Iran Under Fire After U.S. Soldiers Deaths—And Connections To Hamas, Hezbollah And the Houthisthedigitalchaps



The Biden administration blamed a drone strike that killed three American troops stationed in Jordan on “Iran-backed militant groups”—which the government says the Islamic Republic has used for years to fight a proxy conflict with the U.S. and its allies in the Middle East, through a series of militant groups.

Key Facts

Hamas, the Palestinian Islamist organization that has controlled the Gaza Strip since 2006, reportedly received weapons and training from Iran before launching the attacks on Israel on October 7, which plunged the region into a prolonged war.

Hezbollah, whose name means “Party of God” in Arabic, was originally backed by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps during the Lebanese Civil War and the Israeli invasion of the country in the 1980s, has become a dominant political movement in the country representing the Shia Muslim minority in the south, and the U.S. believes it has in recent years received hundreds of millions in funding from Iran.

The Houthi movement, a Shia Islamist militant group based in northern Yemen, is believed to be primarily funded by Iran.

The Houthis have remained in control of most of northern Yemen, including the capital of Sana’a, where the group began launching missile and drone strikes against Israel-linked cargo ships in the Red Sea, in an effort to support Hamas in their ongoing conflict.


On Sunday, Iran also announced it had successfully launched three satellites into low-earth orbit, which the U.S. believes it can use to more accurately target intercontinental ballistic missiles. Iran’s ballistic missile program was formerly sanctioned by the U.N., but the measures expired in October. The launch was condemned by France, Germany and the United Kingdom, who said they had “longstanding concerns over Iran’s activity related to ballistic missile technologies that are capable of delivering nuclear weapons.”

News Peg

An aerial drone struck a U.S. base known as Tower 22 in northeastern Jordan on Sunday, killing at least three servicemembers, according to the White House, and injuring at least 34 more, Reuters reported. Iranian-aligned militant groups, including Khataib Hezbollah in Iraq and the Houthis in Yemen, have launched dozens of drone and missile strikes against U.S. military positions since the Israel-Gaza war began in October. The Biden administration immediately blamed the strikes on “Iran-backed militant groups operating in Syria and Iraq,” and promised to “hold all those responsible to account at a time and in a manner [of]

our choosing.” The White House immediately faced criticism from congressional Republicans, who called for unprecedented direct strikes against the Islamic Republic. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), called on the administration to “hit Iran now. Hit them hard,” while Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) simply posted the message: “Target Tehran.” The senator later clarified that he was calling to target the Revolutionary Guard Corps and the Quds Force.

Key Background

The U.S. has had a unstable relationship with the Islamic Republic of Iran since the country’s founding. In 1979, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi Shah, the monarch of Iran and a close U.S. ally, was overthrown in a revolution. The Iranian revolution quickly installed a theocratic government and declared itself a the Islamic Republic. The newly formed government immediately came into conflict with the United States during the Iran Hostage Crisis, which saw a student group hold 52 Americans hostage for 444 days after the U.S. refused to extradite the Shah back to the country. Although relations between the two countries began to warm after the Obama administration helped negotiate the Iranian nuclear framework in 2015, which would have allowed the nation to develop a nuclear energy program but restricted its ability to develop any nuclear weapons. Former President Trump withdrew from the deal in 2018. Tensions increased severely in January 2020, when Trump ordered the assassination of General Qasem Soleimani, the commander of the Quds Force, while he was in Iraq.

Further Reading

MORE FROM FORBESAmerican Helicopters Sink Red Sea Houthi Boats, Killing 10: Here’s When The U.S. Has Been Attacked Since War Began In GazaMORE FROM FORBESWhat Is Kataib Hezbollah? Iran-Linked Group Blamed For Drone Attack On American Bases-Leading To U.S. Strikes.