The Armed Forces of the Islamic Republic of Iran (Persian: نيروهای مسلح جمهوری اسلامی ايران) include the IRIA (Persian: ارتش جمهوری اسلامی ایران) and the IRGC (Persian: سپاه پاسداران انقلاب اسلامی) and the Police Force (Persian: نيروی انتظامی جمهوری اسلامی ایران).
These forces total about 545,000 active personnel (not including the Police Force and the Army of the Guardians of the Islamic Revolution). All branches of armed forces fall under the command of General Headquarters of Armed Forces (ستاد کل نیروهای مسلح). The Ministry of Defense and Armed Forces Logistics is responsible for planning logistics and funding of the armed forces and is not involved with in-the-field military operational command.
The Iranian Military consists of the Islamic Republic of Iran Army, Islamic Republic of Iran Navy, Islamic Republic of Iran Air Force, and the Iranian Air Defense Force. The regular armed forces have an estimated 545,000 personnel: the Islamic Republic of Iran Army, 465,000 personnel; the Islamic Republic of Iran Navy, 28,000 personnel, and the Islamic Republic of Iran Air Force, 52,000 airmen. Iranian Air Defense Force is a branch split off from the IRIAF.
The Army of the Guardians of the Islamic Revolution, or Revolutionary Guards, has an estimated 120,000 personnel in five branches: Its own Navy, Air Force, and Ground Forces; and the Quds Force (Special Forces)
The Basij is a paramilitary volunteer force controlled by the Islamic Revolutionary Guards. Its membership is a matter of controversy. Iranian sources claim a membership of 12.6 million, including women, of which perhaps 3 million are combat capable. There are a claimed 2,500 battalions of which some are full-time personnel. Globalsecurity.org quotes a 2005 study by the Center for Strategic and International Studies estimating 90,000 active-duty full-time uniformed members, 300,000 reservists, and a total of 11 million men that can be mobilized if need be.
Iran's military was called the Middle East's most powerful by General John Abizaid chief of United States Central Command (U.S. forces' commander in the region). However General Abizaid said he did not include the Israel Defense Forces as they did not fall into his area of operations .