It's true, we have laid down on ISIS a withering, accurate and extremely deadly rain of missiles and bombs. Particularly in the last 10 years, the technology has reached a point where we can hit targets with incredible accuracy and surveil the battlefield with drones that orbit it for days just watching and silently observing. The West's technological advantage in air power is truly impresive.(Original post by mercuryman)
Woah man, I knew western warfare against ISIS was intense but I did not imagine it to be this deadly. I'm glad that ISIS is slowly getting extinct. At this rate they'll be exterminated at least within 5 or so years, no?
In terms of how long it will take to finish them off, I suspect by this time next year they will no longer have territory in Iraq. The situation in Syria is more fluid. We've killed about 30,000 of them, but in the last two years they managed to recruit around the same number of people. I mean, even just from Europe around 6,000 young Muslims travelled there to join them.
At their height in 2014 they were getting around 2,000 foreign volunteers per month. The current estimates is that it has slowed to around 200 per month, they really only have one remaining supply line to the outside world, which is over the Turkish border at Jarabulus but that supply road is surrounded on both sides and it's a gauntlet.
We've also taken out a lot of top ISIS commanders, and they're starting to get so paranoid that they've executed a lot of their own people in futile hunts for "spies". They don't realise we're probably getting our information electronically. The absolute top ISIS commanders can't spend a lot of time strategising and commanding because they have to constantly be on the move to avoid being clipped in a drone strike; they usually sleep in a different house each night.
The Kurds and Iraqis also say the quality of ISIS soldiers has gone down massively in the last year; all the best battle-hardened troops have been wiped out in air strikes and they say that now they're often facing 15 year olds and 60 year olds. A similar thing has happened with ISIS commanders; in some ISIS command areas, we've taken out the top guy like four or five times in a row; once you get promoted to that spot your life expectancy is measured in months. It also means that most of the really tough, smart operators are dead and have been replaced by much less experienced fighters. That's one reason ISIS hasn't been able to mount a single major offensive for 14 months now.
Absolutely. The US has lost 3 special forces soldiers in this campaign, they've lost over 30,000. An exchange rate of 1 of ours for 10,000 of theirs is unprecedented in the history of all human conflict. In terms of morale, we are getting a lot of reports of ISIS soldiers refusing to fight, and mass executions of fighters who retreat or who are refusing to go to the front. ISIS is having to use total brutality to motivate them now; the idealism is goneIt makes you wonder after all these losses how they still manage to carry their morale to fight on. True we westerners face a few casualties by them every now and then (Thank god Britain has been safe during all this mess), but when we look at it hollistically they're actually getting buttraped back home.
In terms of managing to carry on, if the West were the ones on the ground this would have been over 9 months ago. As I said above they managed to recruit around 30,000 people, and have also started conscripting people from the lands they control. I have to concede they have been extraordinarily resilient, but the ISIS of August 2016 is a shadow of the ISIS of July 2014. After the summer is over (and those crazy 50 degrees every day weather in Iraq), the Kurds and Iraqis will go back on the offensive and I expect it's pretty much over for ISIS in Iraq (in their final stronghold of Mosul).
Thanks dude, really appreciate it I think it's important that there's accurate information out there about what we are doing and what we're not doing in Iraq and Syria. I think unfortunately the media doesn't do a good job of explaining these things, and also it's hard to convey just how revolutionary the technological advances in the last 10 years have been in terms of allowing us to hit targets with amazing precision and avoid civilian casualties.Thanks for the explanation by the way! Repped.
Our campaign against ISIS has been very effective, and we've managed to do it with almost no casualties to ourselves. It's not the fastest route to victory (going in on the ground ourselves), but it's methodical and systematic and steady in doing this every day, day-in day-out. We've spent money, not lives, this time around. And it's money well-spent, both pragmatically and morally. Pragmatically, it would be a nightmare if ISIS were able to become a permanent entity. Morally, we should do all we can to help out the Kurds particularly. This way we are able to contribute our particular speciality (the technology, the air power) without sending in lots of ground troops and angering the Middle East by seeing lots of Western soldiers on the ground in Muslim lands
RAF obliterates former Saddam palace used by ISIS
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