In This Review

The Iranian Military Under the Islamic Republic
The Iranian Military Under the Islamic Republic
By Nikola B. Schahgaldian
RAND Corporation, 1987, 164 pp

The main concern of this report prepared by RAND for the U.S. Defense Department is the present and possible future role of the Iranian armed forces, both the regular professional forces (following severe purges) and the pasdaran, or revolutionary guards. Lacking direct contacts and observations in Iran, the author has relied on Iranian publications and extensive interviews with emigrés to produce the first solid, though in some respects preliminary and perishable, study on this subject available in the West. One of the salient conclusions is that the military is unlikely to seize power in the event of political crisis, but that the pasdaran may have a significant part to play. The book does not deal with the conduct of the war with Iraq.