U.S. Retaliatory Strikes Hit Iran-Linked Targets in Syria and Iraq Following Deadly Drone Attack

US retaliatory

In a decisive response to a deadly drone attack on an American base in Jordan, the United States launched targeted air strikes against Iranian forces and allied militias in Iraq and Syria. President Joe Biden affirmed the retaliatory actions and signaled a commitment to continued responses “at times and places of our choosing.” The drone attack on the American base had been attributed to forces backed by Iran, prompting the U.S. strikes. Despite tensions, both Washington and Tehran appeared to exercise restraint, avoiding direct strikes within Iran’s territory.

The U.S. Central Command revealed that the airstrikes specifically targeted the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) Quds Force and affiliated militia groups. The operation involved American forces, including long-range bombers flown from the United States, and hit over 85 targets. Utilizing more than 125 precision munitions, the strikes aimed at command and control centers, intelligence facilities, as well as rocket, missile, and drone storage sites linked to militia groups and their IRGC sponsors. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported at least 18 pro-Iran fighters killed in Syria’s eastern region as a result of the strikes.

President Biden, in a statement, emphasized the U.S. stance of not seeking conflict in the Middle East or anywhere else globally. However, he underscored the nation’s commitment to respond to any harm inflicted on Americans, stating, “If you harm an American, we will respond.”

The Iraqi government condemned the strikes as a violation of sovereignty, anticipating disastrous consequences for Iraq’s security and regional stability. General Yehia Rasool, spokesman for Iraq’s prime minister, expressed concern over the impact of the strikes and reiterated Iraq’s call for the departure of international troops, following a previous U.S. strike in Baghdad. Prime Minister Mohamed Shia al-Sudani has been vocal about urging the withdrawal of foreign forces from Iraq.

U.S. National Security Council spokesman John Kirby clarified that the U.S. had informed the Iraqi government prior to the strikes. However, details about Baghdad’s response were not provided. The move to notify the Iraqi government aimed at addressing concerns about sovereignty violations and potential repercussions.

The recent developments reflect the delicate balance in the region, where geopolitical tensions have the potential to escalate into broader conflicts. The U.S. retaliation underscores its commitment to protecting its interests and personnel while attempting to manage the situation without plunging into an all-out war with Iran. As the situation unfolds, the international community watches closely, concerned about the implications for regional stability and the broader geopolitical landscape.

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