Israeli military authorities have started mentioning Iranian IRGC General Amir Ali Hajizadeh as an Iranian in recent weeks.
Tehran’s expanding drone capabilities and its purported attacks on a number of ships with links to Israel have been blamed on the commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) Aerospace Force, most notably the Mercer Street tanker in the Gulf of Oman.
According to Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz, “Amir Ali Hajizadeh, head of the IRGC’s air force, is behind scores of terror assaults in the region, using [unmanned aerial vehicles] UAVs and missiles.”
Israeli security officials, experts, and observers have even suggested that Hajizadeh may be the “next Qassem Soleimani,” a Revolutionary Guard commander who influences Iranian policy and has the support of Iran’s supreme leader.
Hajizadeh is developing in prominence both at home and abroad, despite the fact that he has not yet attained the level of Soleimani, who was killed by the United States in a drone hit with the assistance of Mossad.
The IRGC general is also turning into a more deadly adversary for Iran’s foes as Iran and its allies use drones in military operations around the Middle East.
According to a military expert living in Iran, the Iranians and Americans have recently engaged in an asymmetrical conflict that is supported by two foundations.
The Aerospace Force is the first pillar. According to the expert, Khamenei has not fired Hajizadeh despite the incident involving the Ukrainian plane because of his division’s performance.
The Republican Guard’s elite foreign unit, the Quds Force, which was formerly notably headed by Soleimani, serves as the second pillar. However, both its influence and efficacy have decreased since Soleimani’s death.
“Hajizadeh is becoming a less charismatic Soleimani as a result of his accomplishment in the Aerospace Force. For security considerations, the analyst spoke to MEE on the condition of anonymity. “But we should pay attention to the fact that compared to Esmail Qaani, the new Quds Force commander, he is far more valuable,” the analyst said.