Image credit: U.S. Navy

February 13, 2023

The West Has Captured Thousands of Iranian Weapons. Send Them to Ukraine.

By Jonathan Lord and Andrea Kendall-Taylor

Last month, both the U.S. and French navies intercepted cargo vessels smuggling thousands of weapons from Iran bound for Yemen. Tehran sent the shipments in defiance of a U.N. Security Council resolution banning the provision of weapons to the Houthis, Iran’s Yemeni partner and proxy force in the civil conflict. The two seizures alone netted thousands of Russian-style assault rifles and machine guns, dozens of antitank missiles, and over half a million rounds of ammunition. Likewise, last summer, the British navy snagged an Iranian vessel carrying surface-to-air missiles and engines for land-attack cruise missiles.

Instead of allowing these weapons to gather dust, Washington should send them to Ukraine.

Sending Iran’s weapons to Ukraine advances the mission in ways both tangible and symbolic. Washington should move without delay.

The U.S. Central Command (Centcom), through its work with European allies and Gulf partners, is well on its way to turning the critical waterways around the Arabian Peninsula into a panopticon, making it increasingly difficult for the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps navy to operate without detection. The U.S. Naval Forces Central Command’s Task Force 59 has blazed the trail of innovation in maritime domain awareness, which has enabled more and more seizures of smuggled Iranian weapons at sea. Its success in stymying Iran has left Centcom with vast stores of seized weapons. These weapons, once inspected and recorded by the United Nations as evidence of Iran’s violations of U.N. Security Council resolution 2624, are housed in U.S. military facilities across the region.

Read the full article from The Washington Post.

  • Commentary
    • Lawfare
    • March 20, 2023
    Twenty Years Later, the U.S. Military Is Still Lost in Iraq

    Having done little to enable the Iraqi security forces to sustain their own capabilities, the Biden administration is setting the conditions for another strategic failure in I...

    By Jonathan Lord

  • Podcast
    • March 17, 2023
    The Future of the Transatlantic Partnership, with Max Bergmann and David Kleimann

    What do the visits to the White House by European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz mean for the transatlantic partnership? Max Bergm...

    By Andrea Kendall-Taylor, Jim Townsend, Max Bergmann & David Kleimann

  • Podcast
    • March 17, 2023
    Defense & Aerospace Report Washington Roundtable

    On this week’s Defense & Aerospace Report Washington Roundtable, Dr. Patrick Cronin of the Hudson Institute, Michael Herson of American Defense International, former Pentagon ...

    By Jim Townsend

  • Podcast
    • March 17, 2023
    The Battle of Bakhmut

    In this episode of MWI’s Urban Warfare Project Podcast, John Spencer is joined again by Michael Kofman, director of the Russia Studies Program at CNA. He researches Russia and...

    By Michael Kofman

View All Reports View All Articles & Multimedia