U.S. Launches Strikes on Iraq and Syria in Wake of Jordan Drone Attack

Chris Menahan
Feb. 02, 2024

The United States on Friday launched strikes on over 85 targets in Iraq and Syria allegedly linked to "Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) Quds Force and Iran-backed militia groups."

"At 4:00 p.m. (EST) Feb. 02, U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) forces conducted airstrikes in Iraq and Syria against Iranís Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) Quds Force and affiliated militia groups," CENTCOM announced on X. "U.S. military forces struck more than 85 targets, with numerous aircraft to include long-range bombers flown from United States. The airstrikes employed more than 125 precision munitions. The facilities that were struck included command and control operations centers, intelligence centers, rockets, and missiles, and unmanned aerial vehicle storages, and logistics and munition supply chain facilities of militia groups and their IRGC sponsors who facilitated attacks against U.S. and Coalition forces."

Unverified footage is spreading on social media allegedly showing some of the strikes:

From NBC News, "U.S. strikes more than 85 targets in Iraq and Syria in initial barrage of retaliatory attacks":
Syrian state television reported that the strikes killed and wounded people, but it did not specify an exact number of casualties.

Before the strikes, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin had promised a "multitier response" and officials told NBC News that Biden settled on a plan expected to unfold over multiple days, possibly weeks. American forces are expected to hit targets in different countries outside Iran, U.S. officials said.

Even as Biden and his deputies vowed to retaliate, they have added the caveat that Washington does not seek a war with Iran or a wider conflict in the region. Their calibrated statements appeared to indicate that it was unlikely the reprisal strikes would hit targets inside Iran itself.

"We will continue to work to avoid a wider conflict in a region, but we will take all necessary actions to defend the United States, our interests and our people," Austin told reporters at a Pentagon news conference Thursday.

Iran has denied involvement in the drone attack and said it, too, does not seek a direct confrontation with the U.S.
The U.S. and Iran don't want escalation but Israel wants the US to launch a war with Iran and so escalation is what we'll get.

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