Head of U.S. forces in the Middle East says an Iranian-backed militia likely launched the attack that wounded an additional dozen coalition troops; national security correspondent Jennifer Griffin reports from the Pentagon.
The U.S. military launched multiple strikes using coalition warplanes targeting multiple bases used by Iranian-backed Shia militias believed to be behind the rocket attack on Camp Taji, Iraq, the day before that killed two Americans and one British soldier, a senior U.S. military source told Fox News.
The launch began after 1 a.m. Baghdad time.
The U.S. military strike was “proportional,” according to the U.S. military source, and hit multiple bases used by the Kata’eb Hezbollah, the Iranian-backed militia that fired 30 Katyusha rockets yesterday at the Taji Base, which housed American and British troops. Of the 12 troops wounded yesterday, five are in serious condition.
“The U.S. does not want to escalate the conflict with Iran,” the U.S. military source told Fox News, but wanted to send a deterrent message, according to a message telegraphed by the Defense Secretary and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs during a briefing to Pentagon press earlier Thursday. President Trump authorized the strike earlier in the day.
The U.S. has two aircraft carriers in the region: USS Harry S Truman in the Arabian Sea and USS Dwight D Eisenhower in the Red Sea. But these strikes did not involve Tomahawk cruise missiles, Fox News is told, just multiple aircraft, but it is not clear what jets were used and from which bases they launched.
The U.S. Air Force keeps dozens of fighter jets in Qatar and the UAE and B1 bombers in Saudi Arabia.