Iran Fires Ballistic missiles on US Bases in Iraq | Page 9 | World Defense

Iran Fires Ballistic missiles on US Bases in Iraq

Falcon29

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Another one:

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Several Americans were injured when rockets hit Iraqi base for second time in a week

(CNN)The three coalition members wounded when rockets struck a military base in Iraq on Saturday were US personnel, a US military official told CNN.

It was not immediately clear whether they were military personnel or civilian.

The al-Taji base was hit by its second rocket attack in a week early on Saturday local time, Col. Myles B. Caggins III, a spokesman for the international Operation Inherent Resolve (OIR), confirmed on Twitter.

Caggins said three coalition troops and two Iraqi troops were wounded and authorities were assessing the damage.
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Falcon29

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If Americans really want to remain safe in Iraq, they have to answer the attacks by hitting missiles on Tehran and Qom.
Same goes for Saudi and other GCC members.
Till Mulla in Iran is satisfied about safety of Tehran and Qom, he would continue to bite like a mad dog.

Iraq is in a political deadlock at the moment and protests are continuing. So I believe these pro-Iran militias are trying to bring about an end to the protests by putting the country into some heightened security situation. I doubt Iran and these pro-Iran militias really want to confront the US and try pushing US troops out of Iraq. They would lose their power that way. They are only tough against weaker people like protestors or attacking their neighbors who are focusing on economic development.

So Saudi and GCC are facing existential threat from Iran and they need covert efforts in Iran and intelligence efforts to determine what Iranian leadership's plans are for GCC and Saudi Arabia and to be able to weaken Iranian leadership. If Iran senses US is distracted by major event and won't be able to come to aide of GCC/Saudi then they will attack and make their moves against them since Iranian leadership is uncivilized and have too much sectarian hate in their hearts. They'll attack Turkey, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia before firing one bullet at Israel.
 

Falcon29

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Any response from US so far?

There is no existing active operation by the US against the Iraqi militias and thus no state of war, so they have to get permission to respond from higher command. In this case the President himself, who has signaled in the past he will only respond to American deaths and is very busy trying to get a stimulus package out to help keep economy float due to coronavirus related economic slowdown.

So no response yet, and another two rockets hit an area in Baghdad yesterday supposedly targeting coalition forces but didn't cause any casualties.
 

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Iran better watches out. I do not know why the Mullah is so eager to pick a fighter with the US especially in this time.
 

Falcon29

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This was posted by Trump to Facebook, maybe Iran wants it's peoples minds off all the dead around them




Donald J. Trump
2 hrs ·
Upon information and belief, Iran or its proxies are planning a sneak attack on U.S. troops and/or assets in Iraq. If this happens, Iran will pay a very heavy price, indeed!



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I think Iran is in belief that the US/Arab allies want to achieve in Iraq what they couldn't in Syria. Which is to cut off Iran from it's 'Shia crescent'. Both Syria and Iraq and strategic partners to Iran and they cannot for sake of the regimes strategic interests allow either two to fall into hands of pro-US gov't.

They are more paranoid with the US strikes on their Iraqi proxies which they previously thought was a redline the US wouldn't cross. Iraq will play different than how Syria did since US will try to advance a pro-US regime and Iran realizes that and wants to remind Iraqi's that the militias have power and are in control.

I cannot see how a US campaign against Iranian proxies in Iraq would go well though. Since Iraqi army will not move against them out of fear of civil war. US would have to strike at Iran but that can also cause a war to erupt that may not go in a favor because our Arab allies are too divided and don't know what they want.

So our policy going forward will remain deterrence and it is working. Since the proxies are making calculated moves and less frequently attacking. Only way we face trouble is if Iran decides it has nothing to lose and goes all out against our allies. Majority of that trouble will be because Arab allies are not united on one agenda.
 

