In the wake of a recent U.S. offensive against an Iranian facility in Syria, American forces have experienced four separate attacks from groups supported by Iran in the Middle East. This escalation comes after the eruption of a large-scale conflict between Israel and the Palestinian militant organization Hamas.
Sabrina Singh, the Pentagon’s deputy press secretary, confirmed on Thursday that since October 17, U.S. forces have been targeted a total of 46 times. Of these incidents, 24 took place in Iraq and 22 in Syria, all involving explosive drones and rockets.
Singh issued a stern warning to the attackers, stating that the U.S. would not hesitate to react if these offensives against American personnel persisted.
Despite the frequency of attacks, the Pentagon reports that injuries among soldiers have been relatively minor. All 56 troops injured have since returned to active duty.
The surge of attacks comes in the aftermath of a U.S. airstrike this past Wednesday. The operation successfully neutralized a critical weapons facility in Syria that was under the control of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and Iranian-aligned militants.
The American airstrike inflicted substantial damage, rendering the storage facility essentially non-operational.
This decisive action by the U.S. followed an incident where the Houthis, a group backed by Iran, shot down an MQ-9 Reaper drone off Yemen’s coast.
While American presence in the Middle East has increased following the Israel-Hamas war, the ongoing violence has provoked outrage among lawmakers in Washington. Republican representatives criticized the Biden administration for its inability to halt the attacks.
Rep. Mike Rogers, chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, emphasized that tolerance for attacks on U.S. service members, assets, and interests must be zero. He suggested that the recent strike on the storage facility should not be the end of U.S. retaliation.
Despite the mounting tension, Singh assured that the U.S. aims for proportionate responses, seeking to contain the conflict rather than escalate it. The primary objective, she stated, is to prevent the Israel-Hamas conflict from spreading.
“We intend to contain the conflict between Israel and Hamas, and thus far, we have managed to prevent its expansion,” she affirmed. “We are dispatching a message that appears to have been received.”