First American casualties in the Middle East since the start of the war in Gaza increase the risk of conflict escalation.
With potential repercussions on the American election campaign, where Donald Trump hammers that Joe Biden “is dragging us into another war”. Three American soldiers died in a nighttime drone attack on a US position in north-eastern Jordan, near the border with Syria, while 34 others were injured. A spokesperson for the Amman government, speaking on his country’s public television, claimed that the attack did not take place on Jordanian soil but in Syria, targeting the American base in Al-Tanf. But the Pentagon insists on his version.
Iran denies being involved in the attack of drones cost the lives of three US soldiers in Jordan yesterday. “These accusations – said the spokesperson of the Foreign Ministry, Nasser Kanaani, quoted by the Irna agency – are made with a political objective aimed at overturning the reality of the region”.
The Wall Street Journal clarifies: Tower 22 was hit, a small US outpost in Jordan near the Al-Tanf base, which however is located across the border, in southwestern Syria, where American forces collaborate with partners locals against ISIS. “We are still gathering information on this attack, but we know that it was carried out by Iranian-backed radical militant groups operating in Syria and Iraq,” Biden accused in a note released by the White House, after being briefed by his team to national security. The commander in chief promised retaliation in some way: “Have no doubts: we will hold all those responsible to account, at the time and in the way we choose.” Then he expressed his condolences and paid tribute to the victims: “Today the heart of America is heavy… Jill and I join the families and friends of our fallen, and Americans across the country, in mourning the loss of these warriors in this despicable and completely unjust attack. These soldiers embodied the best of our nation: unwavering in their courage, unyielding in their duty, uncompromising in their commitment to our country, risking their own safety for that of their compatriots and our allies and partners with whom we fight terrorism. It is a fight that we will not stop”https://gazzettadelsud.it/articoli/mondo/2024/01/29/colpita-una-base-usa-in- jordan-at-the-border-with-syria-three-american-soldiers-killed-and-25-wounded-iran-foreigners-3d794cbc-2ed1-42a3-968a-68ccbe13d0e6/.”The three American soldiers we lost were patriots in the highest sense and their extreme sacrifice will not be forgotten by our nation”, underlined Biden not without a hint of controversy, in contrast to the attackers of the Capitol who Trump continues to call “patriots”.
It is also the first attack since the start of the war in Gaza on US troops in Jordan, a key ally in the Middle East (with a crucial role also in Jerusalem for its supervision of the holy places), where around 3000 American soldiers are stationed. There is therefore the risk of an escalation and widening of the conflict, after the repeated attacks by pro-Iranian militias against US troops in Iraq, Syria and Yemen, to which the Pentagon has responded blow for blow. In particular in the Red Sea, where Houthi attacks against commercial ships, not only American ones, continue. The raid embarrasses Biden during negotiations with Doha to unblock Iranian funds (6 billion dollars) in two Qatari banks after the release of some American hostages. And it increases his electoral difficulties on the war front: over 1,000 African-American pastors representing hundreds of thousands of faithful nationwide have mobilized to ask him for a ceasefire in Gaza. Warning him that otherwise he risks losing that crucial African-American vote that he is trying to win back these days in South Carolina, the first stop on February 3 of the Dem primaries.