Airstrike’s hit Syria
Late Monday evening, the United States and Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Jordan and Qatar started a military strike against Islamic State strongholds in Syria. The U.S and its allies struck more than a dozen sites overnight after intelligence showed attacks against American interests were imminent. The U.S.S Arleigh Burke and USS Philippine Sea were operating from international water as the ships launched Tomahawk missiles while attacks were also carried out by bombers and fighter aircraft.
The airstrike hit in Syria for the first time, hitting targets in targets the militant headquarters in Raqqa and on the border of the terror group ISIS or ISIL. According to the Department of Defense who issued a statement earlier this morning, “The strikes destroyed or damaged multiple ISIL targets in the vicinity of Ar Raqqah, Dayr az Zawr, Al Hasakah, and Abu Kamal and included ISIL fighters, training compounds, headquarters and command and control facilities, storage facilities, a finance center, supply trucks and armed vehicles.” A new debate will begin with these air strikes as to whether the President needed Congressional approval as this action could be consider a war like activity.
In the attacks the U. S has brought to attention to the people of the other terror group in Syria called “the Khorasan group”. This group is considered an off shoot of al Qaeda, and that this group was close to an imminent attack on U.S interests. U.S. Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, stated last week that this group could be a more direct threat than ISIL or ISIS. He then spoke for the first time about the leader of this group and named him publicly Muhsin al-Fadhli. He is a Kuwaiti who has been a 20-year-old member of Osama bin Laden’s inner circle at the time of the 9/11 attacks. According to Clapper, al-Fadhi is now al Qaeda’s top man in Iran where he helps fund the terror campaign. The United States has now offered a $7-million reward for his capture.
According to U.S intelligence, two thirds of the estimated 30,000 ISIL fighters are based in Syria. The remainder have captured large parts of northern Iraq. Airstrikes against Iraq strongholds started in August and has since continued with about 190 airstrikes on ISIS targets. The U.S. military also stated this morning that the strikes against the Khorasan group targeted the group’s training camps, explosives production facility, communication building and command and control facilities. According to the Pentagon, the airstrikes against the Khorasan group was “to disrupt the imminent attack plotting against the United States and Western interests conducted by a network of seasoned al Qaeda veterans.” The U.S. military said that it will continue to bomb ISIS targets in Syria and Iraq as needed.