The strikes were in direct response to the attacks against U.S. and Coalition forces by Iran and Iran-backed groups, including the one in Iraq on November 21, which involved use of close-range ballistic missiles.U.S. Central Command, which oversees the region of conflict that includes the Middle East, on retaliatory strikes that took place on the morning of November 22 against Iranian positions in Iraq.
Why It Matters: Previous strikes against positions connected to Iranian-backed groups took place in Syria – these strikes in Iraq against “facilities” continue to show an escalation of tensions in the region, and comes a day after another exchange of fire between the U.S. and adversaries.
More Context: “On 21 Nov. an AC-130 gunship engaged individuals responsible for launching a missile attack on U.S. and Coalition personnel at Al Assad Airbase, Iraq. The gunship maintained visual confirmation of the individuals from the time of the launch to the time of engagement. This strike resulted in several enemy casualties” (U.S. Central Command).
On Tuesday, Singh said the recent attack against U.S. and coalition personnel in Iraq was conducted “by Iran-backed militias using a close-range ballistic missile,” marking “the first time – since October 17th, when these attacks started on U.S. forces … the first time that this type of munition was used against U.S. forces.” Ballistic missiles are powerful weapons that can potentially carry nuclear warheads.
“U.S. personnel have sustained approximately 62 injuries but this does not include any injuries from last night’s attack as they are still being evaluated,” Singh said on Tuesday. READ MORE HERE
Iran = a U.S.-designated state sponsor of terrorism, funds and supports a variety of terrorist organizations around the world, including Hamas and Hezbollah, as well as “militant” groups through Syria and Iraq.
by Jenna Lee,