The U.S. launched strikes on Iranian-linked targets in Syria on Thursday in retaliation for a series of drone attacks on American military bases in the region, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said.
“Today, at President Biden’s direction,” Austin said, “U.S. military forces conducted self-defense strikes on two facilities in eastern Syria used by Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and affiliated groups. These precision self-defense strikes are a response to a series of ongoing and mostly unsuccessful attacks against U.S. personnel in Iraq and Syria by Iranian-backed militia groups that began on October 17.”
Austin said, “As a result of these attacks, one U.S. citizen contractor died from a cardiac incident while sheltering in place; 21 U.S. personnel suffered from minor injuries.” All those injured have since returned to duty, he said.”The President has no higher priority than the safety of U.S. personnel,” Austin said, “and he directed today’s action to make clear that the United States will not tolerate such attacks and will defend itself, its personnel, and its interests.”