UAVs as a primary lethal platform- Two events in Iran and Syria

Two events from recent days demonstrate once again how significant UAVs have become in the modern battlefield. This holds true whether they are in the hands of armies or in the hands of militias and paramilitary organizations.

The first event was a large-scale combined UAV exercise conducted by the Iranian Army (Artesh) on October 3rd and 4th.

During the exercise, UAV units of the ground, air, and naval forces’ honed various skills like attack, reconnaissance, and intelligence gathering.

One of the new capabilities demonstrated during the exercise was an aerial interception by a Karar UAV armed with an anti-aircraft “Sayyad” missile. The Kaman 19 electronic warfare UAV was also unveiled during the drill but without any details about its features.

Kaman 19 UAV

The evolution of the UAVs in recent decades has made them a primary weapon in modern warfare. It is inexpensive, easy to operate, difficult to identify and intercept, and capable of carrying out a wide range of missions. In the Middle East and Ukraine we see proof of this every day.

As we have shown in our earlier reports, Iran’s UAV capabilities have advanced significantly and steadily over the last 20 years, and as a result, they now possess a strong and formidable “UAV army.” Iran has also transferred UAVs and technical knowledge to Hamas and the PIJ in Gaza, as well as to Hezbollah, the Houthis, and Shi’ite militants in Iraq and Syria.

Kara UAV armed with Sayyad anti-aircraft missile

The Iranian advancement in the UAV field (some UAV’s reaching 2,000 km), along with their propagation by Iran to different proxies, pose a significant threat not only to Israel.

As we mentioned in our reports, these UAVs threaten significant parts of Europe and parts of the US and are already present in Russia and Venezuela.

The second event that highlights the UAVs threat took place yesterday (Oct 5th) in northern Syria. An attack was carried out by a suicide UAV during a graduation ceremony in the Homs military academy. As a result, over 89 people were killed and many others (possibly over 200) injured.

The UAV wreckage

The military academy is located at the northwest end of Homs, near the Alwar neighborhood. It is adjacent to the Signal College, the Armor College and the College of Technical Affairs to the west. The Syrian Minister of Defense was present at the ceremony but left immediately after it ended, about 20 minutes before the attack, while the graduates were posing for pictures with their families to mark the end of the course.

 The graduation ceremony minutes before the attack
Coffins of the attack victims

The attack was apparently carried out by the rebel forces operating in the Idlib enclave, which possess the ability to operate various types of UAVs. The Syrian army, in response, launched a heavy attack on the Idlib area.

Around noon on October 6th, a third event has taken place where UAVs were launched towards the city of Homs, but most of them have been intercepted.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Picture of Boaz Shapira

Boaz Shapira

Sign up for our Newsletter

Sign up to stay current on Israel’s border conflict.
Skip to content