In response to an assault in Jordan that resulted in the deaths of three American soldiers, the United States conducted a series of airstrikes on Friday targeting facilities associated with Iran's Revolutionary Guard and its supported militias in both Iraq and Syria.
According to Reuters, over 85 sites were hit by these strikes, marking a significant retaliation by the U.S. and indicating a broader strategy by President Joe Biden's administration against Iran-backed militant activities.
The operations, which did not extend into Iranian territory, utilized B-1 bombers for the attacks and are part of a larger anticipated series of military actions.
This military action targets a wide array of facilities, including those used for command and control, storage of rockets, missiles, drones, and supply chains for logistics and munitions. The operations spanned seven distinct locations across Syria and Iraq, focusing on the Quds Force, a key component of the Revolutionary Guard that operates across the Middle East. The aftermath of the strikes saw reports of secondary explosions, suggesting the destruction of significant militant armaments. The impact on militant casualties, however, remained uncertain.
The Syrian Defense Ministry condemned the U.S. actions as a "blatant air aggression," reporting casualties among both civilians and soldiers, along with damage to infrastructure.
This statement underscored the ministry's stance against the American military presence in Syria and reiterated its commitment to combating terrorism and ending occupation. On the other hand, the Pentagon highlighted the strategic timing of the strikes, acknowledging the potential for civilian casualties due to the nature of the targeted sites.
Iraq's reaction to the airstrikes underscored concerns over sovereignty and regional stability, with warnings about the potential for escalating tensions.
The Iraqi military criticized the strikes as a breach of its sovereignty and cautioned against the destabilizing effects on the nation and broader region. There was no immediate response from Iran, though Iranian state media labeled the U.S. forces involved in the strikes as terrorists, reflecting the heightened tensions between the U.S. and Iran in the wake of these military actions.