Exactly one year earlier, the US-led coalition launched its first airstrikes against the self-proclaimed Islamic State in Iraq. Since then, nearly 6,000 airstrikes have been carried out in both Iraq and Syria, with more than $3.2 billion cost in total.
The first airstrikes were intended to rescue thousands of the Yazidi refugees who have been besieged by the terror group in Mount Sinjar. The aerial bombardment then expanded to slow ISIS rapid advance towards Baghdad and Erbil in northern Iraq.
On September the campaign, publically known as Operation Inherent Resolve, included neighboring Syria to check the group’s supply routes and manpower.
According to the U.S Central Command, the US-led coalition has conducted 5,946 airstrikes, 2,657 in Iraq and 2,289 in Syria. The aerial campaign targeted 3,262 ISIS buildings, 119 commandeered tanks, 1,202 vehicles and 2,577 fighting positions.
It is believed that ISIS has lost control of nearly 25% of the populated areas it controlled in both countries.
The Pentagon said thousands of ISIS fighters including top leaders have been killed, vehicles and leadership’s operations damaged in the campaign. However, it has been admitted that the group managed to sustain its ability to count on between 20,000 and 30,000 fighters, thus replacing its battlefield losses.
Figures released by the Pentagon claimed 15,000 ISIS supporters have been killed by the airstrikes. In a parallel context, a UK-based monitoring group said that approximately 591 civilians were also killed in the drone strikes.