Cana­dian jets hit­ting few tar­gets in Syria

Cape Breton Post - - CANADA -

The Cana­dian mil­i­tary re­ported 18 new air strikes against tar­gets be­long­ing to the Is­lamic State in Iraq and the Le­vant, but none in the latest round in­volve mis­sions over Syria.

In the three months since Par­lia­ment granted an ex­pan­sion of the air cam­paign, only three at­tacks have been con­ducted against what the Harper gov­ern­ment some­times de­scribed as the heart of the ex­trem­ist move­ment.

The U.S.-led coali­tion has stepped up both the level of bomb­ing and the public re­la­tions cam­paign since Is­lamic State forces dealt a sur­prise blow to the Iraqi gov­ern­ment and seized took con­trol of the strate­gi­cally im­por­tant city of Ra­madi.

Cana­dian navy Capt. Paul For­get says it’s clear that the tempo of CF-18 mis­sions has in­creased along with its al­lies, but he of­fered no ex­pla­na­tion for the dearth of Syr­ian mis­sions.

“All air strikes, whether in Syria or Iraq, are as­signed by the tar­get­ing cell (at coali­tion head­quar­ters in Qatar),” he said.

“Those strikes are as­signed to var­i­ous na­tions for a va­ri­ety of rea­sons.”

Ear­lier this year, the coun­try’s top mil­i­tary com­man­der, Gen. Tom Law­son, at­trib­uted the low num­ber of strikes in Syria to the fact, un­like Iraq, there were few friendly forces on the ground to help pin­point tar­gets.

For­get would not say whether that fac­tor con­tin­ues to limit Cana­dian in­volve­ment in the cam­paign.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.