Islamic Republic of Iran Army

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Islamic Republic of Iran Army
Seal of the Islamic Republic of Iran Army.svg
Seal of the Islamic Republic of Iran Army
Flag of the Islamic Republic of Iran Army.svg
Ceremonial flag of the Islamic Republic of Iran Army.svg
Flags of the Islamic Republic of Iran Army
  • Arabic: وَإِنَّ جُنْدنَا لَهُمْ الْغَالِبُونَ‎ "And Our Soldiers, They Verily Would Be The Victors." [Quran 37:173] (Heraldry slogan)
  • Persian: ارتش فدای ملت‎, lit. 'Army Sacrificed for the Nation' (Unofficial)[4]
  • Persian: خدا، شاه، ميهن‎, lit. 'God, Shah, Fatherland' (Pre 1979)[5]
Current form 1979; 39 years ago (1979) (Islamic Republic)
Service branches
Headquarters Tehran, Iran
Commander-in-Chief Amir Sarlashkar A. Mousavi
Branch Commanders
Military age 18[6]
Conscription 2 years[6]
Active personnel
  • MEI estimate (2011): 420,000[7]
    • 350,000 (Ground Force)
    • 37,000 (Air Force)
    • 18,000 (Navy)
    • 15,000 (Air Defense)
Budget $2,036.91 million (1395 SH)[8]
Related articles

The Islamic Republic of Iran Army[9] (Persian: ارتش جمهوری اسلامی ایران‎), acronymed AJA (Persian: آجا‎), simply known as the Iranian Army or Artesh (Persian: ارتش‎, translit. Arteš meaning military in Persian), is the "conventional military of Iran"[10] and part of Armed Forces of the Islamic Republic of Iran. The army is tasked to protect the territorial integrity of the Iranian state from external and internal threats and to project power.[10] Artesh has its own Joint Staff[7] which coordinates its four separate service branches: Ground Forces, Air Force, Navy and the newly established Air Defense Force.[10]

Missions and deployments

Iranian army fought two major invasions in modern era. In the first time, 1941 invasion by Soviet and British forces during World War II resulted to decisive enemy victory, deposition of Iran's Shah and five years of occupation.[3] The second time, 1980 Iraqi invasion started a war lasting for almost eight years, which ended to status quo ante bellum. The army has been actively engaged in fighting tribal and separatist rebellions since the 1940s and so far has successfully suppressed Azeri separatism, Kurdish separatism, Arab separatism and Balochistan separatism to protect Iran's territorial integrity.[3]

Extraterritorial operations

From 1972 to 1976, Iranian army troops were sent to Oman to put down Dhofar Rebellion.[3] In 1976, a contingent were sent to Pakistan to assist the Pakistan army against Baloch insurgents.[3] Iranian army personnel were also reportedly present in the Vietnam War.[11] In 2016, members of Iranian army's special forces were deployed to fight in Syrian Civil War.[11]

International peacekeeping missions

Iranian Army peacekeeper's battalion in a 2012 parade

Iranian Army participated in United Nations (UN) peacekeeping missions in the 1970s, sending a battalion to replace Peruvian forces in Golan Heights part of Disengagement Observer Force. After Israeli invasion of Lebanon, bulk of the forces were deployed in Interim Force in Lebanon until late 1978. Replaced by Fininish forces, Iranian peacekeepers were withdrawn in 1979 following the revolution.[12][13]

In 1993, Iranian Army reestablished its professional peacekeeping units and declared that they are ready to be dispatched to any place in the world the UN wants.[14] Since then, Iran has deployed forces in Mission in Ethiopia and Eritrea in 2003 and African Union Mission in Darfur in 2012.[15]

Iranian Army's maritime branch has launched several missions to fight piracy off the coast of Somalia,[16] securing the release of many other countries' sailors.[17]

Aid missions

Ground Force soldiers carrying off medical supplies for 2003 Bam earthquake

The Iranian Army has deployed forces to help Iranian Red Lion and Sun and Red Crescent societies in rescue and relief missions of internal disasters, including clearing roads, communications establishment, logistics and goods supply, airlifting equimpents, debris and devastation, transporting casualties and personnel and setting up field hospitals and post-hospital care centers.[18][19]



