The White House stated on Wednesday that it thought the recent drone attack in Jordan, which tragically resulted in the deaths of three American service members, was carried out by an umbrella organization of militants known as Islamic Resistance in Iraq.
This formal attribution by the US government marks the first time it has publicly assigned blame for the incident.
According to National Security Council spokesman John Kirby, the Islamic Resistance in Iraq—an umbrella organization made up of several factions, including Kata’ib Hezbollah—planned, supplied, and enabled the attack in Jordan.
However, Kirby refrained from solely blaming Kata’ib Hezbollah for the attack, emphasizing that there have been previous instances of other groups targeting US bases.
Kirby stated, “This certainly bears the hallmarks of the activities typically carried out by Kata’ib Hezbollah. Our intelligence community attributes this attack to the umbrella group known as the Islamic Resistance in Iraq.”
This drone attack in Jordan is the most severe among a series of assaults targeting US forces in the Middle East since the Hamas attack on Israel on October 7.
Additionally, it is the first time US troops have died in the Middle East from direct gunfire.
Identifying the Fallen Servicemembers
The three servicemembers who tragically lost their lives have been identified as Sergeant William Rivers, aged 46, from Carrollton, Georgia; Sergeant Kennedy Sanders, aged 24, from Waycross, Georgia; and Sergeant Breonna Moffett, aged 23, from Savannah, Georgia.
The Army Reserve has posthumously promoted Sanders and Moffett from the rank of specialist to sergeant.
Biden’s Interaction with the Families
President Biden personally spoke with the families of each of the three fallen servicemembers on Tuesday. Furthermore, he will be present at the dignified transfer ceremony, scheduled at Dover Air Force Base on Friday.
In addition to the three fatalities, more than 40 US troops sustained injuries in the attack. Three of the injured servicemembers were transferred to a hospital in Germany on Tuesday evening for further medical treatment. While all three are reported to be in stable condition, one remains in critical condition.
US Response and Counterattack
As the US prepares to respond to the drone attack, National Security Council spokesman John Kirby revealed that the counterattack would be carried out in multiple phases.
“We will respond on our own time and schedule,” Kirby said. The first answer will not be the last one.
Anticipating the US counterstrike, US intelligence agencies closely monitor any indications of movement or resource allocation by regional groups.
Biden’s Plan of Action.
On Tuesday, President Biden declared that he had decided how to react to the drone attack. He hasn’t, however, given any precise information regarding the nature of the response.
The Islamic Resistance in Iraq is an umbrella organisation of militants, according to the White House, which has officially claimed responsibility for the recent drone attack in Jordan that claimed the lives of three American service members. With this statement, the US has formally placed the blame for the incident for the first time. According to National Security Council spokesman John Kirby, this group—which comprises elements like Kata’ib Hezbollah—planned, provided resources for, and enabled the attack. Kirby did not, however, place the entire blame on Kata’ib Hezbollah, noting that other organisations have also attacked US facilities.
Since the October Hamas attack on Israel, there have been several attacks on US forces in the Middle East, the most serious of which is the one that occurred in Jordan. Additionally, it is the first time that US soldiers have perished in the area from direct gunfire. The three Georgia-born service members who lost their lives have been identified as Sergeants William Rivers, Kennedy Sanders, and Breonna Moffett. Following their deaths, Sanders and Moffett were elevated from specialist to sergeant.
President Biden will be present at the respectful transfer ceremony at Dover Air Force Base, having personally spoken with the families of the fallen service members. Three of the more than forty US soldiers hurt in the attack were flown to a German hospital for additional care.
Kirby said that the counterattack will happen in stages as the US gets ready to react to the drone attack. He made it clear that this would not be the last response. In anticipation of the US counterstrike, US intelligence agencies closely monitor any movements or resource allocation by groups in the region.
Though he has not given any specifics, President Biden has stated that he has decided how to respond to the attack. The US government’s determination to hold those responsible accountable and the gravity of the situation are highlighted by its attribution of the incident to the Islamic Resistance in Iraq.