In a reversal from its previous position of ‘all is well’, the US central command accepted the damage done by Iran’s attack on its Ain-al-Asad base, saying at least 11 US soldiers were severely injured, although the US military had previously maintained there was no damage done by the Iranian attack.
The official spokesperson of the US-Central Command said that, “While no US service members were killed in the Jan. 8 Iranian attacks on al-Asad Airbase, several were treated for concussion symptoms from the blast and are still being assessed.”
Astonishingly for a well-organised military like the US’, this is not the first 180 degree turn of position. Previously, the US forces commander in Iraq had sent a letter to Iraqi authorities, informing them of US troop withdrawal, after the Iraqi parliament voted on it.
However, much like this quagmire, the Pentagon later went back on that position and said that the letter from the US commander was a ‘mistake’.
At the time of the Ain al Asad attack, most of the 1,500 US soldiers at the base had been tucked away in bunkers, after advance warning from superiors.
American and other foreign troops deployed in a US-led coalition fighting the remnants of the Islamic State jihadist group
The strike caused significant material damage but no casualties, according to previous reports from the US military.
US President Donald Trump also said on the morning following the volley that “no American were harmed in last night’s attack.”
However, Urban said that “in the days following the attack, out of an abundance of caution, some service members were transported from al-Asad Air Base.”
“At this time, eight individuals have been transported to Landstuhl, and three have been transported to Camp Arifjan,” he said, referring to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany and Camp Arifjan in Kuwait.
In addition to the sprawling Ain al-Asad airbase in western Iraq, Iran’s missiles also targeted a base in Arbil, housing both American and other foreign troops deployed in a US-led coalition fighting the remnants of the Islamic State jihadist group.
“When deemed fit for duty, the service members are expected to return to Iraq following screening,” Urban said.