This just in—President Trump has recently bombed a convoy of Syrian tanks encroaching on the al-Tanf base in southern Syria, where anti-Islamic State fighters are trained.
According to CBS, the Syrian regime has violated the 34 mile defensive zone around this base twice in the past several days. In the first incident, 27 regime vehicles drove within 18 miles of the al-Tanf base, which led to a mild conflict between US aircraft and Syrian forces, which refused to turn back.
On the second incident, an unarmed Syrian fighter-bomber aircraft entered the defensive zone and was intercepted by a pair of American F-22 fighters. A third incident happened today, however, and it is unclear why Syria continues to violate the conflict zone agreement.
“US-led coalition aircraft bombed forces allied to the Syrian government on Thursday, after they advanced too close to a base where Western special forces are training rebel fighters.”
“American jets were understood to have struck a convoy of 27 tanks as they moved to within 15 miles of a coalition garrison in al-Tanf, a border crossing point to Iraq in southern Syria, marking the most direct clash between coalition forces and fighters with Bashar al-Assad’s regime.”
“Syrian, Iranian and allied Lebanese Hizbollah forces have in recent days moved surface-to-air missiles closer to the eastern frontline with the moderate Free Syrian Army (FSA) units, in an apparent warning to the US-led coalition, which flies sorties against Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isil) in the area.”
With Assad and his allies pushing the line, it seems that President Trump is sending a message—he’s not afraid to use violence if world leaders act up. Despite the seemingly large attack, this came after multiple attempts to buzz the regime.
But, when the convoy refused to turn around, “…there was finally a strike against the lead portion of that movement,” a US official said.
CNN also confirms the breaking story:
“US-led coalition aircraft bombed pro-Syrian regime forces Thursday that ‘were advancing well inside an established de-confliction zone,’ according to a statement issued by Operation Inherent Resolve, the official name for the coalition fighting ISIS.”
“The statement said that the pro-regime militias ‘posed a threat to US and partner forces at Al-Tanf,’ a remote base in southern Syria near the Syria-Jordan-Iraq border that coalition advisers have used to train ‘Vetted Syrian Opposition,’ to aid in the fight against ISIS.”
“Two US aircraft were dispatched as a ‘show of force,’ to get the Syrian vehicles to turn around, according to a US official.”
“The official statement said that the vehicles did not stop despite the show of force and warning shots.”
The airstrikes are considered to be “self-defense,” given the pro-Assad forces encroachment on the al-Tanf base, The official statement also added that Russia had made “apparent” attempts to dissuade “Syrian pro-regime movement south toward al-Tanf,” but that those attempts were unsuccessful.