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Iran Threatens to “Burn” U.S. Military Bases in the Middle East Should It Join Israel’s Planned Strikes

Tehran has issued a stern warning to the United States that its military bases throughout the Middle East will become targets for Iranian missiles immediately if Washington colludes and engages with Israel in an attack on Iran.

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(DEFENCE SECURITY ASIA) — As the world awaits a potential retaliatory strike by Israel against Iran, Tehran has issued a stern warning to the United States against collaborating with Israel in any such attack on its territory.

Iranian leaders have warned that if the U.S. partakes in an Israeli strike on Iran, Washington would face grave consequences for aligning with Tel Aviv, especially on the safety of its military bases in the region.

Tehran has explicitly warned that U.S. military bases throughout the Middle East would be targeted by Iranian ballistic missiles and suicide drones immediately should Washington engage alongside Israel in such hostilities towards the country.

Four years ago, in 2020, Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) launched 12 ballistic missiles at the Al-Asad Air Base in Iraq and another military base in Erbil, housing U.S. troops, as a retaliation against US airstrikes which killed IRGC’s general Qasem Soleimani at Baghdad International Airport.

Iran has previously attacked U.S. military bases in the Middle East and now reiterates its warning of similar actions if Washington joins Israel in an attack on Iran, anticipated to occur at any time.

Iran
Iranian ballistic missile

 

To date, sources at the Pentagon and the White House have informed U.S. media that Washington intends to let Israel act alone in its retaliation against Iran and will not join Tel Aviv in any military action towards Teheran.

However, U.S. involvement in any Israel’s planned attacks on Iran cannot be entirely ruled out, given that Israel is widely regarded as a key ally of Washington, which has committed to protecting the Jewish state from Tehran’s threats.

Although there were once over 100,000 U.S. troops stationed throughout the Middle East, their numbers have significantly decreased, with estimates now placing between 30,000 to 40,000 troops in the volatile region.

However, given the ongoing conflict between Israel and Palestine and rising tensions in the region, the number of U.S. troops may have substantially increased.

As of 2022, there were 171,000 U.S. troops stationed in 178 countries worldwide, with 750 U.S. military bases in 80 countries, according to the Department of Defense.

Iran
The destruction at American Al-Asad Air Base in Iraq after it was struck by Iranian ballistic missile in 2020 after the killing of IRGC general Qasem Soleimani.

 

The largest U.S. military base in the Middle East is currently the Al-Udeid Air Base in Qatar, believed to house approximately 10,000 U.S. troops.

The base, also known as Abu-Nakhla Airport, hosts both the Qatar Air Force and the U.S. Air Force along with aircraft from allied nations such as the United Kingdom.

 It also serves as a base for the U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM).

Although the large U.S. military bases located in Gulf nations are likely equipped with air defense systems such as the Patriot, the bases situated in more remote areas of Arab countries may be vulnerable to threats from Iran or its proxy groups.

Earlier this year, a U.S. military base on the Jordan-Syria border known as “Tower 22” was attacked by suicide drones launched by Iranian proxy groups, resulting in the deaths of three American soldiers.

This incident underscores the vulnerability of US bases located in remote areas of Arab countries to such threats.

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Al-Udeid Air Base in Qatar is the largest US base in the Middle East with more than 10,000 troops and various air and ground assets.

 

Other significant U.S. air bases in the Middle East include Al-Dhafra in the United Arab Emirates, housing over 3,500 U.S. troops and various air assets; Ali Al-Salem Air Base in Kuwait; Shaikh Isa Air Base in Bahrain; Muwaffaq Al-Salti Air Base in Jordan; Al-Asad Air Base and Erbil Air Base in Iraq; Prince Sultan Air Base and King Faisal Air Base in Saudi Arabia.

The U.S. also stations ground forces at several bases across the Middle East, including Tower 22 in Jordan, Al-Tanf in Syria, radar facilities in Dimona, and Site 883 in Israel, Camp Buehring in Kuwait, Camp Sayliyah in Qatar, and FOB Union III in Iraq.

Additionally, U.S. naval facilities include Muharraq Air Base in Bahrain and Camp Lemonnier in Djibouti, among others. The U.S. Navy’s Fifth Fleet is also based in Bahrain. — DSA

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