Photos & video suggest Iran has sent SU-25 fighter jets to Iraq
by The Daily Lede
Iran has apparently provided Iraq with SU-25 fighter jets to assist in the offensive against Islamic State, the terrorist organization formerly known as ISIS.
A study conducted by analyst Joseph Dempsey at the International Institute for Strategic Studies in London provides evidence that the delivery of fighter jets to Iraq on July 1st originated from Iran and suggests that the US is cooperating with the Iranians in the fight against Islamic State.
Mr. Dempsey concludes that the markings, serial numbers and camouflage all fit with the Iranian fleet. A video posted by the Iraqi Ministry of Defense match those to aircraft belonging to the Iranian fleet
Mr. Dempsy also notes that the camouflage scheme on the three aircraft are very similar to that which is currently applied to Iranian SU-25 fighter jets–one which is not commonly used by other regimes. Evidence also points to areas where key markings appear to have been painted over in an effort to conceal them.
The Iranian Revolutionary Guard currently maintains a small number of SU-25’s–seven of which, ironically, used to be part of the Iraqi Air Force. The jets were moved to Iran during the First Gulf War for security and were later brought into service by the Iranians contrary to the wishes of the Iraqis.
Mr. Dempsey also points out that it is difficult to determine who is actually flying the aircraft as many of the pilots in Iraq have not flown in nearly 11 years. He suggests that ‘some level of external support is required’.