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USAF Colonel on Night of Al-Asad Attack: ‘I Didn’t Believe Anyone Would Survive’
By Brian W. Everstine

Ballistic missile attack brings an unprecedented amount of media to al-Asad AB

Media outlets visit one of the many impact sites created by the recent missile attacks at al-Asad AB, Iraq, on Jan. 13, 2020. Army photo by Spc. Derek Mustard.

The 80 Airmen hunkered in bunkers on Jan. 7, 2020, wondering if they would live through the night. The sky glowed and the ground “shook with a force impossible to put into words,” as Iranian ballistic missiles rained down on al-Asad Air Base, Iraq.

Air Forces Central Command on April 7 published detailed recollections from more than 20 Airmen at al-Asad and other locations inside Iraq who survived the attack, launched to revenge the death of Quds Force leader Qassem Soleimani. No U.S. or Iraqi forces were killed in the attack, with American officials crediting intelligence and space-based surveillance with providing enough warning for the troops on the ground. However, more than 100 people received traumatic brain injuries in the attack, and vehicles, buildings, and equipment were damaged or destroyed.

Here’s what some of the Airmen said. The full AFCENT report is available here.

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Lt. Col. Staci Coleman. Photo: AFCENT report screenshot

Lt. Col. Staci Coleman, commander of the 443rd Air Expeditionary Squadron.
As commander, Coleman was informed of the potential attack and immediately needed to form a plan to keep the 160 personnel under her command safe. She decided to evacuate half of the personnel with much of the base’s aircraft, and keep half at the base to secure the airfield.
Coleman watched the planes leave, and headed to a bunker. At about 1 a.m., the missiles began, she said.

“I was being forced to gamble with my members’ lives by something I couldn’t control,” Coleman said. “I was deciding who would live and who would die. I honestly thought anyone remaining behind would perish. I didn’t believe anyone would survive a ballistic missile attack, and it made me feel sick and helpless.”

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Maj. Johnathan Jordan. Photo: AFCENT report screenshot

Maj. Johnathan Jordan, director of operations for the 443rd AES
Jordan was selected to lead the team evacuating the base. While leaving, he described feeling guilt for not staying behind, and anxiety for what the base would look like when he returned.

“Early the next morning, I received a message that everyone was OK and all accounted for,” he said. “Chills rushed through my body. We had survived. I rallied my team as we celebrated the good news.”

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Capt. Nate Brown. Photo: AFCENT report screenshot

Capt. Nate Brown, civil engineer flight commander with the 443rd AES
Selected to stay behind, Brown recalled entering the bunker with other members of the squadron. Intelligence said the attack window began at 11 p.m., and as time passed, he wondered if they would be OK. Then the strikes started.
“The next wave hits. Then the next, and the next. I have no idea if anyone is alive outside this bunker,” he said.

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Master Sgt. John Haines, Tech.Sgt. Bryan Moody, Staff Sgt. Drew Davenport, and Senior Airman Michael Booth. Photo: AFCENT report screenshot

Members of the 443rd AES Security Forces
Team members realized early on that something big was happening, as the entire base “seemed to be bugging out.” The security forces at the base received an intel briefing confirming the expected attack, with either chemical, biological, or ballistic missiles inbound.

One anonymous SF member recalled getting a text ordering him to the squadron, and to bring a gas mask with filters. Some Airmen were leaving, but he was staying.
“I’m not going to lie, I was happy hearing I was posted,” he said. “If things were to pop off, I’d be right there on the front lines and that is what I signed the dotted line to do.”

Some SF members piled into an M-ATV to patrol the base, to check in with posts and other Airmen. At about 1 a.m., they got the “INCOMING, INCOMING, INCOMING” call and ran to the M-ATV for some cover. A missile hit about 100 meters away.

The team swept the base looking for casualties. A missile hit right next to a tower, and flames blocked the exit. Two soldiers in the tower were trying to evacuate through a small hole in the wall used for the tower’s .50 caliber gun. The security forces team used the M-ATV to slam over Hesco barriers and create a bridge to help the soldiers escape.

