Now, our own troops are running out of vital resources after Obama pledged to fight, or as the Obama-speak diction goes, “contain,” ISIS. Washington Examiner’s Byron York reports that the United States ran out of ammo during a pivotal air-raid operation in which we were targeting ISIS oil trucks.
“American forces made one of their most effective hits against the Islamic State on Nov. 15, when U.S. planes destroyed 116 tanker trucks used by the terrorist organization to transport the stolen oil that is its financial lifeblood,” writes York. “American A-10 and C-130 warplanes targeted a group of about 300 trucks near Abu Kamal, in Syria. Given that the Islamic State is thought to have just over 1,000 trucks in its entire fleet, the group of 300 represented a huge target for U.S. planes.”
The air-raid, in particular, was highly significant to US strategic goals in the long-run. ISIS derives a large quantity of its operational budget from selling oil on the black market.
Shockingly, the Obama administration’s sole answer for our highly capable military’s apparent restraint against ISIS—taking out only 116 tankers rather than destroying all 300—was that our pilots lacked ammo. Summarizing one of the more perplexing press conferences in recent history, York writes (emphasis added):
At a Pentagon news conference last Wednesday, reporters wanted to know why American forces did not take out more than 116 trucks. Why not all 300, or something close to that? A U.S. official said the American attackers simply ran out of ammunition.
When asked why our fighters didn't "go back" to take out the rest of the tankers, Operation Inherent Resolve spokesman Col. Steve Warren responded, "Frankly, the aircraft expended 24 500-pound bombs, and all of their ammunition. So they — they shot everything they had and then they had to go home."
"If it's so important to cut off the oil shipments, the critical revenue source for ISIS, why did it take so long to take out 116 oil tanker trucks?" another reporter asked. York provided the following summary of Warren's response:
Warren explained that American officials were deeply worried about harming the truck drivers, who were working for the Islamic State but might not be ISIS themselves. U.S. officials settled on a plan to drop leaflets on the trucks about 45 minutes before the raid, warning the drivers that an attack was coming, while U.S. pilots flew low passes over the area.
Unfortunately, the Obama administration has made a habit of failing to take wartime military engagement seriously. President Obama has failed to arm nearly every ostensibly pro-American force on the ground fighting ISIS.
From the Kurds to the Free Syrian Army, the president has stood back and watched as bodies fall one after the other on the pavements of Aleppo, Damascus, Mosul, and Sinjar. However, the notion that the Pentagon would dispatch our own soldiers with depleted ammunition arsenals is indefensible.