In a sweeping series of airstrikes on Friday in Syria and Iraq, the US successfully destroyed or damaged 84 out of 85 targets, according to two US defense officials. The operations targeted facilities and weapons used by Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and Iran-backed militias in response to a drone attack in Jordan that killed three US service members.
The preliminary battlefield damage assessment revealed that all but one of the targets were either destroyed or functionally damaged. President Joe Biden stated that the strikes are effective in deterring and disrupting militant groups’ operations in the region. There are no indications of Iranian casualties, according to the officials.
The strikes marked the first time the US simultaneously carried out operations in both Iraq and Syria. Lt. Gen. Douglas Sims, the director of the Joint Staff, noted that the targets were selected with the expectation of casualties associated with individuals inside those facilities.
The Biden administration faced criticism for the timing of its response, but officials explained that suitable weather conditions for the operation weren’t present until Friday night. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and President Biden emphasized that the strikes were just the beginning of the US response. National security adviser Jake Sullivan confirmed that more steps would follow.
Since the US strikes, there was an attack on Saturday against US forces at Mission Support Site Euphrates, with two rockets launched at the Conoco oil fields. Fortunately, no injuries or damage were reported in the attack.