As the attack progressed, the team got word than an Army remotely piloted aircraft above was low on fuel and desperately needed to land. They surveilled the airfield and determined the best way for it to touch down.

The anonymous SF member recalled entering a bunker when the missiles hit.
“The sky lit up and we felt the shock wave as debris from the explosion pummeled our shelters,” he said. “My ears wouldn’t stop ringing. The next four hours became a blurred mix of emotions and chaos. Bomb after bomb shook us for what felt like all night.”

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Staff Sgt. Brian Sermons. Photo: AFCENT report screenshot

Staff Sgt. Brian Sermons, weather NCO in-charge with the 22nd Expeditionary Weather Squadron
Sermons took cover in a bunker, and described an unrelenting onslaught of missiles.

“I kept thinking, ‘The next one is coming for us. I won’t be able to see my wife and kids again. My parents and brother. They’re going to be left on this Earth without me. I just want to hug them one more time.’”

Once able to leave the bunker after the missile attack ended, Sermons recalled seeing other Airmen and the feeling of relief when he heard there were no casualties.

“We will continue to pick up the pieces because the mission has to continue, but I will never forget that night for the rest of my life,” he said.
 

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Khafee

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US Troops Who Suffered TBIs in Missile Attack Recommended for Purple Hearts
30 Apr 2020
By Richard Sisk

View attachment 12525
In this Monday, Jan. 13, 2020 photo, U.S. Soldiers stand near their residence area that was destroyed by Iranian bombing at Ain al-Asad air base, in Anbar, Iraq. (AP Photo/Qassim Abdul-Zahra)

An unspecified number of the more than 100 troops who were treated for traumatic brain injuries suffered in a January missile attack on Al Asad air base in Iraq have been recommended for Purple Hearts, the Pentagon confirmed Wednesday.

Officials have previously stated that Purple Heart recommendations have come from unit commanders and the individual military branches for those injured in the Jan. 8 Iranian missile strikes on the air base.

"The Purple Heart submissions remain under review and are being processed in accordance with Defense Department and military service regulations," Pentagon spokeswoman Jessica Maxwell said in a statement Wednesday. "Upon completion, service members entitled to receive the Purple Heart will be notified by their leadership."

She gave no timeline for the process, but CNN, citing three defense officials, reported that "final decisions" on awarding possibly dozens of Purple Hearts could be coming soon from Combined Joint Task Force-Operation Inherent Resolve and the Defense Department.

At a Feb. 3 news briefing, Pentagon chief spokesman Jonathan Hoffman cited general standards for awarding the Purple Heart -- standards that appeared to qualify most of the troops who were treated for TBI after the Iranian missile strikes.

He said Purple Heart eligibility for TBI required a doctor's diagnosis and confirmation that the injury forced the service member to miss at least two days of duty for treatment.

Some of those injured in the Al Asad attack were evacuated to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany and to the states for treatment and would appear to qualify for Purple Hearts.

Hoffman said recommendations for Purple Hearts were mainly "a question for the services" with final approval coming from the Defense Department.

"The process is going to play out," he said. "Fortunately, all the cases to date have been characterized as mild TBI, which is the equivalent of concussions."

In the early years of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, the military appeared reluctant to award Purple Hearts for TBI, but awards have been made more regularly as TBI from improvised explosive devices and other blasts became known as the "signature" combat injury of the wars.

In 2011, DoD updated the criteria for awarding the Purple Heart in cases of TBI, stating that the injury had to be caused by enemy action or suffered in action against an enemy, and had to require treatment by a medical officer or certification that it would have required treatment if available.

The Iranian missile strikes on Al Asad were in response to the Jan. 3 U.S. drone strike at Baghdad International Airport that killed Iranian Quds Force leader Qasem Soleimani.

President Donald Trump and Pentagon officials initially said there were no U.S. casualties from the missile strikes on Al Asad, but symptoms of TBI can often take days to appear.

On Jan. 16, U.S. Central Command stated that several of the troops at Al Asad "were treated for concussion symptoms from the blast and are still being assessed."

