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US airstrikes on Iranian-backed forces a 'good move': National security analyst


At least 17 people are reportedly dead after the u.s military carried out an airstrike on Iranian-backed forces in Syria it comes two weeks after an attack on American personnel in Iraq that killed one contractor and left others hurt including one u.s service member national security analyst dr Rebecca grant joins us now dr grant great to see you as always here's the statement from the pentagon on these strikes quote the operation sends an unambiguous message president Biden will act to protect American coalition personnel at the same time we have acted in a deliberate manner that aims to de-escalate the overall situation in both eastern Syria and Iraq. 

Is the biden administration accomplishing these varied goals dr grant yes this airstrike carried out by the f-15es is a good move by secretary of defense austin good move by u.s air power and it's directly written retaliation for the strike on the green zone and this just shows you that iran is all over this region with its terrorist convoy points and this was a good move by the u.s and our coalition partners let's go ahead and take a listen to what mike pompeo had to say on this last night you've got to protect your force you've got to establish deterrence we hope it really went after something that threatened the united states of america we've got to make sure that we deter the iranians every place weakness and appeasement of the iranians will only be rewarded with more terror from them do you think that this is the first step in the biden administration showing that they aren't going to be weak when it comes to this that they are showing enough force or do you think that they could show more i hope so this shows that they have to deal with the reality of iran on the ground and remember secretary of defense lloyd austin was the commander there against isis they carried out literally tens of thousands of airstrikes like this and this also shows that they're very closely watching with drones and other surveillance they see iraq trying to spread sorry iran trying to spread weapons around that area the iraqis watch this closely too so the reality is team biden has to deal with iran's destabilization in syria and across that region meantime dr grant president biden speaks to saudi king salman before the expected release of that u.s intel report on the killing of jamal khashoggi what are the ramifications to all of this for u.s saudi relations well i'm worried that there could be a wrong turn in u.s saudi relations saudi arabia is an important ally and while we were all horrified at the khashoggi killing saudi arabia hosted the g20 economic forum just a few months ago and right now i'm afraid that biden is a little out of step with our u.s allies like britain's boris johnson who talks regularly with both the prince and the king so we need to be very careful here and make sure that we preserve that important alliance and i'm worried that a wrong turn in u.s saudi relations plays a little bit into the hands of iran that's what i was actually just going to ask how far do you think that that would go i mean how happy would it make iran to see the united states coming out against saudi arabia oh iran will be happy because remember there is a cold war between iran and saudi arabia iran and militias like the ones that we saw attacking in iraq they regularly launch missiles into saudi arabia so coldness from the u.s towards saudi arabia plays directly into iran's hands and i worry that that shows iran that the biden team might be warming up to them that's not what we want we want a better agreement controls on the missiles and a wrong turn in u.s saudi relations this is no time to go down that road 15 seconds for this last answer what can the saudis do to make our lives difficult the saudis need to continue to become that leading regional power that they want to do and we don't want to see them slip closer to china for example so it's important to maintain that u.s saudi relationship it's really a pillar of security and for our military forces in the region okay dr rebecca grant with great insight there this morning thank you for joining us have a good day thank you thank you notice how china sneaks into it yeah everything situation.

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