Biden Delivers Formal Notice to Congress

( – On Feb. 4, President Joe Biden sent Senate president pro tempore and Democratic Washington Sen. Patty Murray and House Speaker and Louisiana Rep. Mike Johnson a letter notifying them about U.S. air strikes that would target Iran-backed militants and Iranian military targets in Syria and Iraq.

In the letter, Biden stated that “discrete strikes” have been conducted by the U.S. to deter Iran-backed militants from further attacks on U.S. troops and bases. He added that the strikes are being conducted in such a way as to avoid civilian casualties and “limit the risk of escalation.”

According to the letter, the strikes were ordered by Biden using his “constitutional authority as Commander in Chief and Chief Executive.” He said he was notifying Congress about the strikes to keep them “fully informed, consistent with the War Powers Resolution,” and requested their support.

The strikes began Feb. 2, after the Jan. 27 attack by Iran that killed three U.S. service members and injured 40 at a base in Jordan. According to the Pentagon, the drone strike was a one-way “suicide drone attack on a patrol base” that was carried out by “radical Iran-backed militant groups.” As of Feb. 3, more than 85 targets have been hit by the strikes.

The U.S. and Britain have also been conducting airstrikes on Iran-backed Houthis in Yemen following the Houthis attacks on ships in the Red Sea. On Jan. 31, U.S. forces blew up around 10 unmanned suicide drones in Yemen, which were getting ready to be launched. U.S. forces also conducted strikes following a drone attack that hit a base in Syria where U.S. troops are stationed. The Houthis began attacking ships in the Red Sea since the Oct. 7 attack by Hamas in Israel as a show of support for the Palestinians. The attacks have not only caused trade between Europe and Asia to slow but also caused concern that the Israel-Hamas war could become a regional conflict.

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