(RightWing.org) – United States Military forces have operated inside Syria since 2015 under previous Authorizations for the Use of Military Force. US efforts within the country have focused on defeating the Islamic State, otherwise known as ISIL, ISIS, and Daesh. Most recently, unknown elements targeted a US military base in the country with rocket fire.
On January 4, the US Central Command (USCENTCOM) issued a press release disclosing that two rockets targeted US-led coalition forces at a support facility in northeastern Syria at about 9:00 a.m. local time (1:00 a.m. Eastern Standard). Additionally, SDF troops located an additional unfired rocket at the scene. The USCENTCOM notice reported no injuries or resulting damage to coalition property or the Mission Support Site Conoco.
Two rockets targeted Coalition Forces in northeast Syria this morning. pic.twitter.com/uOCwSJpMwi
— U.S. Central Command (@CENTCOM) January 4, 2023
While the group behind the attack remains unknown, news reports pointed out that the rocket strikes occurred one day after the anniversary of the 2020 assassination of the head of Iran’s elite Quds Force, General Qasem Soleimani, during a US drone strike near Baghdad International Airport.
US-Led Efforts in Syria
Former President Donald Trump announced the defeat of ISIS in a December 2018 clip on his Twitter account and said it was time to start bringing American troops home. He initiated a withdrawal of troops from Syria the following year but left a residual force in the country.
After historic victories against ISIS, it’s time to bring our great young people home! pic.twitter.com/xoNjFzQFTp
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 19, 2018
An April 2022 report by the Congressional Research Service on Syria and US policy characterized the current situation as a “protracted stalemate.” It indicated that roughly 900 US troops remain in the country to support counter-ISIS operations alongside elements of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).
The Biden Administration identified four policy priorities to achieve a political resolution to the ongoing conflict in Syria envisioned by the United Nations Security Council.
- Maintaining the military campaign against ISIS
- Supporting Syrian ceasefires
- Increasing access to humanitarian aid
- Pushing for accountability, respect for international law, and promoting human rights
As of January 5, President Joe Biden and the White House have remained silent on the rocket attack.
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