War o the Ceeties

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The War o the Ceeties wis five series of air raids, missile attacks and artillery shellings on major ceeties and urban auries initiatit by Saddam Hussein's Iraqi Air Force, with the aim of disrupting the morale of Iran during the Iran–Iraq War. The first phase of air strikes were unnertaken by the Iraqi Air Force, which normally wis followed by retaliation by Iranian Airmed Forces.

Iraq attacked major ceeties in the wastren hauf of Iran, including Tehran, Tabriz, Isfahan and Shiraz, in addition tae attacks tae Iranian touns and ceeties close tae the front. Iran's retaliations targetit maistly Baghdad, Kirkuk and Basra.

Raids[eedit | eedit soorce]

While Iraq haed launched numerous attacks with aircraft and missiles against border ceeties frae the beginning of the war and sporadic raids on Iran's main ceeties, this wis the first seestematic strategic bombing that Iraq cairied out during the war. This would become known as the "War o the Ceeties". With the help of the US and the Wast, Iraq's air force haed been rebiggit and expandit.[1] Meanwhile, Iran, due tae sanctions and lack of spare parts, haed heivily curtailit its air force operations. Iraq used Tu-22 Blinder and Tu-16 Badger strategic bombers tae carry out lang-range heich-speed raids on Iranian ceeties, including Tehran. Fighter-bombers such as the MiG-25 Foxbat and Su-22 Fitter were uised against smaller or shorter range targets, as well as escorting the strategic bombers.[1] Ceevilian and industrial targets were hit bi the raids,[citation needit] and each successful raid inflictit economic damage frae regular strategic bombing.[1]

In response, the Iranians deployed F-4 Phantoms tae combat the Iraqis, and eventually they deployed F-14s as well. By 1986, Iran also expandit its air defense network tae take the load of the fighting off the air force. Later in the war, Iraqi raids primarily conseestit of missile attacks while air attacks were uised on fewer, more important targets.[1] Stairting in 1987, Saddam awso ordered several chemical attacks on ceevilian targets in Iran, such as the toun of Sardasht.[2]

Iran awso launched several retaliatory air raids on Iraq, while primarily shelling border ceeties sic as Basra. Iran also bought some Scud missiles frae Libie and launched them against Baghdad. These too inflictit damage upon Iraq.[3]

On 7 February 1984 (during the First War o the Ceeties), Saddam ordered his air force tae attack eleven Iranian ceeties;[4] bombardments ceased on 22 February 1984. Though Saddam haed aimed for the attacks tae demoralise Iran and force them tae negotiate, they haed little effect.[citation needit] Iraq's air force took heivy losses,[citation needit] and Iran struck back, hitting Baghdad and ither Iraqi ceeties. Nevertheless, the attacks resultit in tens of thousands of ceevilian casualties on baith sides, and became known as the first "war o the ceeties". It wis estimatit that 1,200 Iranian ceevilians were killt during the raids in February alone.[3] There were five such major exchynges throughout the course of the war, and multiple minor anes. While interior ceeties such as Tehran, Tabriz, Qom, Isfahan and Shiraz did receive numerous raids, it wis the ceeties of wastren Iran that sufferit the maist daiths and destruction.

Series[eedit | eedit soorce]

Five series of seestematic air raids were conductit ower eight years.

The first series, initiatit by the Iraqi Airmy, lastit frae February 7 tae 22, 1984, and wis conductit in response tae the Iranian refusal tae observe a ceasefire.

The seicont series wis conductit frae Mairch 22 tae Apryle 8, 1985 and wis in response to Iranian Operation Badr. This series involved attacking mony Iranian urban areas in wastren Iran, including Tehran, Tabriz, Shiraz, and Isfahan.

The third series wis lastit frae January 17 tae 25, 1987, and wis conductit in response tae Iranian Operation Dawn 8.

The fowerth series wis conducted for three consecutive months frae February tae Apryle 1987.

The fifth series wis the maist intensive, and wis conductit by Iraq once the Iranian front lines showed elements of weakening.[5] It wis conductit in January-February 1988, and involved missile attacks tae some Iranian ceeties.[6]

Eftermath[eedit | eedit soorce]

The conflict caused initiation of Iran's missile programme by IRGC.

References[eedit | eedit soorce]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Cooper, Tom. "Bombed By Blinders Part 2". 
  2. Daraghai, Borzou. "1987 Chemical Strike Still Haunts Iran". LA Times. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 Farrokh, Kaveh. Iran at War: 1500–1988. Oxford: Osprey Publishing. ISBN 9781780962214. 
  4. Karsh, Efraim (25 April 2002). The Iran–Iraq War: 1980–1988. Osprey Publishing. pp. 1–8, 12–16, 19–82. ISBN 978-1841763712. 
  5. Efraim Karsh (2002). The Iran-Iraq War, 1980-1988. Osprey Publishing. ISBN 978-1-84176-371-2. 
  6. Perrimond, Guy (2002). "1944–2001: The threat of theatre ballistic missiles" TTU Online.