See also


  1. ^ Shahbazi, A. Sh. (August 12, 2011) [December 15, 1986]. "ARMY i. Pre-Islamic Iran". In Yarshater, Ehsan. Encyclopædia Iranica. 5. II. New York City: Bibliotheca Persica Press. pp. 489–499. Retrieved March 15, 2016. 
  2. ^ Cronin, Stephanie (2012), The Making of Modern Iran: State and Society under Riza Shah, 1921-1941, Routledge, pp. 37–38, ISBN 1136026940 
  3. ^ a b c d e Sheikh-ol-Islami, M. J. (August 12, 2011) [December 15, 1986]. "ARMY v. Pahlavi Period". In Yarshater, Ehsan. Encyclopædia Iranica. 5. II. New York City: Bibliotheca Persica Press. pp. 508–514. Retrieved March 15, 2016. 
  4. ^ "Army Sacrificed for the Nation", Hamshahri (in Persian), 16 April 2008, 48998, retrieved 1 June 2017 
  5. ^ Ward, Steven R. (2014), Immortal, Updated Edition: A Military History of Iran and Its Armed Forces, Georgetown University Press, p. 209, ISBN 9781626160651 
  6. ^ a b "How I learned to stop worrying and love the Iranian army", Tehran Bureau, The Guardian, 23 July 2015, retrieved 25 October 2017 
  7. ^ a b Hossein Aryan (November 15, 2011), The Artesh: Iran’s Marginalized and Under-Armed Conventional Military, Middle East Institute, retrieved December 15, 2015 
  8. ^ "Iran decreases IRGC budget for next year". AzerNews Newspaper. 18 January 2016. Retrieved 30 March 2016. 
  9. ^ Army in the Passage of History: Annals, Revolution, the Holy Defense (in Persian). University of Command and Staff. 2012 [1391]. p. 48. ISBN 978-964-2523-38-2. 
  10. ^ a b c Simon, Rita J.; Abdel-Moneim, Mohamed Alaa (2011), A Handbook of Military Conscription and Composition the World Over, Lexington Books, pp. 152–153, ISBN 0739167529 
  11. ^ a b Qaidaari, Abbas (28 April 2016). "Who sent Iranian Green Berets to Syria?". Al-Monitor. Archived from the original on 2016-05-02. Retrieved 29 April 2016. 
  12. ^ Mays, Terry M. (2010), Historical Dictionary of Multinational Peacekeeping, Historical Dictionaries of International Organizations, 29, Scarecrow Press, p. 279, ISBN 0810875160 
  13. ^ Iran: Country Study Guide, World Country Study Guide Library, 78, Int'l Business Publications, 2005, p. 141, ISBN 0739714767 
  14. ^ "Iranian Peacekeepers Ready to Serve UN Missions, Anytime, Anywhere—Army Colonel". United Nations Information Centre - Tehran. 26 May 2015. Retrieved 25 April 2016. 
  15. ^ "Iran peacekeepers deployed in Darfur". Press TV. 21 April 2012. Retrieved 25 April 2016. 
  16. ^ Wilkin, Sam (8 April 2015). Pomeroy, Robin, ed. "Iran deploys warships off Yemen's coast". Reuters. Retrieved 25 April 2016. 
  17. ^ Wilkin, Sam (7 January 2012). Pomeroy, Robin, ed. "US navy frees Iranians held by pirates". Al Jazeera. Retrieved 25 April 2016. 
  18. ^ Razani, Reza (1973), The Engineering Aspects of the Qir Earthquake of 10 April 1972 in Southern Iran: A Report to the National Science Foundation, National Academies, p. 141 
  19. ^ Abolghasemi, Hassan; Poorheidari, Gholamreza; Mehrabi, Ali; Foroutan, Ghasem (October 2005), "Iranian military forces in the Bam earthquake", Military Medicine, 170 (10): 859 

External links