From early 1990s study of Iran's national security and defense became a top priority when its military activities, nuclear program and "shocking" > national defense construction became focus of attention all over world.
His enemy in Iran-Iraq War was soundly defeated by US-led coalition in 100 Hour Persian Gulf War (Operation Desert Storm) after Saddam Hussein annexed small emirate in August 1990 and was expelled from Kuwait.
Since its defeat in February 1991, Iraqi army, once known as "the world's fourth largest army", has become a shadow of itself. Iran has become most serious opponent of status quo in Middle East.
The situation was exacerbated by overthrow of Saddam Hussein's regime after US invasion and occupation in 2003.
In fact, The armed forces of Islamic Republic of Iran have come a long way since their defeat in 1988.
In addition, Tehran cultivates power of ideological sympathy and can provide material assistance, which will allow Iran to gain more power and influence throughout Middle East.
By taking Iranian propaganda and its outrageous claims of achievement and criticism of threat posed by Iran as a stark warning, country has made progress in producing more accurate ballistic missiles.
Projecting power on a regional scale is part of "Frontier Defense" strategy, aimed at protecting their own interests from encroachment.
The rise of cyber warfare capabilities, mass production of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), and pursuit of nuclear weapons are still hotly debated.
In this tense atmosphere, it is not surprising that literature on Iran's military policy, rearmament, national security and defense, and its nuclear ambitions is mushrooming.
In some literature on Iran, these authors exaggerate Iranian threat without trying to explain why it is a threat, often arguing that United States could engage in a costly new war.
Many of these studies were written by those who were not objective analysts, exacerbated by a lack of empathy or cultural understanding.
It's ironic because they are trying to explain behavior of Iranians through lens of a culture that sees Iranians behaving way they do because of unchanging customs, beliefs and norms dating back to antiquity.
There is also some scholarly literature on Iran, both historical and contemporary, and within scholarly literature there is a sub-category of military historians who have studied trajectory of Iran's military history from ancient times to present day.
The most notable of these are Stephanie Cronin, William Fryer, Rudy Matthews, Kavi Farrock, Michael Axworthy and Stephen Ward< /strong>.
Another sub-category within Political Science and Strategic Studies is dedicated to contemporary Iranian security topics, where for various reasons, scholarly literature has often had little or no impact on political arena.
Politicians are not interested in military history lessons or political science theoretical analysis, and rigorous, detailed, and sensitive academic literature is often perceived as IRI-supportive, "naive", too academic for political value, and, in short, it does not support prevailing narratives about Iran's "malicious" nature and behavior.
The author argues that concept of how and why a political entity fights way it does, originated with British naval historian Julian Corbett, and not with British Army Captain B. H. Liddell Hart, as often erroneously believed, although latter describes this at length in his English Way of War.
Subsequently, methods of waging war between nations bore great fruit, but military historians never theoretically developed this concept, perhaps due to a reluctance to deal with theory and concepts that are practiced in social sphere. Sciences.
The sub-field of strategic studies in international relations encompasses it, but often confuses it with strategic culture, which, however, is not same as way war is waged.
Strategic culture is concerned with how political and military elites think about threats, force structures, defensive readiness, and war organization; in this case, it helps to determine style of warfare.
The work of two key thinkers has shaped conceptual debate about relationship between war and environment.
In On War Carl von Clausewitz talks about ways of waging war in various societies: halfTatars, ancient republics, medieval feudal lords and trading cities, eighteenth-century kings, and rulers and peoples of nineteenth century wage war in their own way, using different methods and pursuing different goals.
Forty years ago, British historian and strategist Michael Howard wrote a seminal article that includes a line that reveals path of regime war:
Battles and battles are not chess or football games that are played completely out of context according to strictly defined rules, war is not a large-scale tactical exercise.
These are social conflicts, as Marxist military analysts say, and can only be fully understood when one understands nature of society one is fighting.
The roots of victory and defeat are often to be found far from battlefield, in political, social and economic factors that explain why armies form way they do and why their leaders behave way they do.
War style refers to "how nations understand conflicts and fight battles".
How and why humans fight way they do has been a mystery since beginning of Civilization War. How a political entity prepares and fights in a war is determined by many factors.
Geography is unchanged. Countries cannot change their location. Geography often determines structure of military forces and readiness for defense, but location affects city-states, empires, and nation-states in different ways.
The way war is fought is also influenced by geopolitics, technological developments, nature of political and socio-economic systems, strategic culture and ideology of ruling elite, none of which is decisive, and all of which play an important role. Role in emergence of method of military effect.
