Iran could soon provide the Russian military with even deadlier weapons than the Iranian drones it has been using to target Ukrainian civilian infrastructure: ballistic missiles. The United States should not wait for Iran to supply, and Russia to start launching, these devastating munitions at Ukrainian cities before it sends essential military equipment to deal with this threat. Instead, Washington should preemptively provide Ukraine with the necessary offensive and defensive weaponry against Iranian ballistic missiles.
The acquisition of Iranian unmanned aerial vehicles has enabled Russia to expand operations against front-line and increasingly interior civilian areas in Ukraine. Russia has rapidly become the largest operator of the systems, vastly surpassing any previous recorded use of them, according to the Jewish Institute for National Security of America’s Iran Projectile Tracker, which details Iranian-linked attacks. September 2021 held the record for the most Iran-linked UAVs used in attacks at 66; but Russia reportedly launched over 70 in September this year and more than 230 in October.
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