Iran has commenced extensive two-day war games in the central region of the country amidst escalating tensions in the Middle East due to the ongoing conflict between Hamas and Israel. The exercise, named ‘Eqtedar 1402’, started on Friday in the Nasrabad region of Isfahan province. According to Iranian media, the drill involves infantry, various military equipment, warplanes, drones, and electronic warfare capabilities.
Brigadier General Karim Cheshak, the spokesperson for the exercise, stated that the first day of the war games included operations by a fleet of approximately 200 helicopters. He also mentioned that the objectives of the exercise are to evaluate the combat readiness of Iran’s ground forces, review combat tactics, improve deterrence power against new threats, and develop stable security measures. The spokesperson did not disclose the exact number of personnel participating in the exercise but explained that it would consist of four stages.
The first stage focuses on transporting four brigades to the designated drill area, while the second stage involves reconnaissance operations. The third and fourth stages are dedicated to coastal defense scenarios and night-time airborne operations, respectively. Videos shared by local media show dozens of tanks in a desert landscape and helicopters preparing to take off from an airport.
The large-scale war games conducted by Iran occurred shortly after the Pentagon announced that US forces carried out airstrikes on military installations in eastern Syria that were allegedly being used by Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps. However, the US maintained that the attack was unrelated to the ongoing conflict between Hamas and Israel.
The armed group, Hamas, launched a surprise attack on Israel on October 7, resulting in numerous casualties on both sides. Iran, which has close ties with both Hamas and Lebanon-based Hezbollah, has consistently condemned Israel for what it deems as war crimes.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has emphasized that while the United States does not seek a conflict with Iran, it will respond swiftly and decisively if Iran or its proxies target US personnel anywhere. Tehran has stated that its armed forces would refrain from engaging in hostilities as long as Israel does not dare to attack Iran, its interests, or its nationals.
The war games conducted by Iran demonstrate the country’s efforts to enhance its deterrence power in the face of new threats. The exercises serve as a platform for evaluating the preparedness and combat capabilities of its ground forces, as well as reviewing and improving combat tactics. Moreover, these exercises contribute to strengthening national security and stability.
As tensions continue to rise in the Middle East, it remains crucial for all parties involved to exercise restraint and seek diplomatic solutions to prevent further escalation of conflict in the region. The international community should actively engage in dialogue and mediation efforts to promote peace and stability in the Middle East.