As the Israel-Hamas ceasefire and discussions about the presidential elections in Iran began in late May, the IRGC unveiled several military weapons, including the Gaza Drone, the Quds Radar System, and the surface-to-air missile system called “December 30”, highlighting Iran’s priorities while the country is grappling with the Covid-19 pandemic.
The weapons unveiled, their range, as well as IRGC’s series of missile developments, especially since last year, draw a larger picture of a program that is underway within the Islamic Republic.
In introducing the Gaza Drone, Tasnim news agency said the drone was capable of carrying “13 bombs up to an operational radius of 2,000 kilometers and carrying 500 kilograms of intelligence and signal collection equipment.”
It appears that the “Gaza drone” is the previously named “Witness 149” drone, which Akbar Karimlu, the IRGC commander, had previously promised to unveil in May last year, a drone that has now taken a different name in light of the recent dispute between Israel and Hamas.
The IRGC has dropped the 1980’s “nuclear energy” trumpet and picked up the “missile industry” horn ever since the mid-1990s to the present. So much so that IRGC commanders even interpreted the recent presidential elections with “missile” literature, saying that “the value of every vote of the people is greater than a missile unto the heart of our enemy”
But in response to these remarks by the IRGC, less than 30% voter turnout in Iran’s 2021 presidential elections clearly demonstrated how important the regime’s missile program is to the Iranian people.
Iran’s and IRGC’s nuclear and missile programs thus far, have brought nothing but poverty, corruption, and sanctions to the Iranian people, with millions of people currently facing widespread blackouts, water disruptions, and food shortages.
The Islamic Republic of Iran’s priorities have been clearly displayed in recent years, and so have the priorities of its people.