US air force carpet-bombs ‘Isis-infested island’ in Iraq
Anti-Isis coalition says island was transit hub for fighters
The US air force has released a video showing fighter jets carpet-bombing an island it said was “infested” with Isis fighters.
The footage shows the small, tree-covered Qanus Island, in Iraq’s Saladin province, peppered with a series of huge explosions in quick succession.
A spokesperson for the US-led coalition to defeat Isis said the strikes on Tuesday were aimed at destroying a “major transit hub” for Isis forces moving between the Jazeera desert into the Mosul region. It was followed by a ground operation by Iraqi forces.
The bombing run was carried out by F15 and F35 fighter jets, which dropped 36,000kg of bombs on the “Daesh infested island”, a tweet from the spokesperson added.
“We’re denying Daesh [Isis] the ability to hide on Qanus Island,” said Major General Eric T Hill. “We’re setting the conditions for our partner forces to continue bringing stability to the region.”
Large bombing raids such as the one shown in the video have become a relatively rare occurrence since the Isis caliphate was defeated earlier this year, but the terror organisation is already regrouping in parts of Iraq.
Much as it did in the prelude to its meteoric rise in 2014, Isis has been carrying out targeted assassinations of local political, tribal, and security leaders – and indeed anyone who it deems to be cooperating with the Iraqi government.
The US-led mission to defeat Isis is continuing to work with Iraqi forces to go after the resurgent Isis pockets.