When asked about the growing number of concussions, Trump told reporters in Davos, Switzerland, on Jan. 22 that, "I heard that they had headaches and a couple of other things, but I would say and I can report that it's not very serious. I don't consider them very serious injuries relative to other injuries that I've seen."

The Pentagon has since said that at least 109 troops at Al Asad on the night of the attacks suffered mild TBI.

In the early morning hours immediately after the missile attacks, and after briefing Trump at the White House, Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Mark Milley said off-camera at the Pentagon that the launches "were intended to cause structural damage, destroy vehicles and equipment, and to kill personnel. That's my own personnel assessment."

His initial judgment was that the missiles carried 1,000-2,000 pound warheads.

On April 7, Air Forces Central Command published accounts from more than 20 Airmen at Al Asad testifying to the ferocity of the attacks that lasted an estimated 90 minutes.

Capt. Nate Brown recalled taking cover with others in a bunker.

Then, "the next wave hits. Then the next, and the next. I have no idea if anyone is alive outside this bunker."
 

Khafee

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US Awards 29 Purple Hearts for Brain Injuries in Iran Attack
By Associated Press
May 05, 2020

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FILE - U.S. Soldiers stand while bulldozers clear rubble and debris at Ain al-Asad air base in Anbar, Iraq, Jan. 13, 2020.

WASHINGTON - Six Army soldiers who were injured in a ballistic missile attack in Iraq in January have been awarded Purple Hearts, and 23 others have been approved for the award and will get them later this week, U.S. Central Command said Monday.

Navy Capt. Bill Urban said the awards were approved by Lt. Gen. Pat White, the top U.S. commander in Iraq, following a review.

About 110 U.S. service members were diagnosed with traumatic brain injuries after the Iranian ballistic missile attack at al-Asad Air Base in Iraq on Jan. 8. More than a dozen missiles struck the base in an attack that Iran carried out as retaliation for a U.S. drone strike in Baghdad that killed Tehran's most powerful general, Qassem Soleimani, on Jan. 3. Troops at al-Asad were warned of an incoming attack, and most were in bunkers scattered around the base.

Initially, commanders and President Donald Trump said there were no injuries during the attack. But after several days, troops began exhibiting concussion-like symptoms and the military started evacuating some from Iraq. A majority of those injured were eventually able to return to work; others were hospitalized or returned to the U.S.

Trump triggered criticism when he dismissed the injuries as "not very serious" and described them as headaches and other things.

Traumatic brain injury, or TBI, became a bigger concern for the military in recent years as more and more troops in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars began suffering from head injuries from bombings and other explosions.

Medical science improved its understanding of its causes and effects on brain function. It can involve varying degrees of impairment of thinking, memory, vision, hearing and other functions. The severity and duration of the injury can vary widely.

According to Urban, the first six Purple Hearts were given to soldiers in Iraq and Kuwait. The other soldiers are in the United States and will get their awards in the coming days. He said 80 service members were considered for the awards, and each recommendation package submitted by unit leaders was evaluated by a review board based on Army and Air Force regulations.

Urban said that a TBI diagnosis doesn't automatically qualify a service member for a Purple Heart.
 

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Misaligned radar responsible for downing of Ukrainian passenger jet, Iran says
Security officers and Red Crescent workers are seen at the site where Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752 after takeoff from Iran’s Imam Khomeini airport on the outskirts of Tehran on Jan. 8.

Security officers and Red Crescent workers are seen at the site where Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752 after takeoff from Iran’s Imam Khomeini airport on the outskirts of Tehran on Jan. 8. (Wana News Agency/Reuters)
By
Louisa Loveluck and
Amanda Coletta
July 12, 2020 at 11:49 a.m. PDT
BEIRUT — Iranian investigators blamed the downing of a Ukrainian passenger jet over Tehran earlier this year on the misalignment of an air defense unit's radar system, in a report issued late Saturday.

