The United States military pounded an “ISIS-infested island” into oblivion in northern Iraq on Tuesday, according to a statement and a video released by the U.S.-led coalition battling the Islamic terrorist organization.
“We’re denying [ISIS] the ability to hide on Qanus Island,” Maj. Gen. Eric T. Hill, Commander of the Special Operations Joint Task Force, said. “We’re setting the conditions for our partner forces to continue bringing stability to the region.”
“U.S. jets have doubled the amount of bombs targeting ISIS in the past month, according to new strike data released from the U.S. Air Force,” Fox 32 reported. “In Afghanistan, U.S. strikes have also picked up. According to the newly released data, American jets have dropped 28 percent more bombs on Taliban and an ISIS-affiliate in August compared to the previous month.”
The massive strike against ISIS comes as the U.S. military appears to be ramping up its attacks against the Taliban in Afghanistan after potential peace talks fell apart as a result of the Taliban killing a U.S. soldier.
“Unbeknownst to almost everyone, the major Taliban leaders and, separately, the President of Afghanistan, were going to secretly meet with me at Camp David on Sunday,” Trump tweeted. “They were coming to the United States tonight. Unfortunately, in order to build false leverage, they admitted to an attack in Kabul that killed one of our great great soldiers, and 11 other people. I immediately cancelled the meeting and called off peace negotiations. What kind of people would kill so many in order to seemingly strengthen their bargaining position?”
“They didn’t, they only made it worse! If they cannot agree to a ceasefire during these very important peace talks, and would even kill 12 innocent people, then they probably don’t have the power to negotiate a meaningful agreement anyway,” Trump continued. “How many more decades are they willing to fight?”
On Sunday, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that the United States responded to the Taliban’s attack by killing over 1,000 members of the Taliban. Pompeo told Fox News’ Chris Wallace:
President Trump has made clear he wants to reduce risks to Americans. You showed the pictures last night from the dignified transfer, the remains of Sergeant First Class Barreto. I was out there with his family.
It’s a reminder to all of us of the enormous costs and sacrifice these heroes make for us each and every day. President Trump is trying to reduce that risk. At the same time, he’s committed to making sure that we reduce the risk that terror should ever strike the United States from Afghanistan again.
And so, we’ve been working for months for a peace and reconciliation deal. We’ve been working with the Afghan government, working with other Afghan leaders, been working with the Taliban to try and reduce the level of violence to commence — and you would know this, Chris, well, we’ve been trying to get the Afghans to talk to each other, this basic idea for almost two decades now, and we had their — the Taliban’s commitment to do that. We had their commitment to break from Al-Qaeda publicly, and they would obviously have to deliver on that commitment.
So, we’ve made real progress, but in the end, the Taliban overreached. They forgot that America is always going to protect its interests — the commander, the commander of Resolute Support and the NATO forces there are still at this hard. We killed over a thousand Taliban just in the last 10 days.
And while this isn’t a war of attrition, the American people should know we will continue to apply the appropriate pressure to make sure that we’re never struck with terror again from Afghanistan.