A “bomb-laden drone" attacked US forces at a base near Baghdad International Airport, according to sources in Iraq. This area is called Victory Base and has been targeted in the past. Official disputed the pro-Iranian claims, saying news of the attack was disinformation. The area allegedly targeted is called "Victory Base" by pro-Iranian groups and media, and has been targeted in the past. In fact Camp Victory closed down in December 2011 when Operation Iraqi Freedom ended. What is now at the Baghdad airport is the Department of State operated Baghdad Diplomatic Support Center (BDSC). Hundreds of US and coalition troops are co located at the BDSC.
Drone attacks on US forces in Iraq have been rapidly increasing over the last months. There are believed to have been 45 attacks this year on US forces in Iraq, and around seven of them have involved drones.
On Sunday, rockets were reportedly fired at US forces at Ain al-Asad Airbase in Iraq.
“Sabereen News, a Telegram news channel associated with the Iraqi Popular Mobilization Units, better known as Hashd al-Shaabi, reported that two fixed-wing combat drones laden with explosives had struck targets inside Victory base early on Tuesday,” Iran’s Press TV reported.
That Iran reported the attack via this channel means Tehran is likely behind the attack, and the report is a confirmation that it happened or that Iran approved it. How official sources said no attack actually took place and that the reports are disinformation.
“The report added that C-RAM systems as well as AN/TWQ-1 Avenger missile systems deployed at the base were not able to intercept the aircraft,” Press TV reported.
Press TV reported the attack on Tuesday, when it appears it happened on Monday.
“The development came less than two days after an unnamed Iraqi security force said a Katyusha rocket had landed at Ain al-Asad Airbase in Iraq’s western province of Anbar, located about 160 km. west of the capital Baghdad, without causing casualties,” the report said.
The drone attack is the latest use of drones, which pro-Iranian militias have increasingly displayed at military parades. A drone was used to attack a secret CIA hangar at an airport in Erbil, according to reports in April. There have been numerous other attacks.
The US has reduced its footprint in Iraq in the last year and a half, with US forces only at a few locations, such as Victory and Union III in Baghdad, near the US Embassy, and at al-Asad and Erbil. All these locations have come under attack, as well as US contractors at Balad Air Base.
The US returned to Iraq in 2014 to help fight ISIS. However, tensions with Iran have led to calls for the US to leave. Those calls began to increase in 2017 and have rapidly grown.
Iran has moved drones and ballistic missiles to Iraq in recent years. Drones have been flown from Iraq to attack Saudi Arabia, and Iraq is a conduit for weapons trafficking to Syria and then on to Hezbollah.
During Operation Guardian of the Walls, the May conflict between Israel and Hamas, a drone piloted from Iraq or Syria flew into Israeli airspace. Hamas used Iranian-style drones to try to attack Israel. The Iron Dome air-defense system shot at least one of them down.
On Monday, Israel showcased a new laser that can be used to shoot down drones, although it will take years for it to become operational.