The relationship between the United States and Iran has gone from bad to worse and the problem between the two nations is not ending anytime soon. In latest news, more than six US Air Force F-35A Lightning II fighter jets left Al-Dhafra Air Base in the UAE at 2 am Wednesday, as per multiple local Middle Eastern sources, possibly heading straight to respond to Tuesday night’s Iranian attack on American targets in Iraq.
Iran had announced that the deadly attacks are the “official launch” of “Operation Martyr Soleimani” – nation’s military operation intended to take revenge on the United States in retaliation for the last week’s killing of IRGC Quds Force commander Qassem Soleimani.
It should be noted that the warplanes left the UAE just about two minutes after the Ain Al-Asad Air Base came under rocket and missile fire from Iran, and from a local Iranian agency militia in Iraq.
Iran also threatened to attack the United Arab Emirates and Israel, if there is a retaliation to its missile attack against the US forces. “We are warning all American allies, who gave their bases to its terrorist army, that any territory that is the starting point of aggressive acts against Iran will be targeted,” the Guard said, adding that if Iranian soil is bombed then it will target Dubai and Haifa.
Meanwhile, White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham added in a statement to reporters after the attack: “We are aware of the reports of attacks on US facilities in Iraq. The president has been briefed and is monitoring the situation closely and consulting with his national security team.”
It is still not yet clear how the US aims to respond. The Pentagon also issued a statement that reads: “In recent days and in response to Iranian threats and actions, the Department of Defense has taken all appropriate measures to safeguard our personnel and partners. These bases have been on high alert due to indications that the Iranian regime planned to attack our forces and interests in the region.
“As we evaluate the situation and our response, we will take all necessary measures to protect and defend US personnel, partners, and allies in the region.”
There are over 5,000 American troops currently in Iraq, as per Fox News, and the Pentagon has confirmed there is no plan to withdraw at this point of time.
It has been learnt that Ain Al-Asad was one of two bases hosting US troops that were assaulted and a second base near Erbil was also attacked by Iran.
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