Recently, Dr. Elijah J. Magnier, a Belgian political, crime, terrorism, and conflict analyst and veteran reporter with more than 35 years of experience in the Middle East and North Africa region ( MENA). citing his sources in Tehran as saying that, in a newly signed secret deal, Iran sold about 1,000 attack and reconnaissance UAVs to Russia.
Although the source did not specify what type of UAV Russia purchased, Magnier said it was most likely the Shahed-129, which can stay in the air for more than a day and act as both a weapon. Attack and reconnaissance equipment for artillery and missile systems.
The Shahed-129 UAV, capable of continuously maneuvering at an altitude of up to 7 km, is not afraid of the threat of Stingers man-portable missiles and at the same time, controls an area within a radius of up to 500 km.
Especially, the Shahed-129 UAV can use Sadid-345 video-guided weapons, with a weight of 34 kg, capable of destroying enemy personnel and light armored vehicles.
Last month, US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan revealed that a Russian military delegation a few months ago had visited Kashan airport (Iran) at least twice to survey drones capable of attacks. which Moscow wants to buy for use in the military campaign in Ukraine.
According to Magnier, Tehran has delivered a number of Shahed-129 UAVs and simulators for Russian officers to familiarize themselves with. Western analysts believe that 40 days is enough for a Russian soldier to effectively control the Shahed-129 UAV.
Currently, Russia still has the upper hand in the air, but mainly thanks to reconnaissance drones and fighter aircraft. If Elijah Magnier’s source is true, then Russia will have an attack drone array in a record short time, greatly increasing the ability to attack the rear of Ukraine.
Recently, US intelligence sources said that the Russian military received 46 advanced Iranian UAVs and most likely the Shahed-129 UAV was used for testing during the conflict in Ukraine.
British foreign intelligence agency MI-6, based on their sources, said that Tehran will bring 300 most modern UAVs to Moscow as soon as possible; will likely include 2 models, Shahed-191 and Shahed-129.
In particular, MI-6 informed the office of the President and the General Staff of Ukraine that the Russian Ministry of Defense is training all units, on drone attacks in groups or in combination with combat aircrafts.
On the front lines, Russia has the advantage of artillery fire, but due to the low reconnaissance range and short air-time of existing reconnaissance UAVs, and the limited range of artillery, it is not enough to help Russia. prevent the continuous flow of Ukrainian weapons and manpower behind the front.
Therefore, the goal of the purchase of Russian UAVs, is to initiate attacks regardless of day and night, along the second and third lines of the front, against fire systems and gathering points. armed forces of Ukraine, save expensive cruise missiles.
Earlier this month, the Breaking Defense news site commented that it was the US supplying Ukraine with the M142 HIMARS High Mobility Rocket System with long range and high maneuverability that prompted Moscow to sign it. UAV purchase contract with Tehran.
Over the past two months, the Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU) have used HIMARS quite effectively to hit targets deep in the Russian-occupied territories, cut off Moscow’s supply lines, and make Russia’s advance Russia slowed down significantly on all fronts.
According to the military, although Russia also has many types of reconnaissance and attack UAVs, the number is limited. Tehran’s supply of a large number of UAVs helps Moscow to replenish an important weapons system that has suffered heavy losses in the past six months of conflict.
Moreover, being able to receive up to 1000 reconnaissance-attack UAVs from Tehran can give Moscow peace of mind to use a large number of drones to seize control of Ukraine’s airspace, in order to prioritize the destruction of Ukraine’s airspace. destroy the US HIMARS complexes.
According to independent military analysts, the Russian military, if enough UAV Shahed-129, the military of this country will use this weapon to focus on hunting and destroying all the HIMARS launchers in Ukraine, opening a war. genocide” against the US advanced artillery complex.
To destroy these highly mobile missile launchers, Russia needs a large number of attack UAVs lurking in Ukrainian airspace 24 hours a day, day and night, in all weather conditions and ready automatically. attack at any time.
The loss of the HIMARS systems will deprive Kiev of a weapon capable of high precision strikes, destroying the AFU’s small artillery potential in the Donbass and southern Ukraine. If HIMARS is lost, the Ukrainian Army will face many difficulties.
Worse, when the damage is obvious and intolerable, the White House and Pentagon will be forced to stop supplying these launchers, both to minimize reputational damage and to not lose all systems. remaining artillery system of the US Army.