US Strikes Iranian Military Targets in Iraq and Syria

President Joe Biden ordered strikes on the IRGC and Shia militias in response to the killing of three US soldiers in Jordan last week

The White House started its military operations against Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) Quds Force and Shia militias in Iraq and Syria on Friday. The Biden administration pledged to strike Iranian targets in the Middle East after three US soldiers were killed by a drone attack in Jordan last week. The White House signaled that the campaign against Iran and Shia militias will involve several rounds of strikes.

US Central Command (CENTCOM) reported its forces dropped over 100 bombs on 85 targets. “CENTCOM forces conducted airstrikes in Iraq and Syria against Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) Quds Force and affiliated militia groups,” according to the statement posted on X. “US military forces struck more than 85 targets, with numerous aircraft to include long-range bombers flown from United States. The airstrikes employed more than 125 precision munitions.”

Earlier this week, the Biden administration leaked to the media that it planned to conduct strikes on Iranian military targets outside of Iran and that the operations would take place in several waves of strikes.

CENTCOM claims the targets were hit in response to attacks on US soldiers in Iraq and Syria. “The facilities that were struck included command and control operations centers, intelligence centers, rockets, and missiles, and unmanned aerial vehicle storages, and logistics and munition supply chain facilities of militia groups and their IRGC sponsors who facilitated attacks against US and Coalition forces,” the statement added.

However, Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin admitted that the US could not directly link Iran to the drone attack on US soldiers in Jordan. When asked by a reporter how much Iran knew about the Jordan drone attack or if it was operationally involved, Austin said, “You know, we believe that this was done by an element of what is known as the Axis of Resistance, and these are Iranian proxy groups. And how much Iran knew or didn’t know, we — we don’t know, but it really doesn’t matter because Iran sponsors these groups.”

US forces in the Middle East have been attacked over 150 times by a group known as the Islamic Resistance of Iraq. The militants say they are targeting American soldiers over Washington’s support for the Israeli genocide in Gaza.

Iran says it is not directing the attacks against American forces in the Middle East. On Monday, Pentagon Press Secretary Sabrina Singh admitted Washington had no evidence that Iran directed the attack.

Earlier this week, Iran and Iraq worked to de-escalate the situation. Kataib Hezbollah, a core member of the Islamic Resistance of Iraq, announced it would cease attacks on Americans in the region at the request of Tehran and Baghdad. Additionally, Reuters reported that the IRGC was working to remove its forces from Iraq and Syria to reduce tensions.

Still, the Biden administration pressed ahead with strikes that could lead to a wider war in the Middle East. In January, the New York Times spoke with American officials who were concerned that it was only “a matter of time” before a US soldier was killed in the Middle East. The official feared that Biden would not “let such attacks go without a response” and that “the conflict in the region might be getting worse, not better.”

The White House has not sought approval from Congress for its bombing campaigns in the Middle East. Israel’s brutal war in Gaza has provoked a rash of retaliation against Israeli and American assets in the region.

In Yemen, CENTCOM has conducted 11 waves of bombing attempting to break the Houthis blockade of Israeli-linked shipping. A growing number of Congressmen on both sides of the aisle have called on the Biden administration to seek authorization before conducting further strikes. Before Biden bombed Iraq and Syria, Congressman Thomas Massie (R-KY) threatened to introduce articles of impeachment against the president if he bombed Iran.

Kyle Anzalone is the opinion editor of, news editor of the Libertarian Institute, and co-host of Conflicts of Interest.