British air strikes targeting the Islamic State terrorists in Syria have killed or injured just seven targets, according to the estimates released by the Ministry of Defence today.
“We are playing a crucial role in a campaign that will take time and patience,” the UK government’s estimates released by the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) as part of a freedom of information request said.
The Times newspaper quoted defence sources as saying that the figures were only estimates, due to the difficulty of verifying casualties on the ground.
The newspaper also reported that none of the ISIS casualties were caused by Britain’s much-hyped Brimstone missiles, which had been seized upon by Prime Minister David Cameron to make the case for air strikes to Parliament in December 2015.
He had cited the unique precision capabilities of the Brimstone in targeting “the upper tiers of the ISIS leadership” in a memorandum arguing the case for British air strikes in Syria.
Brimstone is an air-launched ground attack missile developed for Britain’s Royal Air Force. It uses a millimetric wave active radar homing seeker to ensure accuracy even against moving targets.
Cameron had told MPs it made little sense for Britain to be bombing ISIS in Iraq and not in Syria.
Only one ISIS terrorist was killed or injured in Raqqa between the day of the vote on December 2 and January 29 this year, according to the official data.
That strike was by a Reaper drone and the other casualties were also in drone strikes, while one was hit in a strike by an RAF Typhoon or Tornado fighter jet using a Paveway IV bomb.
The ministry stressed that the UK strikes focused on ISIS’ military and revenue generating infrastructure, including oil fields that generate millions for its fighting machine.