Recent photographs have suggested that the Iranian Army (not the Revolutionary Guard Corps) might be introducing a Designated Marksman Rifle variant of the internally manufactured, H&K license produced Defense Industries Organization G3 currently in service with the Iranian Army. The rifle on display was at a demonstration put on by the Iranian 16th Armored Division based in Qazvin province during a visit by Land Forces Commander General Heydari. What appears to be a Weaver inspired rail is bolted to the top of the receiver with H&K patterned scope mounts. Although not actually mounted to the rifle at the display, a scope is mounted to the rifle in the poster photograph included on the table it is being displayed upon.
The scope is a variable power optic with the nomenclature of “Ghadir-4”, or “۴-غدیر” in Farsi. Ghadir is in reference to Ghadir Khumm, an event particularly important to Iranian Shi’as because this was where Imam-Ali was seen by their scholars as proclaimed successor to the Prophet Mohammad by the Prophet himself. This isn’t odd at all because equipment nomenclature in the Islamic Republic is usually named after historically, religiously significant events, or even previous defense items such as the Zulfiqar rifle named after Imam-Ali’s double-bladed sword. Using this name for a rifle scope has two connotations that pique our interest. First of all, giving it a name at all might be evidence that the scope has reached official adoption and issue because relatively speaking, it is a very insignificant and cheaply produced defense item. However on that same token, why Iran’s Defense Industries Organization (the most likely manufacturer) would commission a scope based on an extremely religiously significant event is somewhat perplexing.
According to specifications, the Ghadir-4 is a 3-12x variable optic with a 50mm objective lens. It has traditional turrets for windage, elevation, parallax adjustment, and what is most likely an illuminated reticule just behind the parallax adjustment knob. In the image provided, we aren’t able to get a good look at the variable power adjustment knob, but it does appear to be there. In fact, upon closer examination of the scope, it appears it might be an Iranian attempt at copying the Schmidt & Bender 3-12x50mm PM II with illuminated reticule. They share similar characteristics such as the iconic white circle with the center dot that S&B uses, a similar overall length, and the “popped” turret within the elevation turret that allows for further adjustments.
It also appears that the Ghadir-4 has previously entered service with the Iranian special operations, in a setup known as the “G1”, which could be for the rifle or the scope. Note the welded M1913 Picatinny rail attached to the receiver of the G3 rifle. Also note the longer barrel, lack of a flash hider, and shorter magazine, making this setup similar in concept to a PSG1 precision rifle.
Much thanks to Babak for forwarding the photographs!