On August 11, Hezbollah publicly flaunted their advanced precision-guided missile system known as Thaar Allah (God’s Revenge). Revealed through their media outlet, Al-Manar TV, this anti-tank weapon, equipped with Kornet missiles explicitly designed to counter main battle tanks, is a grim symbol of Iran’s substantial support to its proxy forces.
On August 11, Al-Manar TV, the media outlet affiliated with Lebanon’s Hezbollah, reported the group’s use of a precision-guided missile (ATGM) launcher, known as the Thaar Allah (God’s Revenge) system, in its operations against Israel since 2015. During the special program that coincided with the remembrance of “Hezbollah’s triumph over Israeli forces in July 2006,” the channel aired “previously unseen footage of the new guided missile system.
In a detailed interview on the channel, a high-ranking official from the Shia movement, referred to as Hajj Jihad, praised the anti-tank launcher’s “excellent results” and its utilization of Kornet missiles. Equipped with Kornet anti-tank guided missiles, the system is specifically designed to counter main battle tanks.
The footage demonstrated the system’s dual platform, effectively launching two missiles in succession, each accurately striking and disabling various targets. The report also emphasized critical features of the new system, such as its capacity to hit and destroy targets simultaneously, adaptability for use in both daytime and nighttime and remarkable mobility and maneuverability.
Hizbullah’s anti-tank units have a diverse inventory of guided missiles, including models such as the AT-3 Sagger, AT-4 Spigot (also known as Fagot), AT-5 Spandrel (or Konkurs), AT-13 Metis-M, AT-14 Kornet-E, and even the US-made TOW.
The AT-4 Spigot and TOW missiles were first deployed against IDF’s Merkava Mark II and III tanks in the late 1990s. During the 2006 war, newer additions to Hizbullah’s arsenal, like the AT-5 Spandrel, AT-13 Metis-M, and AT-14 Kornet-E missiles, were employed for the first time. Notably, the AT-14 Kornet-E missiles had a significant impact, inflicting considerable damage on IDF-armored vehicles. Hezbollah’s ATGMs are also effective against buildings and other fortifications.
It is possible that Hezbollah introduced the “Dehlavieh,” the Iranian version of the Russian kornet (The project was named “Dehlavie” – after the name of the city in the province of Khuzestan, wherein one of the major battles of the Iran-Iraq war took place).
The UK Royal Navy stated on March 2h that it seized a weapons shipment that was found on a small vessel that was spotted in the Gulf of Oman on route to the Houthis in Yemen by a US unmanned aircraft and intercepted by the Royal Marines operating from the frigate HMS Lancaster after a high-speed chase.
The shipment included Iranian versions of Russian Kornet anti-tank guided missiles 9M133M-1 and 9M133M-2 missiles for the Iranian Dehlaviya ATGM (a copy of the Russian Kornet-EM ATGM) and medium-range ballistic missile components,” two of the seven Kornet-type missiles were labeled as 9M133-1s made in 2018, and the rest as longer-range 9M133-2s made in 2021. The two older missiles and two of the 9M133-2s were labeled as thermobaric weapons, and the rest as anti-tank missiles.
The original Dehlavieh missile, developed in Iran and based on the initial model of the Kornet family, was known by the code 9M133-1. Newer versions have been developed under the designation 9M133M-2, with the primary distinction being an increased range. The latest Dehlavieh missile model boasts a range of 8 km and a penetration power of 1,300 mm. Manufactured by Defense Industries, this new model has been delivered to the IRGC Ground Forces.
Hezbollah is currently showcasing the weapon system, positioning it as a part of the psychological warfare they are waging against Israel. Within this strategy, Hezbollah warns against any invasion of Israeli territory and emphasizes its extensive and precise military resources, including thousands of rockets.
Simultaneously, Hezbollah vigilantly monitors both the written and broadcast media in Israel. They quickly translate the statements of protest leaders, former military commanders, and other high-ranking officials in the security and political systems who speak out against legal reform and the Israeli government. This tactic serves to highlight the discord and crises within Israeli society.
The recent unveiling by Hezbollah of the anti-tank weapons system underscores Iran’s persistent role in arming its proxies with advanced weaponry, including Anti-Tank Guided Missiles (ATGMs). This support is apparent in its conflicts with regional and global powers such as Israel, the United States (in Syria and Iraq), and Saudi Arabia (through the ongoing transfer of weapons to the Houthis in Yemen despite improved Saudi relations).
Iran’s strategic influence in the Middle East has been notably characterized by its significant export of arms, including ATGMs and drones, to its PROXIES in the region. These include Hezbollah and Palestinian organizations (Hamas, PIJ) and pro-Iranian Shiite militias in Syria, Iraq, and Yemen.
The export of ATGMs has been a contentious issue, as these weapons target and destroy heavily armored vehicles. By supplying these weapons, Iran has been able to bolster its allies while challenging its regional adversaries, thereby playing a pivotal role in shaping the dynamics of conflict across the Middle East.
This extensive provision of ATGMs is a testament to Iran’s ongoing commitment to its allies and its readiness to counter perceived threats from opposing forces, even as it navigates complex relationships and shifting alliances within the region.
Iran Dossier Iran’s Proliferation of Anti-Tank Guided Missiles (ATGMs) Elevates Regional Tensions