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Iranian fleet defeats US navy...in fake sea battle Open in fullscreen

The New Arab

Iranian fleet defeats US navy...in fake sea battle

The film imagines a war at sea between Iran and the US navy fleet [AFP]

Date of publication: 2 March, 2017

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A new Iranian propaganda film entitled "Battle of the Persian Gulf II" imagines a battle at the sea in response to an American attack on the country's nuclear programme.
In a climactic battle at sea, an Iranian commander orders his forces to open fire on a much larger US fleet, obliterating it with a barrage of rockets, some of which tear American flags from their masts.

The scenario unfolds in "Battle of the Persian Gulf II," a new Iranian animated film more than four years in the making that imagines a devastating response to an American attack on the country's nuclear program.

It might have seemed out of date this time last year, when a nuclear accord reached with world powers had lifted sanctions and raised hopes for a broader rapprochement between Iran and the West.

But now tensions are rising again. President Donald Trump has repeatedly criticised the nuclear deal, and his administration put Iran "on notice" last month after it tested a ballistic missile.

Iranians were meanwhile angered over Trump's travel ban, which temporarily barred their entry to the United States before it was blocked by the courts.

Director Farhad Azima says the timing of the film's release is 'purely coincidental'.

The nearly 90-minute film, a sequel to a production about the 1980s Iran-Iraq war, begins with a US attack on an Iranian nuclear reactor.

Washington has long warned it would take military action to prevent Iran from developing an atomic weapon, while Iran insists its nuclear programme is entirely peaceful.

That sets up a showdown in the Gulf, where the real-life US Navy has accused Iranian forces of harassing its vessels in recent months.

The film cost $250,000 to make

In the film, a character who closely resembles General Qassem Soleimani, the shadowy head of Iran's elite Quds Force, leads a single vessel against more than a dozen American warships.

When a US commander orders him to surrender or die, he replies: ""General, I am not a diplomat, I am a revolutionary!"

He warns that any American soldiers taking part in an attack on Iran "should order their coffins," before his forces destroy the whole US fleet.

Azima says his film cost $250,000 to make, and that producers raised the funds from ordinary people. He said there was no government involvement in the project.

"This is a response to hundreds of (anti-Iranian) American movies and video games," he said. "We are saying that if you fire one bullet against Iran, a rain of hot lead will be poured on your forces."

The "Battle of the Persian Gulf II" is showing in the Iranian city of Mashhad and set to open in other cities in the coming weeks.

A recent report by the US Office of Naval Intelligence revealed that a battle at sea between the US and Islamic Republic may soon be a likely scenario.

The report released on Wednesday suggests that the Islamic Republic is likely to purchase surface warships, submarines and anti-ship missiles in 2020, when a UN resolution prohibiting the Islamic Republic from acquiring sophisticated weapons expires.

After the ban expires Iran will be able to "pursue foreign acquisitions that have been inaccessible since sanctions were imposed," according a Bloomberg report.

Agencies contributed to this report.

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