Iranian Navy and IRGC Bolstered With “Abu Mahdi” – Lethal Cruise Missile
Iran has bolstered its defense with “Abu Mahdi”, a new long-range naval cruise missile, capable of confronting electronic warfare and evading radar systems. It is equipped with artificial intelligence (AI) to chart the missile’s optimal flight path, range of up to 1,000 km.
Dubbed Abu Mahdi after Abu Mahdi al Muhandis, the deputy commander of Iraqi’s Tehran-backed Popular Mobilization Units, the missile is Iranian made; al Muhandis was killed with IRGC’s top commander Qasem Soleimani by a U.S. airstrike in January 2020. It can expand the naval defenses of Iran and expand the zone Iran can threaten, as well as broaden the operational range.
Defense Minister Brig. Gen. Mohammad-Reza Ashtiani touted the new missile could be launched from secret locations deep inside Iranian territory to blow up enemy warships, frigates, and carriers. The new missile dramatically expands the coverage area of the Iranian navy, can be launched from stationed and moving pads alike, and its navigation system is capable of updating the final impact point in flight.
Iran’s defense ministry said the Abu Mahdi launch system can launch many missiles quickly on a variety of trajectories and from a variety of fixed and mobile launchers. Moreover, it makes enemy aircraft carrier jets ineffective. Rear Admiral Ali Reza Tangsiri said deterring the enemy from approaching Iranian coastlines is a key aspect of the new missile. He explained that if an Iranian military vessel travels 1,000 km from the country’s coasts and launches the Abu Mahdi missile, the enemy’s aircraft carrier will have to retreat at least 1,000 km to avoid the long-range cruise missile, rendering the aircraft carrier’s fighter jets useless.
It operates with an integrated navigation system and robust propulsion, thus capable of firing in quick succession.