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Pentagon admits U.S. forces also target of terrorist groups in Middle East region

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It is time Americans unequivocally understand that they are also targets of Hamas. Terrorist networks aligned with the Islamic Republic of the Middle East have taken similar aim at U.S. forces throughout the region. “U.S. positions in Iraq and Syria have come under at least 13 drone and missile attacks. Last week, the Iran-aligned Houthi militia fired off a fusillade of rockets and unmanned vehicles ‘potentially headed for Israel’ that were intercepted by an American Navy destroyer in the Red Sea” writes National Review.

On October 18, the Pentagon revealed that one American contractor in Iraq died after experiencing a cardiac event. The contractor was trying to seek shelter from an incoming rocket attack, which turned out to be a false alarm. The following day, a Defense Department spokesman acknowledged the “uptick” in attacks from Iran’s Shiite militia groups, but assured reporters that there was “no direct linkage” between their activities and Israel’s war with another Iran-backed terrorist entity.

When asked about casualty figures, the Pentagon could only say with confidence that no civilians were injured in the attacks. As for U.S. service personnel, the “numbers” were “all over the map” and therefore unreliable. “That’s another aspect that we’re looking at right now,” Brigadier General Pat Ryder assured reporters on October 19.

This week, the Pentagon finally was given an assessment of the Middle East. “At least 24 U.S. troops were wounded in the attacks on American positions in the Middle East, Defense officials admitted on Tuesday” writes National Review. Most of those are classified as “minor injuries,” but they nonetheless jeopardize the readiness of America’s forward positions.

The Pentagon “expects these figures will rise in the coming days.” Ryder suggested “What we are seeing is the prospect for more significant escalation against U.S. forces and personnel across the region in the very near-term coming from Iranian proxy forces and ultimately from Iran.” The Defense Department is “preparing for this escalation” and for the eventual prospect of “responding decisively.”

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International

Report: North Korean ballistic missile fired by Russia into Ukraine contained components sourced from U.S.

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A new report from Conflict Armament Research (CAR), a U.K.-based investigative organization, determined that a North Korean ballistic missile which was fired by Russia into Ukraine contained “numerous” electronic components sourced from the U.S. and Europe.

The Daily Caller News Foundation reported on the findings, noting approximately 75% of the 290 components analyzed in the missile originated from U.S.-based companies, and an additional 16% of components came from European firms, according to the CAR report.

The electronic components came from 26 countries in total and were largely utilized in the missile’s navigation system, according to the report. It isn’t clear how the components ended up in North Korea’s possession, as the country is strictly sanctioned by a bulk of the international community, but it’s possible other foreign companies, acting as middlemen, bought the components and then diverted them to the communist country.

However, the fact that North Korea was able to acquire so many American electronic component parts suggests “that the country has developed a robust acquisition network capable of circumventing, without detection, sanction regimes that have been in place for nearly two decades,” according to the report.

CAR documents “weapons at the point of use and track their sources back through the chains of supply.”North Korea gathered the components, assembled the missile and shipped it to Russia, all within a relatively short time period, according to the report. The missile was recovered by CAR on Jan. 2, and the investigators determined it could not have been manufactured before March 2023.

The U.S. government and intelligence agencies are working to stop sensitive American intellectual property from ending up in the hands of several foreign adversaries. North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un and Russian President Vladimir Putin have strengthened their relationship since Russia first invaded Ukraine in February 2022.

“Due in part to our export and sanction controls, Russia has become increasingly isolated on the world stage, and they’ve been forced to look to like-minded states for military equipment,” White House National Security Council (NSC) spokesman John Kirby said during a press briefing in January. “One of those states is North Korea.”

 

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