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Iran says can destroy US bases if attacked -- report

Revolutionary guard commander: US bases can be destroyed within "minutes" of an attack on Iran.

Us war game israel missileEnlarge
Israeli soldiers watch as a missile is launched from the Iron Dome defense system. A US war simulation of a possible scenario where Israel launched pre-emptive strikes against Iran's nuclear facilities would likely draw America into the conflict and cost hundreds of lives, a report said on March 20, 2012. (MENAHEM KAHANA/AFP/Getty Images)

A Revolutionary Guard commander today told Iran's semi-official Fars news agency that the Islamic Republic's missiles can attack US bases in the region in response to an attack on the country.

More from GlobalPost: US adds forces to Persian Gulf against Iran threat of blockade

The comments from Revolutionary Guards aerospace division commander Amir Ali Haji Zadeh come days after heavy-duty European Union oil sanctions hit Iran over its disputed nuclear program, which the West fears is being used to make a bomb. Iran denies any such activity.

"We have thought of measures to set up bases and deploy missiles to destroy all these [US] bases in the early minutes after an attack," Zadeh told Fars.

On Tuesday, the US stepped up its military presence in the Persian Gulf in case Iran tried to use its navy to cut off the Strait of Hormuz and disrupt key shipping routes, reported The New York Times

Iran also recently held military demonstrations in a show of strength. "These wargames are also a response to those who use political rudeness to speak to the Iranian nation and say that 'the military option is on the table'," Defense Minister Brigadier General Ahmad Vahidi told Fars today

Zadeh said Iranian ballistic missiles could hit 35 US bases in the region, according to Reuters. The claim that has not been independently verified. 

The US maintains military facilities in Bahrain, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Turkey, Afghanistan and Kyrgyzstan, said Reuters.

Zadeh added, "the occupied lands [Israel] are also good targets for us," a reference to what Iran perceives as renewed warmongering from the region's major US ally. 

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/middle-east/iran/120704/iran-says-can-destroy-us-bases-if-attacked-report