Here’s When The U.S. Has Been Attacked Since War Began In Gazathedigitalchaps



U.S. helicopters sank three Houthi boats in the Red Sea, killing 10, on Sunday after Iran-backed Houthi rebels attacked a shipping vessel and the responding helicopters, as attacks on U.S. military positions in the Middle East continue to escalate in the wake of Israel’s war with Hamas and the Biden administration looks to avoid a wider conflict in the region.


Dec. 31U.S. Navy helicopters in the Red Sea sank three boats operated by Houthi rebels on Sunday, killing all 10 crew members on the boats, according to Houthi officials, after Houthi fighters attacked a commercial freighter in the Red Sea as well as the Navy helicopters responding to the ship’s distress call, the Defense department said.

Dec. 26U.S. forces shot down 12 attack drones, three anti-ship missiles and two land attack cruise missiles fired over the Red Sea by Houthi rebels in Yemen, according to U.S. military officials, hours after Houthi rebels claimed responsibility for a missile launch on a Mediterranean Shipping Company cargo ship in the Red Sea (no injuries were reported in the attack on the shipping vessel).

Dec. 25A one-way drone launched by Kataib Hezbollah, an Iran-aligned Shia militia in Iraq, injured three U.S. soldiers at al-Harir airbase, prompting retaliatory airstrikes in Iraq against drone facilities used by the group.

Dec. 8Rockets were fired near the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, located in the area known as the Green Zone, striking the facility’s gate but causing no serious damage or injuries.

Nov. 12U.S. forces in the al-Omar oil field and at the al-Shaddadi military base in northeastern Syria were attacked with drones and rockets three times, military sources confirmed to Reuters.

Nov. 8The U.S. responded to the ongoing strikes with more airstrikes on weapons storage facilities in northeastern Syria used by Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps, the Defense Department announced.

Nov. 8Drones struck both Ain al-Asad and the al-Harir airbase in Erbil, while an improvised explosive device damaged a military vehicle near Mosul, sources told the Guardian.

Oct. 26U.S. forces conducted “self-defense strikes” on two bases in eastern Syria that the Defense Department said were used by Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps and their proxy groups in the country.

Oct. 19Another drone struck Ain al-Asad, and a U.S. contractor died after going into cardiac arrest while sheltering in place.

Oct. 17A series of “mostly unsuccessful” drone strikes hit the U.S. Ain al-Asad airbase and al-Tanf military base in western Iraq—a total of 21 personnel at the bases suffered minor injuries and all returned to active duty days later, the Defense Department confirmed.

Crucial Quote

White House National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby told ABC’s “Good Morning America” on Sunday the U.S. is “not looking for a conflict with the Houthis” and that “the best outcome here would be for the Houthis to stop these attacks.”

Key Background

The U.S. troops in Iraq and Syria are the remains of the larger mission launched in 2014 to combat the Islamic State’s rise to power in the region. The troops, about 900 in Syria and about 2,500 in Iraq, remained in the countries as a deterrent against the radical Islamist group. U.S. troops were also stationed in Iraq from 2003 to 2011. At the war’s peak in 2011, approximately 98,000 U.S. troops were stationed in the country, according to the Defense Department. However, the remaining troops have now become targets for militant groups in both countries supported by Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps. The attacks have increased since the outbreak of the war between Israel and Hamas, who are also allied with Iran, in October. On Dec. 7, Deputy Press Secretary Sabrina Singh estimated there had been about 78 total attacks, primarily by rockets and one-way drones, on U.S. troops in Iraq and Syria—leading to 66 injuries. However, U.S. officials have distanced the operations in Iraq and Syria from the ongoing war in the Gaza Strip. “They are separate and distinct from the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas, and do not constitute a shift in our approach to the Israel-Hamas conflict,” Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said in October. “We continue to urge all state and non-state entities not to take action that would escalate into a broader regional conflict.”


Elsewhere in the Middle East, the Houthi movement in Yemen began a campaign of drone and rocket attacks on cargo ships in the Red Sea. The Houthis are a Shia militia group that controls most of northern Yemen and are aligned with Iran. They began the campaign to support their mutual ally Hamas after the Israeli military operation began in the region in October. The Houthi’s campaign began by targeting ships with purported links to Israeli companies or owners, as well as ships headed to Israel’s major ports in Eilat and Haifa. On December 3, the USS Carney, a destroyer in the Red Sea, shot down four missiles and drones fired from Yemen. At least one drone was launched towards the Navy vessel, but the military could not confirm if it was the intended target, and no damage or injuries were reported by the crew onboard. Last week, the U.S. announced Operation Prosperity Guardian, a coalition of nine countries designed to act as a “highway patrol” on the Red Sea and the Suez Canal—an important route for world trade. U.S. Central Command confirmed that 17 missiles and drones fired from Yemen were shot down by the U.S. Navy on Tuesday.

Further Reading

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