Thursday, June 10, 2021

Russia: To furnish Iran with a Military satellite.

(Moscow)  Duty rumour has it Russia is preparing to supply Iran with an advanced satellite system that will give Tehran an unprecedented ability to track potential military targets across the Middle East and beyond, The plan would deliver the Iranians with a Russian-made Kanopus-V satellite equipped with a high-resolution camera which would greatly enhance Iran’s spying capabilities, allowing continuous monitoring of facilities ranging from Persian Gulf oil refineries and Israeli military bases to Iraqi barracks that house U.S. troops

Whist the Kanopus-V is marketed for civilian use, Iranian military officials and leaders of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps have made numerous trips to Russia since 2018 to help negotiate the terms of the agreement. On the other side of the coin, Russian experts have travelled to Iran in which to help train ground crews who would operate the satellite from a newly built facility near the northern city of Karaj. Under the agreement reached with Moscow, Iran’s new satellite would be launched in Russia and would feature Russian hardware, including a camera with a resolution of 1.2 meters — a significant improvement over Iran’s current capabilities, though still far short of the quality achieved by U.S. spy satellites or high-end commercial satellite imagery providers. More importantly, Iran would be able to “task” the new satellite to spy on locations of its choosing, and as often as it wishes.

Even more concerning, is the possibility that Iran could(and most likely would)  share the imagery with pro-Iranian militia groups across the region, from the Houthi rebels battling Saudi-backed government forces in Yemen to Hezbollah fighters in southern Lebanon and Shiite militias in Iraq and Syria.