vulnerabilities as the Soviet anachronisms. Even in spite of conventional modernization. But...

But it is worth remembering the Zolfaghar, which is a continuation of the Fateh-110 with strikingly different characteristics. For example, this missile, adopted into service in 2017, has a range of up to 700 kilometers. Real or not, it's hard to say, but the 2-fold increase is quite telling, indicating a... No, not a breakthrough, but some kind of third-party intervention, assistance to the missile program.

In addition, this missile has received not only an inertial guidance system, but also GPS. Given the sanctions, it's hard to say who would provide Iran with GPS services if... Unless we're talking about GLONASS. Let me remind you that Russia has recently started installing GLONASS units on the Shahed-136, which has increased their effective range and accuracy. Therefore, I would not be surprised if these blocks are also available on the Zolfaghar.

But the main problem of the Zolfaghar for our air defense systems will be that this missile has a 579 kg warhead that separates on approach to the target, which makes it difficult to detect, track and destroy. For example, Iskander missiles are easier to intercept in this respect.

Actually, Iranian missiles are something in between the Tochka-U and Iskander missiles, with their own specifics. It will take time to develop algorithms to counter our air defense systems against them, but it would be much better if our partners would hurry up to provide Ukraine with SAMs capable of effectively fighting ballistic targets, namely Patriot and SAMP/T.

In fact, a combined group of rogue states is now at war against Ukraine.

Alexander Kovalenko

Ukraine Front Lines


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