Sullivan Says It Is The “Beginning” of U.S. Response to Iran

February 5, 2024

If we continue to see threats and attacks from these militia groups, we will respond to them and we will hold those responsible accountable.

National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan says in response to the the U.S. airstrikes in Iraq and Syria on Friday.

What To Know: On Friday, the United States carried out airstrikes across seven locations in Syria and Iraq, hitting 85 targets. The strikes were conducted as a response to the strike that killed three U.S. servicemembers last week by Iran-backed militants. On Sunday, National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan described the attack by the U.S. as “the beginning, not the end of our response, and that there will be more steps, some seen, some perhaps unseen, all in an effort to send a very clear message that when American forces are attacked, when Americans are killed…we will respond and we will respond forcefully…” He said it is not an open-ended campaign and that “We have a concept of how we intend to respond.”

Bigger Picture: According to U.S. Central Command, “The facilities that were struck included command and control operations centers, intelligence centers, rockets, missiles, unmanned aerial vehicle storage, and logistics and munition supply chain facilities of militia groups and their IRGC sponsors who facilitated attacks against U.S. and Coalition forces.” Sullivan did not yet have a number to report on casualties. Iraq said 16 civilians and 16 members of their state security force were killed. Director of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, Rami Abdulrahman, said the strikes killed 23 people in Syria.

The U.S. and Britain then hit 36 Houthi targets in a second wave of attacks on Saturday and U.S. Central Command said it conducted another strike on Sunday, “in self-defense against a Houthi anti-ship cruise missile prepared to launch against ships in the Red Sea.” 

Read More:

U.S. launches strikes in Iraq, Syria, nearly 40 reported killed (Reuters)

Sullivan vows ‘further action’ after US carries out retaliatory strikes on Iranian-linked militia targets (CNN Politics)

Transcript: National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan on “Face the Nation,” Feb. 4, 2024 (CBS News)

CENTCOM Statement on U.S. Strikes in Iraq and Syria (U.S. Central Command)

US, Britain strike Yemen’s Houthis in a new wave, retaliating for attacks by Iran-backed militants (The Associated Press)

by Sarah Pinkerton,