The return of shock and awe: US warplanes led by F-35 stealth jets drop 40 TONS of laser-guided bombs on ‘ISIS infested Iraqi island’ to destroy terrorist stronghold and stop flow of fighters from Syria
- F-15 and F-35 stealth jets took part in bombing run against ‘ISIS infested island’
- 40 tons of explosives were dropped on Qanus Island, which sits in the Tigris River 50 miles south of Mosul, in order to destroy hiding spots
- Iraqi special forces troops were then sent in to clear the area of jihadi fighters
- US military said island is used as a ‘transit hub’ for ISIS fighters from Syria
The US Air Force has dropped 40 tons of laser-guided bombs on what it called an ‘ISIS infested island’ in Iraq
F-15 and F-35 jets were used to bomb Qanus Island, which sits in the middle of the Tigris River in central Iraq, in order to destroy hiding places for jihadi fighters.
Colonel Myles B Caggins, spokesman for Operation Joint Resolve, tweeted: ‘Here’s what it looks like when US Air Force F15 and F35 jets drop 36,000 kg of bombs on a Daesh infested island.’
Daesh is a derogatory Arabic term for ISIS.
Troops from the 2nd Iraqi Special Operations Forces Battalion were then sent in to clear the area, which was described as a ‘transit hub’ for ISIS fighters coming from Syria into the Mosul, Makhmour, and Kirkuk regions of Iraq.
Dramatic video of the bombing raid shows the island lit up from end-to-end with explosions that leave virtually no part of it untouched.
Further video taken by Iraqi troops on the ground shows huge plumes of smoke rising into the sky as the island is pounded by explosions.
‘We’re denying Daesh the ability to hide on Qanus Island,’ said Maj Gen Eric T. Hill, Special Operations Joint Task Force – Operation Inherent Resolve, commander.
‘We’re setting the conditions for our partner forces to continue bringing stability to the region.’
Authorities said they dropped the bombs on the island to ‘disrupt Daesh the ability to hide in the thick vegetation’.
More video shows two rib boats filled with Iraqi soldiers moving upriver towards the island following the bombing run.
Coalition forces are still conducting ground clearance operations to destroy any remaining ISIS fighters on the island as part of operation Black Earth, a spokesman for the Iraqi Counter-Terrorism Service said.
ISIS captured large swathes of Iraq and Syria in 2014 before declaring a so-called Caliphate across the region.