Three one-way attack drones targeted the United States’ al-Tanf garrison in southern Syria on Friday morning, injuring two members of a US-backed Syrian militia, the US military said.
Two of the incoming drones were shot down by the US-led coalition, while a third struck the compound at al-Tanf, injuring two members of the Syrian Free Army militia. The injured fighters were given medical attention, US Central Command said in a statement.
Al-Tanf has been described as “Strategic Baggage” and represents the US military at its worst and most lawless. Without authorization from Congress, or the UN, and without invitation from the Syrian government, the 200-man garrison has remained from the military operation to topple the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant, perched along a key highway between Baghdad and Damascus.
In the statement, CENTCOM spokesperson Col. Joe Buccino said that “attacks of this kind are unacceptable—they place our troops and our partners at risk and jeopardize the fight against ISIS”.
One can only scratch their head.
Attacks against troops are normal during war, and deploying troops to a conflict area necessitates putting them at risk. As for jeopardizing the fight against ISIS, many previous high-ranking US officials have described the fight against ISIS as having been won.
“Israeli fighter aircraft have used the corridor along the Jordan-Syria border and the airspace around al-Tanf to penetrate Syrian airspace for strikes against Iran-backed militias, drawing accusations from the Syrian regime in the past,” al-Monitor reports.
The drones are the third attack on the base across the last two years.
Currently, al-Tanf has not issued any blame, nor suggested any particular culprits, but the past two times have been blamed on “Iran-backed militias”.
It requires the omission of history to describe the accused actors merely as Iran-backed militias. They were groups who did most of the fighting against ISIS on the ground between 2017 and 2018. The US Air Force flew as their strategic cover during the operations, and they were inducted into the Iraqi military following the conflict.
On September 3rd, 2022, WaL reported in a feature that the Pentagon expanded from their border outpost at al-Tanf to establish three new military facilities in Syria’s eastern oil fields.
A large conflict between the US-allied Kurdish military, the SDF, and the Syrian government, had broken out nearby, with the Syrians receiving aid from the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps. Currently Turkish, Russian, Syrian, Iranian, and Israeli militaries are active in the area, and this has drawn the US to expand their presence there.
As to who launched these particular drones, with all the entities large and small active in the region, there’s no limit to the number of suspects. Syria has been so completely awash with money and guns over the last decade, with dozens of militia and extremist groups active between military units. Wal