Iran Launches Missile Attack On Iraqi Base Housing U.S. Troops

Jan 8, 2020

Iran strikes back. Now what? We have the latest regional analysis, from top military and diplomatic voices.


Bryan Bender, defense editor for Politico Pro. (@BryanDBender)

David Gergen, professor of public service and founding director of the Center for Public Leadership at the Harvard Kennedy School. Former White House adviser to four U.S. presidents of both parties: Nixon, Ford, Reagan and Clinton. Author of “Eyewitness to Power: The Essence of Leadership, Nixon to Clinton.” (@David_Gergen)

Douglas Silliman, former ambassador to Iraq from 2016 to 2019. Before that, he was ambassador to Kuwait from 2014 to 2016. President of the Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington. (@DougSilliman)

John Griffin, retired Marine Corps lieutenant colonel. He was deployed to Iraq from 2004 to 2005, and he received a Bronze Star in Afghanistan in 2010. Professor at the Naval War College Rochefort Group focusing on information warfare. (@John_F_Griffin)

From The Reading List

The Guardian: “Iran launches missiles at Iraq airbases hosting US and coalition troops” — “Iran launched more than a dozen missiles at Iraqi bases hosting US and coalition troops overnight, declaring the strikes to be retaliation for the killing last week of the senior Iranian Qassem Suleimani.

“Al-Asad airbase in Iraq’s Anbar province was hit 17 times, including by two ballistic missiles that failed to detonate, according to the Iraqi government. A further five missiles were targeted at a base in the northern city of Erbil in the assault, which began at about 1.30am local time on Wednesday (10.30pm GMT).

“The Iraqi prime minister’s office said Iran notified Iraq shortly after midnight that its response to the killing of its top military commander had begun, and that retaliation would be limited to locations where the US military was present.

“Adel Abdul Mahdi’s office said in a statement on Wednesday that Iraq was simultaneously informed by the Americans that military bases in Ain al-Asad and Irbil were under missile attack.”

USA Today: “‘Black boxes’ found in Ukrainian plane crash that killed 176 people in Iran: What we know” — “Authorities have found the ‘black boxes’ of the Ukrainian passenger jet that crashed into Iranian farmland on Wednesday just minutes after taking off from the main airport in the country’s capital of Tehran.

“The plane carried 167 passengers and nine crew members from different nations. There were no survivors.

“The ‘black boxes,’ or flight data recorder, stores cockpit conversations and other data instrumental to the investigation.

“Ukrainian authorities have offered to help with the investigation and are preparing a group of specialists to help with search operations, according to the country’s Prime Minister Oleksiy Honcharuk.

“The crash came hours after Iran launched a ballistic missile attack on Iraqi bases housing U.S. soldiers, however, both Ukrainian and Iranian officials gave no indication the two events are related.”

The New York Times: “Ayatollah Calls Iran Missile Strikes a ‘Slap in the Face’ to the U.S.” — “President Hassan Rouhani of Iran says Tehran’s final answer to the killing of Maj. Gen. Qassim Suleimani will be to kick all U.S. forces out of the region.

“Iran says it does not seek war after firing missiles at bases housing Americans.

The Iranian foreign minister said on Wednesday that his country had ‘concluded’ its attacks on American forces and did ‘not seek escalation or war’ after firing more than 20 ballistic missiles at two military bases in Iraq where United States troops are stationed.

“The minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, posted the remarks on Twitter after Iran had conducted the strikes in response to the killing of Maj. Gen. Qassim Suleimani, a leader of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps.

“Senior Iraqi defense officials who work with the United States command said that no Americans or Iraqis had been killed in the attacks. In a short statement released on Wednesday morning, the Joint Command in Baghdad, which includes both Iraqi troops and soldiers from the international coalition, said that neither force ‘recorded any losses.’ “

This article was originally published on

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit