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Rocket attack against Al Asad Air Base forms latest symbolic attack against US forces in Iraq

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At approximately 19:30 on 3 December, between five and seven 122mm rockets impacted in or around Al Asad Air Base, located in western Anbar province. The Security Media Cell claimed five rockets impacted within the base, offering few further details beyond initial reporting. Operation Inherent Resolve (OIR) spokesman Col. Myles B. Caggins confirmed that no facilities were hit, and no casualties were sustained, after several rockets reportedly impacted outside the base.

ISF and CF implemented heightened security postures in the area, with increased surveillance flights reported in the aftermath. A local government source claimed the point of origin was located near Majid Checkpoint, an Iraqi Army post in nearby Baghdadi town. Other sources more generally referred to desert areas outside Baghdadi, with further confirmation required for the specific location. At the point of origin, ISF discovered a Kia bongo truck rigged as an improvised mobile rocket launcher platform containing 15 rocket tubes. Images indicated seven rockets fired and the remaining eight rockets failed to fire. The vehicle was damaged by the rocket launches, which were likely timer initiated based on established patterns.

While no claim of responsibility was issued, nor is one anticipated, this attack bore the hallmark of perpetration by Iranian proxy forces. Al Asad Air Base is one of the largest bases hosting US forces in Iraq. On 23 November, US Vice President Mike Pence visited troops at the base as part of an unannounced trip to Iraq prior to Thanksgiving. US and other CF outlets predictably refrained from discussing the conditions surrounding the attack.   The latest attacks against joint CF-ISF bases had significant connotations as discussed further in the full report.

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