In addition, it is unhistorical to say that from 500 BC. e. Iran had a unified way of waging war. Origins and trajectories of ancient and modern Iranian wars.
The Iranians went down in history, shrouded in mythology, centuries before emergence of first Iranian empire, when, living in Central Asia, their homeland, Avestan, settled in Iran.
Not much is known about them other than that they were nomads, these people were priests, warriors and shepherds, warriors mobilized under command of clan chiefs on trips suitable for Central Asian plains war.
Migrating to plateau, these Indo-European languages changed course of history, and a group of people settled in provinces of Azerbaijan and Kurdistan in what is now northern Iran; they are known to us as Medes. .
After many clashes with aggressive Assyrian Empire in east, they united into one state, and then into a mini-empire, the Medes created a cavalry army and bred horses, this force is more mobile than huge Assyrian army with its various specialized units.
Another group of Indo-Aryans moved into what became known as Fars or Pasua, Greeks called them Persians and they called themselves Iranians or Aryans.
For a long time they lived in shadow of Medes, but finally, under rule of mighty warrior Cyrus Great, they defeated Medes and incorporated them in 550 BC. Achaemenid Empire .
No other ancient empire, not even Rome or any other great state, ruled over such an ecologically and ethnically diverse land, and it was first world empire to span multiple sub-regions, and at its height, empire encompassed almost entire Middle East and ruled over 70 million people of various races.
The empire's resources allowed its sovereign to project power over long distances and wage "joint" wars, coordinating naval forces in Mediterranean and armies on campaign.
Most of Achaemenid forces were a "prestigious" army designed to legitimize Great King and deter enemy with their sheer size, however we must be careful not to exaggerate size of Achaemenid army, a common mistake for observers of Greece .
The exercise of control, mobilization of resources, and defense of empire were main concerns of Achaemenid monarchs, and, as noted by famous Greek general Xenophonin Economics, most of them took their military duties very seriously, and armed forces form basis of this huge country.
The dynasty also had weak and licentious monarchs who paid price of defeat, internal subversion or were overthrown by nobles, who formed main army and provided strength and resources for cavalry, main branch of imperial army.
In turn, central position of cavalry was associated with dominance of nobility, only they could afford to maintain stables and expensive equipment associated with them, cavalry was mobile and could quickly cover vast expanses of land in response to threats advancing from any direction.
Cavalry also allowed monarchy to counter incursions from fast-moving nomadic warriors that often threatened empire's far frontiers, especially on its vulnerable northern and southern flanks.
Carefully selected Iranians have created some of best breeds in the world: horses strong enough to carry their own armor and allow them to carefully guard "knights", farmer infantry, vassal states and Greek mercenaries.
With exception of elite and professional Greek mercenary infantry, Achaemenid infantry is made up primarily of peasants, poorly equipped and well trained, and unlike nobility, peasants cannot provide their own military equipment or resources Lots of time for combat training.
Faced with a powerful but ossified, heavily armed Greek hoplite phalanx, Achaemenid infantry were defeated due to poor equipment, lack of armor, and poor training.
These were main factors of difference between heavily armed Greek infantry and Achaemenid infantry during Greco-Iranian Wars of fifth century BC.
Neither side is advancing an effective combined arms force in which cavalry, infantry and archers work together to achieve something more than sum of their parts.
The Greeks had an important branch, heavy infantry, and Iranians had a lot of them, but never managed to integrate them, relying mainly on their cavalry.
The Achaemenid Empire fell into hands of Alexander Great and his Macedonian army in fourth century BC. Thanks to reforms initiated by his father Philip II of Macedon, Macedonian army had original Greek phalanx. Big improvement.
The genius of Alexander as a consummate military leader, creation of an effective combined arms Macedonian military machine, and inability of Achaemenid elite to consider other measures to prevent a Macedonian invasion were a major factor in destruction of Achaemenid empire.
Greek allied mercenary infantry commanders have proposed a "scorched earth" strategy to Iranian command to destroy everything in Alexander's path, but Iranian nobles say they will not consider such "shameful" measures< /strong>.
The truth is more prosaic:The property destroyed to stop Alexander's advance was theirs.
A country is created in one war after another, winner is king, whoever is stronger will be final king, not to mention ruling class, where "the weak eat strong" are more strict?
Carl von Clausewitz "At War"
Xenophon in Economics
The Iranian way of war: from Cyrus Great to Qasem Soleimani
Iran-Iraq war and psychological warfare. Ji Peilin, Ji Kaiyun
Research on Iranian-Iraqi relations. Fan Hongda