Experts: Probability of attack on Iran from Caspian Sea is very low

Experts: Probability of attack on Iran from Caspian Sea is very low

Azerbaijan, Baku, August 25 /Trend, T.Konyayeva/

The probability of an attack on Iran from the Caspian Sea is very low. If military force is introduced against the Islamic Republic, it is able to respond to the attack in any direction, but the effectiveness of response raises doubts amongst experts.

"The likelihood that any military conflict will happen in Iran this year, not only from the Caspian Sea, but in general, is extremely small," Russian military expert Pavel Felgengauer told Trend by telephone from Moscow.

On Monday, a ceremony was conducted in Iran to open the assembly lines for producing two types of high-speed missile and torpedo boats of new generation - "Zulfagar" and "Seraj-1, which, as noted by the Iranian Defense Minister Ahmad Vahidi, was designed to improve the security of coastline of Iran and strengthen Iranian border from the Caspian Sea.

However, according to Felgengauer, over the next two years, the probability of a large war in the Middle East is high.

"Most likely, it will start around Iran, the main battleground will be the Gulf region, but it will cover other regions: Gaza Strip, Lebanon, Syria, he said. - In principle, any clashes in the north are not excluded, but rather all, they will not be there in general."

With regards to Iran's preparedness to repel an attack, Felgengauer believes that Iran will be defeated.

"Iran has a lot of troops, and they may even encourage people to take up a gun; they had quite lots of weapons, though they are outdated; they have medium-and short-range missiles, he said. - But in case of full-scale conflict, Iran has no chances: and its operation will fail, and the fleet will be quickly destroyed.

An American expert James Forest believes that Iran may be ready to react to an attack from any direction. However, their response to such an attack may not be as effective as they anticipate.

"Most forces that would potentially attack Iran have good information about Iranian equipment and defense capabilities," Forest, Professor of Criminal Justice and Criminology at the University of Massachusetts Lowell, wrote in an e-mail to Trend. "I would certainly hope there is nobody in the Iranian leadership who is underestimating the intelligence or attack capabilities of countries against which Iran has declared hostile intentions."

In early August, the Chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Mike Mullen said the Pentagon is considering the possibility of force to resolve the Iranian issue, provided that Tehran will continue to seek confrontation with the West.

In addition, in recent weeks, a series of media reports and statements by military experts were published, strongly indicating that either the Obama administration or the Israeli government, or others can prepare for an attack on Iran.

Last week, Iran's Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei made a warning to Washington about the threat to use military force against Iran, in which he described such threats of stupidity, and added that "if this happens, the confrontation with the Iranian people will extend far beyond the Middle East region."

An Iranian expert on Russia and Central Asia Bahram Amirahmadian also does not believe in the possibility of military action against Iran from the Caspian Sea.

"The heads of the Caspian countries have undertaken commitments, upon which they should not allow foreign military forces to be located in the Caspian Sea, Amirahmadian said by telephone from Tehran. - Given this, Iran does not expect danger emanating from this region."

But in soite of this fact, according to Amirahmadian, Iran's defensive capabilities on the shores of the Caspian Sea are not weaker compared with the southern borders.
"On the other hand, the Caspian Sea is an enclosed sea, it is impossible to conduct large-scale operations there such as those conducted in the Persian Gulf," said Amirahmadian.

He also noted Azerbaijan's defense strategy, under which it would not permit deployment of foreign military forces on its territories, and also pointed out that Iran's neighbor and friend, Russia, would not agree with the foreign presence in the region.

"But despite that, because of its geographical situation and the situation in the world, Iran is forced to constantly strengthen its defense power and develop technologies to ensure its safety in all directions," said Amirahmadian.

In 2005, under the Caspian Guard program, the U.S. provided $135 million to Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan. It was planned that the Pentagon will implement the program within six years.

The program included measures to improve security in the Caspian Sea region, in particular the construction of monitoring systems for air and sea space, the creation of rapid reaction forces and border controls, training of troops of participating countries, the provision of economic and political support to partners.

Moreover, in general, over the past 15 years, the total number of warships in the Caspian Sea has increased more than twice, and their combat power has reached a qualitatively new level, been increasing its coastal infrastructure.

V.Zhavoronkova, T. Jafarov contributed to the article.

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