Drone Attack on Syria Base Came From Iraqi Militants, U.S. Officials Say
The drones that attacked a U.S. military compound in southeast Syria on Aug. 15 were launched by Iranian-backed militants in central Iraq,
U.S. officials say, posing a challenge for the White House as it seeks to navigate Baghdad’s tumultuous politics.
The Iraqi militia’s alleged involvement was briefly made public last week when a U.S. military command in the Middle East tweeted a map showing that the attack had been launched from Iraq and providing photographs of remnants of the Iranian drones.
But officials at the White House’s National Security Council and the Pentagon expressed concerns about the disclosure.
The Defense Department instructed that the tweet be deleted “due to operational sensitivities in the region,” Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder, the Defense Department spokesman, told The Wall Street Journal.
U.S. officials say the information in the tweet was accurate and that the drones were launched from Iraq’s Babil province in an area controlled by Kataib Hezbollah, a militia with close ties to Tehran.