Iranian Air Force to stage large-scale war gamesJuly 16th, 2008 - 1:26 am ICT by IANS
Tehran, July 15 (RIA Novosti) Iran’s military will hold a major air exercise soon to demonstrate its capabilities, a top air force official said Tuesday. The war games, dubbed Protectors of Velayat Air, “will demonstrate our strength and will send the message to our enemies that if they contemplate an attack, they will meet a powerful blow,” Iran’s Air Force commander Ahmad Mighani said.
He said the air force was operating at full combat readiness and added that Iran had developed aircraft that were capable of evading radar detection, which “would increase the country’s air strength”.
Last week Iran successfully launched an upgraded Shahab-3 ballistic missile as part of the Great Prophet III military exercise in the Persian Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz, drawing a new wave of international criticism.
The Iranian missile tests came after the Israeli Air Force conducted military exercises involving over 100 fighters in early June. The exercises were widely seen as a ‘dress rehearsal’ for an attack on Iranian nuclear facilities.
The US has also not ruled out a military strike against Iran if the Islamic country refuses to halt its nuclear programme, which Western countries believe is a cover for a weapons programme. But Iran insists it needs the programme to produce electricity.
Iran has reacted to rumours of an imminent attack by Israel and/or the US by promising to deliver a “powerful blow” to any aggressor.
A senior military official said Saturday that Iran’s armed forces would launch devastating strikes against Israel and 32 American bases in the Middle East if they dared to attack the country.