As tensions rise in the Middle East, US forces in the region face hostile threats and a series of attacks as the Biden administration increases its support for Israel.
A US Navy warship shot down 15 drones and four cruise missiles on Thursday over the course of nine hours off the coast of Yemen, a larger barrage than previously thought.
The USS Carney, a guided-missile destroyer, was heading south through the Suez Canal in Egypt on Wednesday and was in the northern Red Sea when Thursday’s incidents occurred.
Since the war between Israel and Hamas began on October 7, there have been a few attacks on US positions in the Middle East. The Pentagon has moved warships and aircraft to the area to be ready to provide aid to Israel.
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Additionally, 2,000 US troops have been placed on heightened alert and are ready to deploy if needed. The troops are likely Army and Air Force personnel and will be able to respond quickly, particularly to provide intelligence and surveillance, transport and medical assistance.
The attack on US military personnel coincides with protests and riots near US embassies in the Middle East. Here’s a rundown of the attacks against US forces in recent days.
Wednesday, Oct. 18
US forces intercepted two one-way attack drones Al Asad Air Base, Iraq just west of Baghdad where US troops are stationed. One drone was destroyed and the other was damaged, US Central Command said.
Coalition forces were slightly injured and the base was damaged.
Elsewhere in Iraq, US forces at al-Harir Air Base destroyed a drone. No injuries were reported.
“Our missiles, drones and special forces are ready to deliver quality strikes to the American enemy in its bases and disrupt its interests if it intervenes in this battle,” said Ahmad “Abu Hussein” al-Hamidawi, head of the Iraqi Kataib Hezbollah militia. , said in a statement.
Thursday, Oct. 19
The USS Carney was in the northern Red Sea when it shot down four cruise missiles and 15 drones launched by Iran-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen. No injuries or damage were reported.
The Ministry of Defense initially said the warship shot down three land-attack cruise missiles and “several” drones before the full scale of the attack became known.
A defense official said the cruise missiles and drones were shot down with SM-2 surface-to-air missiles and that the missiles were clearly headed for Israel. A US official said they did not believe the missiles – which were shot down over the water – were aimed at the US warship.
On the same day, the Al Tanf Garrison military base in southern Syria where US troops are stationed was targeted by two drones. US and coalition forces attacked and destroyed one drone while the other hit the base.
US troops maintained a presence at the base for many years to train Syrian allies and monitor the activity of Islamic State militants.
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Friday, Oct. 20
Two rockets were fired at the Baghdad Diplomatic Support Center in Iraq near Baghdad International Airport around 2:50 am.
One missile was intercepted by an anti-missile system and the other hit an empty storage facility. No casualties were reported.
Fox News’ Liz Friden, Greg Wehner and The Associated Press contributed to this report.