The Florida man was shot down last month while conducting air missions for one party in Libya’s civil war.
The militant group’s Yemen branch rose to prominence at the beginning of the country’s civil war and is considered one of the Islamic State’s smaller franchises.
The confusion reinforced concerns about the administration’s credibility during a military crisis.
The action was in retaliation for the downing of a surveillance drone in the Strait of Hormuz, officials say.
Some officials question whether pressure on Iran exceeds President Trump’s specific goal of preventing the country from acquiring a nuclear weapon.
Patrick Shanahan served for six months as acting defense secretary.
The two tankers were targeted early Thursday in what observers said marked a serious escalation in the strategic waterway used to ship oil from the Persian Gulf.
Shanahan said the U.S. will block the sale of 100 aircraft to Turkey if Ankara proceeds with the purchase of the air defense system from Moscow.
In the Trump era, Pentagon has clamped down on interactions with the news media and restricted information about overseas operations.
The phrase 'climate change' appeared in a draft Pentagon report 23 times. The final version used it once.