The United States responds to targets linked to Iran: Who and where will it strike? | News

The United States has agreed Plan strikes The United States has launched attacks in Iraq and Syria against multiple targets, including Iranian personnel and facilities, CBS News reported Thursday, citing US officials.

President Joe Biden said Tuesday he has decided how to respond to A Drone attack in northeastern Jordan near the Syrian border last Sunday, killing three US service members and wounding more than 40 others.

Sunday’s attack was the first to result in the loss of American lives during the war between Israel and Hamas.

Here is what is known about the American plans:

Where does the United States plan to strike?

The United States plans to respond to the drone attack on the United States Tower base 22 Near the border between Syria and Jordan by targeting Iranian individuals and facilities inside the two countries.

The Islamic Resistance in Iraq, which is believed to include several groups armed, funded and trained by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, claimed responsibility for Sunday’s attack on the base.

But on Wednesday, Kataib Hezbollah, the strongest element of the force, Announce Cessation of hostilities against American forces. Iran itself denied any role in the attack.

However, according to US officials cited by the CBS report, the United States plans to proceed with its own air strikes over several days. The timing of its launch is likely to be affected by weather conditions.

US officials were quoted as saying, “The United States has the ability to conduct strikes in bad weather but prefers to have a better view of selected targets as a precaution against inadvertently striking civilians who might stray into the area at the last minute.”

Hardline Republican officials in the United States have called for this Direct strikes on Iran But this latest plan appears to be aimed at avoiding any direct attack inside the country.

Houthi protest
Houthi supporters protest US-led airstrikes on Friday, January 12, 2024, in Sanaa, Yemen (AP Photo)

What did the US Secretary of Defense say?

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin told reporters Thursday that the United States will not tolerate attacks on American forces.

This was Austin’s first press conference after undergoing surgery for prostate cancer. During the press conference, he apologized for not disclosing his hospitalization. Health-related questions dominated the session, during which he said he also apologized to President Biden for not informing him of his diagnosis.

But Austin also focused on the conflict in the Middle East. Starting with the drone attack, he said the group behind the attack would be held responsible.

“I don’t think opponents have a one-thing mentality, so they have a lot of capabilities, and I have much more than that,” he said. “We will do what is necessary to protect our forces.”

“This is a dangerous moment in the Middle East,” Austin added.

He added: “We will continue to work to avoid a broader conflict in the region, but we will take all necessary measures to defend the United States, our interests, and our people, and we will respond when we choose, where we choose, and how we choose.” “

Although Iran denied involvement, Austin said: “We do not know the extent to which Iran knew or did not know.” “But it doesn’t really matter because Iran sponsors these groups.”

Since the beginning of the war between Israel and Gaza, the Pentagon has intensified its military presence in the region. In mid-December, the United States reportedly had 19 American warships in the region.

Austin ordered the Ford – the Navy’s newest aircraft carrier – and its strike group to sail to the eastern Mediterranean on October 8, the day after the Hamas attack that sparked the war.

The Ford was returned to the United States on January 17, as the United States “reevaluates its global force requirements,” the US Navy’s 6th Fleet announced in a statement. With Ford’s departure, the USS Eisenhower became the US aircraft carrier in the region.

Austin also touched on the actions of the Houthis, who say they are targeting ships linked to Israel in the Red Sea in protest against the Israeli escalation. Aggression in Gaza. Houthi attacks on ships It crashed International trade along a route accounts for about 15 percent of global shipping traffic and 12 percent of world trade.

Interactive - Red Sea and Bab al-Mandab trade

“(They) continue to do some things that are absolutely irresponsible and illegal, and so our goal is to make sure that we continue to take away the ability from the Houthis to do what they’ve been doing,” Austin said.

When Al Jazeera asked him whether he had done enough to pressure Israel to avoid killing civilians in Gaza, where the death toll exceeded 27000 Since October, Austin has said: “We talked to them (Israel) about this weeks ago, and they said they would do it, and they are doing it, but I will continue to stress — and I know Secretary Blinken and President Biden will continue to stress — the importance of addressing the issue of the Palestinian people.” .

He added: “It is critical, and as you know, we are doing more, but we are not doing enough.”

How did tensions reach this point?

Since the outbreak of war between Israel and Hamas on October 7, Iranian-backed groups have struck US bases in Iraq and Syria at least 166 times with rockets, missiles and unidirectional attack drones, leading to about six US counterstrikes on the group’s facilities. In both countries.

The Houthis first fired missiles and drones into southern Israel — also in protest against the war on Gaza — in October, and as Tel Aviv continues to resist international calls for a ceasefire, they have launched a massive They intensified their strikes. The US military also carried out air strikes targeting the Houthi rebels in Yemen.

However, while Tehran says it supports the Houthis politically, it denies sending weapons to the group.

Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Ali Bagheri: “The (Houthi) resistance has its tools… and acts according to its decisions and capabilities.” he said in December.

In the past few days, the United States has hinted that strikes against Iranian targets are imminent.

The threat of retaliation for Sunday’s drone strike on the US base in Jordan prompted some groups to declare a cessation of hostilities. But as of Thursday, according to US Central Command, Houthi rebels in Yemen were still attacking ships and fired a ballistic missile at a Liberian-flagged container ship in the Red Sea. But the Houthis did not claim responsibility for this attack.

How did Iran respond to the threat of American strikes?

Both Iran and the United States had previously said that they wanted to avoid escalating the military repercussions of the Israeli war on Gaza.

While Iran appears reluctant to be drawn into the conflict over Gaza, Hossein Salami, the supreme commander of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, warned that Tehran would respond to any US strikes.

But citing unnamed sources, Reuters also reported on Thursday that the Iranian Revolutionary Guard reduced the deployment of its senior officers in Syria after Israeli air strikes in an attempt to avoid being drawn directly into the conflict.

(Marks for translation) News (R) Middle East

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