CENTCOM Commander’s Interest in Russian Iranian Satellites “Not Particularly” About US Security in the Middle East | Voice of America
CAIRO, EGYPT – Iran’s reported desire to purchase an advanced Russian satellite system is not “of particular concern” for US security in the region, according to the commander who oversees US military operations in the Middle East.
In an interview with VOA, General Frank McKenzie, commander of the US Central Command, said the Russian Kanopus-V satellite was not effective at targeting.
“There’s really not much you can do with it,” he said. “It would probably allow them to see something the size of a school bus, which isn’t going to be of particular concern to us.”
Earlier this month, U.S. and Middle Eastern officials told the Washington Post that Iranian military officials were deeply involved in the acquisition of the satellite and had made several trips to Russia since 2018 to work on a purchase agreement. of the system. While the Kanopus-V is marketed for civilian use, Iranian military officials have been heavily involved in the acquisition, and leaders of the elite Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps have made several trips to Russia since 2018 to help negotiate the terms of the deal, officials mentioned.
The Koanupus-V is marketed for civilian use, and McKenzie said some commercial imaging options provide better visuals than what the satellite’s high-resolution camera could capture.
“While it might seem appealing to put it (the satellite) in space on a Russian rocket, if that’s the way they want to spend their money and do it, they should go ahead,” he said. he declared.
Meanwhile, Iranian-backed militias continued to attack US and NATO forces in Iraq with small, armed drones.
“We’ve been attacked three times in the past little over a month,” McKenzie said.
He and other military officials told VOA that Iran has switched to using compact kinetic attacks because their armed drones can damage US resources without causing casualties, keeping the threat just below one. a level that could trigger retaliation from the United States.
“This is a very dangerous path that they are going down,” McKenzie warned, “and they are doing it because, as we should remember, they failed and their main objective, which was a political objective of us. get out of Iraq. ”
The military is still conducting forensic analyzes to determine exactly where the drones used in the latest attacks on US forces came from.