An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Press Release | Dec. 21, 2016

December 21: Military airstrikes continue against ISIL terrorists in Syria and Iraq


December 21, 2016
Release # 20161221-01

SOUTHWEST ASIA — On Dec. 20, Coalition military forces conducted 25 strikes against ISIL terrorists in Syria and Iraq. In Syria, Coalition military forces conducted 20 strikes using attack, bomber, fighter and remotely piloted aircraft against ISIL targets. Additionally in Iraq, Coalition military forces conducted five strikes coordinated with and in support of the government of Iraq using attack and fighter aircraft as well as rocket artillery against ISIL targets.

.       Near Ar Raqqah, 11 strikes engaged four ISIL tactical units; destroyed three oil storage tanks, two oil well heads, two oil tanker trucks, two fighting positions, two tactical vehicles, a financial storage facility, an artillery system, and a VBIED; and damaged a supply route.
.       Near Dayr Az Zawr, four strikes destroyed seven oil well heads and an oil pump jack.
.       Near Palmyra, five strikes destroyed four ISIL-held tanks, three hardened aircraft shelters, an excavator, and an air defense artillery system.

.       Near Al Huwayjah, one strike engaged an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed two ISIL-held buildings, a tunnel, and a supply cache.
.       Near Mosul, three strikes destroyed eight fighting positions, five ISIL-held buildings, two land bridges, a VBIED factory, an artillery system, an anti-air artillery piece, and a weapons storage facility; damaged 11 supply routes; and suppressed a mortar team and two ISIL tactical units.
.       Near Tal Afar, one strike destroyed a weapons storage facility.

Strike assessments are based on initial reports. All aircraft returned to base safely.

A strike, as defined in the CJTF releases, means one or more kinetic events that occur in roughly the same geographic location to produce a single, sometimes cumulative effect for that location.

So having a single aircraft deliver a single weapon against a lone ISIL vehicle is one strike, but so is multiple aircraft delivering dozens of weapons against a group of buildings and vehicles and weapon systems in a compound, for example, having the cumulative effect of making that facility (or facilities) harder or impossible to use.

Accordingly, CJTF-OIR does not report the number or type of aircraft employed in a strike, the number of munitions dropped in each strike, or the number of individual munition impact points against a target. The information used to compile the daily strike releases is based on 'Z' or Greenwich Mean Time.
Ground-based artillery fired in counter-fire or in fire support to maneuver roles are not classified as a strike as defined by CJTF-OIR.

The strikes were conducted as part of Operation Inherent Resolve, the operation to eliminate the ISIL terrorist group and the threat they pose to Iraq, Syria, and the wider international community.

The destruction of ISIL targets in Syria and Iraq further limits the group's ability to project terror and conduct operations. Coalition nations which have conducted strikes in Iraq include Australia, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Jordan, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Coalition nations which have conducted strikes in Syria include Australia, Bahrain, Canada, Denmark, France, Jordan, the Netherlands, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom, and the United States.