All 176 passengers and crew aboard Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752 were killed in the Jan. 8 crash, which sparked widespread public anger. Iranian authorities took days to admit that the country’s forces had fired an antiaircraft missile at the Boeing 737-800 shortly after its takeoff from Imam Khomeini International Airport.
Most of the dead were Iranian; 85 had citizenship or permanent residency in Canada. Many were students; some were headed back to Canada after the holiday break. In the days after the shoot-down, Iranian campuses erupted in protests as grief-stricken and angry youths called for justice.

“Immediate action is required from the Iranian regime to ensure that they conduct a comprehensive and transparent investigation in accordance with international standards, so that all those responsible are held accountable,” said Sylvain Leclerc, a spokesman for Global Affairs Canada.

The report from Iran’s civil aviation authority built on earlier findings that blamed the human error of a missile operator who had 10 seconds to decide whether the plane was a threat.

The Post's Shane Harris explains what the President's niece's new book tells us about the "dysfunctional" Trump family. (Zach Purser Brown/The Washington Post)
The downing occurred at a time when regional tensions were boiling. A U.S. drone strike killed Iranian Maj. Gen. Qasem Soleimani on Jan. 3, and Iran responded by launching ballistic missiles at U.S. soldiers in Iraq. The Iranian armed forces were then bracing for a counterstrike.

The civil aviation authority claims in the new report that the radar the missile operator was monitoring had been misaligned, causing it to misinterpret the location of the passenger jet and indicate instead that there might be a second, unidentified, aircraft in the air.

“A failure occurred due to a human error in following the procedure” for aligning the radar, causing a “107-degree error” in the system, the authority reported. It then detailed, minute by minute, the chain of events that led to the plane’s targeting. The missile operator contacted higher command but received no response, the authority said. Twenty seconds later, the first of two missiles were fired. Video footage showed the second appearing to hit the aircraft. The plane erupted in a fireball before crashing on farmland on the outskirts of Tehran.
Iran admits to shooting down Ukrainian passenger jet because of ‘human error’
The report did not include the names of any individuals deemed responsible. The authority argued that this would have hampered the investigators’ ability to secure the cooperation of those involved. It said revealing their identities would be decided through the country’s judiciary.

Comments attributed to judiciary spokesman Gholamhossein Esmaili by the state-run Islamic Republic News Agency last month suggested that six arrests had been made. Three of the alleged suspects had been let out on bail.

More details of the crash could become clearer later this month. Iran said it would send the aircraft’s black boxes — the flight data recorder and the cockpit voice recorder — to France by July 20 for examination by experts, the International Civil Aviation Organization said last month. Iran has not followed through on previous promises to turn over the recorders.
A Canadian readout of a June 22 call between Canadian Foreign Minister François-Philippe Champagne and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif indicated that Iran had agreed to “enter into negotiations for reparations.”
Iran’s foreign minister says officials ‘lied’ about downing of Ukrainian plane
Hamed Esmaeilion lost his wife, Parisa Eghbalian, and their 9-year-old daughter, Reera, in the crash. He said a “full, fair and independent investigation” is far more important than monetary compensation. He was unsatisfied with the new report.

“Iran is trying to manipulate and obstruct justice and hide the truth by shaping public opinion,” he said on Sunday. “It’s very hard to believe this story.”

Esmaeilion, a spokesman for victims’ families in Canada, said Iranian officials have sought to intimidate family members, pressuring them to remove social media posts critical of the government.
The Canadian Broadcasting Corp. reported this month that Iran’s lead investigator suggested to a victim’s relative that the airspace over Tehran wasn’t closed the night of the shoot-down because that could have tipped off U.S. forces to an “imminent” plan to strike their bases in Iraq. After the CBC sought comment from Iranian authorities, the broadcaster reported, the investigator was removed.

Esmaeilion is frustrated by the slow pace of the investigation. “I’m in an empty house right now,” he said. “It’s very hard just living like this day by day with this hope that justice will come to you.”


“If that doesn’t happen, I think we will all be destroyed.”


Coletta reported from Toronto.


 
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