A video of several burning trucks on Saturday night allegedly showed an attack on a convoy transporting vehicles to a US base in Iraq, according to social media with ties to pro-Iranian militias. The attack supposedly targeted Americans in Iraq or at least was meant to.
It is part of the wider campaign to try to intimidate and threaten the US to leave Iraq. It is not the first time a convoy was targeted. In February, a supply convoy was attacked.
While the US denied an attacked had taken place, Fars News in Iran reported the attack with photos, saying it happened in Diwaniyah province. An armed group set fire to three US vehicles being transported by truck, a security source said. Firefighters extinguished the fire, and the Iraqi Ministry of Defense is investigating.
US helicopters were reported to be in the vicinity. Injured people, apparently civilians, were brought to a nearby hospital. The Iranian reports said the convoy was from Basra and heading to an unidentified base.
A group called Sayara Thora Al-Ashrin, or SarayaAshreen Thani, claimed responsibility. The same group’s name can be spelled SarayaThorat al-Ashrin. In recent months a number of new pro-Iranian groups have popped to claim attacks on the US, apparently part of a plan to distance these rogue elements from the official government paramilitary forces that includes elements of Kataib Hezbollah and pro-Iran militias. These groups have names like Usbat al-ThaireenAshab al-Kahaf or SarayaShuhadaThawarAshreen al-Thani.
The attack underpins the uncertainty in Iraq and the increasing pressure on the US to leave the country. Diwaniyah is on a road that leads from southern Iraq toward Baghdad. If one wants to transport Humvees and vehicles from US bases in Kuwait, they might take this route or nearby Route 1. Al-Mayadeen and other media in the region that lean toward Iran reported the incident.
SarayaThurat Al-Ashrin also claimed it had carried out a similar attack in June. Some of the video and images from the alleged July 11 attack were old, so it was not clear the extent of the attack or if it happened at all.
What is important is not necessarily whether it happened or who was in the vehicles but rather the attempt to create an atmosphere of attacks, pushed by pro-Iranian media, to pave the way for larger real attacks, such as the dozens of rockets fired at US bases in Iraq over the last year.
The creation of new groups that claim to target the US is also part of this pattern – whether these groups really exist or are just a rebranding of existing cells from Kataib Hezbollah or other groups.
Source » jpost