U.S. Military Conducts ‘Self-Defense Strike’ In Syria As Attacks Against Service Members Increase


The U.S. military carried out a “self-defense strike” on a weapons depot in eastern Syria used by Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and affiliates, according to a Pentagon statement released Wednesday, following more than 30 attacks targeting U.S. military bases.

Key Facts

The “precision” strike was carried out by two F-15 fighter jets, according to the statement, which said President Joe Biden directed the action to keep U.S. service members safe following recent attacks that have already injured at least 45, resulting in traumatic brain injuries for some, NBC News reported.

The Pentagon said the strike was conducted in response to attacks against U.S. service members in Iraq and Syria recently, which have numbered 38 since Oct. 17 and been primarily carried out through drones and rocket barrages.

The U.S. military is “fully prepared” to take further measures to protect its bases and members, according to the statement.

Big Number

About 24. That’s how many service members are reportedly being monitored by the military after possibly experiencing traumatic brain injuries, according to NBC News.

Key Background

The attacks against U.S. forces began after Hamas struck Israel in early October in an attack that killed more than 1,000 and has since escalated to high death tolls in the Gaza Strip. Around 1,400 people have died in Israel, according to the Associated Press. The Palestinian death toll surpassed 10,000 earlier this week, AP reported, citing the Hamas-controlled Gaza Health Ministry. CNN reported that Iran is trying to capitalize on regional backlash to the U.S.’ support of Israel, though defense officials have not drawn a correlation between the attacks against the U.S. and the Israel-Hamas conflict.

Further Reading

U.S. strikes eastern Syria in response to attacks, defense secretary says (NBC News)

US carries out airstrikes in eastern Syria targeting IRGC and Iranian-backed groups weapons storage facility (CNN)

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