When it comes to missile tests, the entire world is currently focused on the communist dictatorship of North Korea. However, one of America’s oldest enemies just recently fired a missile that could directly threaten U.S. military installations in the Middle East.
According to the Daily Caller, on Saturday, Tehran publicly announced that they had successfully tested a medium-range ballistic missile that was capable of traveling up to 1,200 miles. This rocket, called the Khorramshahr missile, was broadcast on Iranian state television.
Reuters reported that Iranian TV said, “You are seeing images of the successful test of the Khorramshahr ballistic missile with a range of 2,000 km, the latest missile of our country.”
As you may have guessed, the US was not terribly happy with this missile demonstration. We stand poised to strike and at the ready at all times.
President Trump wrote on Twitter, “Iran just test-fired a Ballistic Missile capable of reaching Israel. They are also working with North Korea.”
The US government warned that the Khorramshahr missile could carry multiple warheads at once. Given this, Iran and North Korea seem intent on following the same path vis-a-vis saber rattling. President Trump is also correct that Pyongyang and Tehran work closely together in regards to their missile programs.
The Diplomat has written that: “While media coverage on Iran-North Korea military cooperation has focused principally on technician exchanges between the two countries and nuclear cooperation, ballistic missile development has been the most consistent area of Tehran-Pyongyang technological cooperation since the Iran nuclear deal was signed in 2015. This collaboration explains the striking similarities between Iranian EMAD and North Korean Nodong missiles.”
Besides this close cooperation, it is also worrying that Iran chose to perform this missile test just after President Trump gave a rousing address to the United Nations about the threat posed by the North Korean missile program.
Unlike North Korea, Iran has the money to support an enlarged military state. Iran is also a growing hegemon in Middle East, especially since the Syrian Civil War has been all but won by the Iranian- and Russian-backed Syrian Arab Army of President Bashar al-Assad. Similarly, while Coalition aircraft have played a big role in driving out ISIS fighters in Iraq, Iranian-backed Shi’ite militias have performed a lot of the on-the-ground work, thus enhancing Tehran’s sway over Baghdad.
As President Trump makes more and more noise about leaving Obama’s Iranian nuclear deal, expect Iran to tests more missiles and to warn President Trump against either leaving the deal or trying to punish Iran for violating the terms of the agreement.
Iran and North Korea both recognize that many Americans would like to see their current regimes toppled. By threatening the US and American allies with nuclear annihilation, these dictatorships are trying to guarantee a future for their regimes.
A smarter US response would follow the path of Ronald Reagan, who recognized that the hollowness of the Soviet regime could not sustain itself. Let Iran and North Korea waste money on their armament programs while using violence to suppress individual freedoms at home.