What Happened To The Iranian Fateh – It's An AR-15?

Nathaniel F
by Nathaniel F

Since we blogged about it a year ago, neither hide nor hair of the Iranian Fateh rifle has been seen, save the images previously released. Now, new photos released by poster ShahryarHedayatiSHBA are reported to be of the rifle – but they depict what appears to be an AR-15 variant, not the Masada-esque weapon previously displayed. The images are displayed below:

The new rifle is pretty modest looking, with upper and lower receivers appearing to be totally bone stock forged units of the M4 type, albeit the upper receiver apparently having its rail segments milled off. The ARMS-esque handguard locks into the rifle’s M4-style front sight block and a positively retro flat delta ring, and the standard buffer tube is mated to a Command Arms buttstock. The only seemingly unique thing is the somewhat strange pistol grip, which may be an original Iranian part.

Questions about this rifle abound – Shahryar claims it is a Fateh, but if that’s the case, what happened to the much more radical indigenous Fateh, which was clearly unrelated to the AR-15? Did the Iranians cease development of that weapon, or is “Fateh” a broader name than we had been previously led to believe, which refers to a whole program, not just a type of rifle? Could this even be a deliberate disinformation campaign by the Iranians? Will we see the “first” Fateh again?

Thanks to Shahryar for the tip!

Nathaniel F
Nathaniel F

Nathaniel is a history enthusiast and firearms hobbyist whose primary interest lies in military small arms technological developments beginning with the smokeless powder era. He can be reached via email at nathaniel.f@staff.thefirearmblog.com.

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2 of 94 comments
  • SD SD on Sep 28, 2015

    Is that a Matech buis? Blasphemy.

  • Donald Darr Donald Darr on Oct 01, 2015

    The pistol grip looks like the one that the Chinese had on their copy of our M-16 / AR-15 (Norinco Type CQ). Maybe the Chinese are supplying these to Iran?