Jordan in vortex of regional escalation after militia attack on US

Analysts warned on January 29 that the recent attack on American troops at the Jordan-Syria border could manufacture an escalation of hostilities in the region, according to TIME magazine.

On January 28, three US soldiers based in Tower 22, a military base hosting the global superpower’s military personnel in northeast Jordan, were killed and dozens were injured following a drone strike by Iran-backed militants. 

Militia group The Islamic Resistance of Iraq claimed a degree of responsibility for the attack in what were the first US soldier deaths in the region since the start of Israel’s brutal attack on Gaza. 

Shorufat Center for Globalization and Terrorism Studies’ director Saud Al-Sharafat said, “I believe that the operation ( the Tower 22 attack) is a double blow to Jordan and the US together, even if it is more directed against the US.” 

The organisation is based in Amman and mostly turns its attention to terrorist behaviour in the region.  

Biden affirmed that the US would retaliate against those responsible at a “time and manner of our choosing”. 

READ: 3 US troops dead in Jordan drone attack

Following the strike, Jordan, a US ally, “condemned the terrorist attack that targeted an outpost on the border with Syria, killing three US soldier from the US forces that are cooperating with Jordan in countering terrorism and securing the border”. 

Over recent months, Jordan and Syria have been at loggerheads given that the former has struck the war-torn state various times much to the condemnation of Damascus. 

Jordan is fighting a war on drugs of its own given that many groups, which the country say are Iran-backed militias, have or are attempting to smuggle drugs across the border. This has often resulted in brutal clashes. 

Following Jordanian strikes on Syria’s south earlier this month, the Syrian Foreign Ministry noted that such an assault was at odds with what the pair had previously agreed. In response, Jordan said that the strikes came after multiple warnings in meetings and that no civilians were targeted. 

Despite Amman’s claims, around 10 civilians were killed some of whom were children. 

TIME/ Shorufat Center for Globalization and Terrorism Studies

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