US Pounds ISIS Targets in Syria

Airstrikes aimed at degrading group's capabilities
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Sep 22, 2014 9:20 PM CDT
Updated Sep 23, 2014 12:05 AM CDT
Pentagon: We've Begun Strikes on Syria
Pentagon press secretary Navy Rear Adm. John Kirby speaks during a briefing at the Pentagon.   (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)

The US and five Arab countries launched airstrikes late Monday on ISIS targets in Syria, the Pentagon says. Using a mix of manned aircraft—fighter jets and bombers—plus Tomahawk cruise missiles, the strikes were part of the expanded military campaign that President Obama authorized nearly two weeks ago in order to disrupt and destroy the militants. US officials say the airstrikes began around 8:30pm EDT and were conducted by the US, Bahrain, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, and the United Arab Emirates. The first wave of strikes finished about 90 minutes later, but the operation was expected to continue for several more hours, according to one official.

Some of the airstrikes were against the group's headquarters in Raqqa in eastern Syria. Military officials have said the US would target militants' command and control centers, resupply facilities, training camps, and other key logistical sites. "We will be prepared to strike ISIL targets in Syria that degrade ISIL's capabilities," Army Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told senators last week, using another one of the acronyms for the group. "This won't look like a shock-and-awe campaign, because that's simply not how ISIL is organized, but it will be a persistent and sustainable campaign." (More ISIS stories.)

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