Since President Joe Biden's inauguration, Iranian-backed proxies have launched approximately 150 attacks on U.S. forces in Iraq and Syria, as revealed by two U.S. defense officials. A significant surge in violence against U.S. forces in the past month has been noted, with more than a third of the attacks occurring during this period. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin had previously reported on March 28 that there had been 83 attacks under the Biden administration. However, it has now been confirmed by defense officials that an additional 61 attacks took place since October 17, some resulting in injuries to more than 60 U.S. military personnel. The objective of these attacks appears to be the removal of U.S. forces from the region, rather than being directly linked to the situation in Gaza.
In response to the escalating attacks, the U.S. has undertaken three rounds of retaliatory strikes targeting Iranian facilities. The Pentagon asserts that these military deterrence efforts have effectively prevented further escalation. Nevertheless, a bipartisan group of senators is urging the administration to consider all options, including the use of military force, to deter Iran.Senator Richard Blumenthal, a Democrat from Connecticut, asserts that Iran exerts a destructive and harmful influence. This claim follows a series of disturbing incidents in March, during which militants backed by Iran launched attacks resulting in the death of a U.S. contractor in Syria. Furthermore, these assaults inflicted traumatic brain injuries upon 23 members of the military, while also injuring 25 U.S. military personnel, as reported by the Pentagon. In a concerted retaliation, the Pentagon swiftly performed airstrikes on Iranian-supported facilities in Syria, mirroring previous actions undertaken by U.S. forces.