Iran is responsible for drone attack on US base in Syria

Last week’s drone attack on a military base in southern Syria that houses US forces was likely carried out at Iran’s request. Although the drones used in the attack were not launched from Iran, officials believe Iran provided the resource and encouraged the attack on al-Tanf outpost in Syria. At least five drones loaded with explosive charges were directed towards the base, hitting both the Syrian and US sides of the military installation.

The al-Tanf garrison (ATG) is located in the territory controlled by the Syrian opposition forces in the governorate of Homs located twenty-four kilometers west of the al-Tanf border post in the Syrian desert . The US military has maintained an outpost presence since early 2016 during the US-led intervention into the Syrian Civil War to train anti-Islamic State (IS) fighters from the New Rebel group. Syrian army, which opposed the official government located in Damascus. . This force dissolved, while its remnants reappeared as the Revolutionary Command Army, with ATG as its headquarters.

The presence of the US garrison in Syria remains controversial as the Syrian government in Damascus and the Russian government consider it illegal. The Syrian regime has called for the withdrawal of all foreign forces from Syria.

US and international troops are based in al-Tanf and continue to train Syrian forces as part of the global coalition to defeat ISIS.

Drone attack

Last week’s drone strike was neither fatal nor injured, and this week Pentagon press secretary John Kirby declined to assign responsibility during his Monday briefing with reporters. However, Kirby said US forces have seen similar types of attacks carried out by Shiite militias that receive support from Tehran, The hill reported.

“I’m not going to go into details about this particular attack,” Kirby told reporters. “It was complex, it was deliberate, and luckily… we have no indication at this time that any US servicemen were injured.”

The Associated Press also reported that pro-Iran media said the attack on Tanf was carried out by “allies of Syria” – a possible reference to Iran-backed groups. The drone strike was reportedly carried out in retaliation for an attack days earlier near the historic Syrian city of Palmyra. Israel was blamed for the attack, while US officials also maintained that America was not involved in it.

Tensions between Washington and Tehran have increased, even as the Biden administration announced that international diplomatic efforts to bring Iran back into negotiations to return to a 2015 nuclear deal were at a “critical point.”

Proxy war with Iran

This is the first major Iranian attack on US forces since January 2020, when Tehran launched a barrage of ballistic missiles on the al-Asad air base in Iraq. The attack was carried out in response to the US drone strike earlier this month near Baghdad airport, which resulted in the deaths of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani and Iraqi militia leader Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis.

However, before the January 2020 attack, US and coalition troops were warned of the incoming missiles and were able to take cover. Yet more than 100 US servicemen still suffered traumatic brain injuries from the blasts. Two months after the assault on al-Asad, US fighter jets carried out a retaliatory strike against five sites, targeting members of the Iran-backed Shiite militia suspected of being responsible for the attack in January arugula.

It is not known whether US forces will now retaliate against Iran after last week’s drone attack.

Peter Suciu is a Michigan-based writer who has contributed to over four dozen magazines, newspapers, and websites. He writes regularly on military small arms and is the author of several books on military hairstyles, including A gallery of military hairstyles, which is available on

Picture: Wikimedia Commons

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