"You've got to protect your force, you've got to establish deterrence," Pompeo explained to host Laura Ingraham. "We did this a couple of times, it was effective.
"I don't know what they struck or what targets they went after," Pompeo maintained. "I hope it just wasn't bombs in the desert. I hope it really went after something that threatened the United States of America. If not, it's useless."
The airstrikes targeted facilities near the Syria-Iraq border used by Iran-backed militia groups. The strike appeared more than a week after a rocket attack in northern Iraq that killed a civilian contractor and injured a U.S. service member and other coalition personnel.
In the first known military action by President Biden, the facilities were struck by American F15 fighter jets that targeted Iraqi border-based Shia militia groups, Kata'ib Hezbollah and Kata'ib Sayyid al Shuhada.
Both forces are believed to have received funding and military support from Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard.
a senior official explained that the strike was "shot across the bow" and a defensive strategy, meant to deter Iran and its militia from launching rockets at U.S. forces in the region, like the recent attacks in Iraq.
On Monday, a rocket attack in Baghdad's Green Zone seemed to target the U.S. The Embassy, though, caused no fatalities.
"We are outraged by the recent attacks," State Department spokesman Ned Price said Monday.
"When it comes to our response, we will respond in a way that is calculated, within our own timetable, and using a mix of tools at a time and place of our choosing," he added. "What will not do is lash out and risk an escalation that plays into the hands of Iran and contributes to their attempts to further destabilize Iraq."
"You don't need to get bogged down there to take an air strike," Pompeo continued. "I'm confident that we could do it ... getting in and getting out. 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."
The Trump administration carried out strikes against Syria territory in 2017 and 2018, the latter of which was carried out in coordination with France and the United Kingdom. Both strikes were related directly to chemical attacks linked to the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
In January 2020, the Trump administration likewise carried out a drone strike at Baghdad International Airport that eliminated the top Iranian General. Qassem Soleimani, the head of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps' (IRGC) elite Quds Force.