Anticipating Adversary Military Interventions
Sep 27, 2021
In recent years, Iran has risen as one of the most significant regional challenges faced by the United States. In this report, the authors assess when, where, why, and how Iran conducts military interventions and identify key signposts of Iranian military interventions that can be used as early warning indicators for U.S. military planners and can guide decisions about the use of forces in the Middle East region.
Patterns, Drivers, and Signposts
|PDF file||1.9 MB|
|PDF file||0.1 MB|
|Add to Cart||Paperback202 pages||$33.00||$26.40 20% Web Discount|
In recent years, Iran has risen as one of the most significant regional challenges faced by the United States, with Tehran's nuclear and ballistic missile programs, support for terrorist groups and militias, cyber activities and influence operations, and military interventions in the region.
In this report, the authors assess when, where, why, and how Iran conducts military interventions and identify key signposts of Iranian military interventions that can be used as early warning indicators for U.S. military planners and that can guide decisions about the use of forces in the Middle East region. They identify the factors that are most likely to shape Iran's military intervention decisions and analyze those factors as they relate to two detailed case studies: (1) Iran's involvement in the ongoing Syrian civil war and (2) Iran's post-2014 intervention in Iraq to counter the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.
The future of great-power competition and how it plays out in the Middle East, coupled with the regional landscape, are important factors that will shape how Iran sees its military activities. Although a move away from a period of greater U.S. power in the region would seem to provide fewer threats and more opportunities for Iran, the relations among Beijing, Moscow, and Washington and how they affect Iranian perceptions of the regional balance of power bear careful monitoring.
Identifying Possible Drivers of Iranian Military Interventions
Patterns in Historical Iranian Military Interventions
Case Study: Iranian Intervention in the Syrian Civil War (2011–Present)
Case Study: Iranian Intervention to Counter the Rising ISIS Threat in Iraq (2014–Present)
The research described in this report was sponsored by the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff, G-3/5/7, U.S. Army and conducted within Strategy, Doctrine, and Resources Program within the RAND Arroyo Center.
This report is part of the RAND Corporation Research report series. RAND reports present research findings and objective analysis that address the challenges facing the public and private sectors. All RAND reports undergo rigorous peer review to ensure high standards for research quality and objectivity.
This document and trademark(s) contained herein are protected by law. This representation of RAND intellectual property is provided for noncommercial use only. Unauthorized posting of this publication online is prohibited; linking directly to this product page is encouraged. Permission is required from RAND to reproduce, or reuse in another form, any of its research documents for commercial purposes. For information on reprint and reuse permissions, please visit www.rand.org/pubs/permissions.
The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.