Op-Ed: US drops 80,000 pounds of explosives on tiny island in Iraq

Posted Sep 11, 2019 by Ken Hanly
US warplanes have virtually destroyed the tiny island of Qanus in the Salahuddin Province of Iraq in the Tigris river. US officials claim the island is a hiding place for ISIS terrorist.
The United States has since late 2014 led a coalition against the Islamic State group in Iraq and Sy...
The United States has since late 2014 led a coalition against the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria
Senior Airman Matthew Bruch, US Air Forces Central Command/AFP/File
Bringing stability through destruction
US officials claim the attacks will bring stability to the region. The attacks will disrupt ISIS fighters activity in the region because mostly all vegetation where ISIS forces could hide has been obliterated by the attacks.
Iraqi forces also took part in the attack as they stationed boats near the island with a view to shooting anything on the island that was still alive after the bombing. Locals in the area report that there was repeated firing late into the day.
A US Central Command news release describes the attack: "Coalition Forces and the Iraqi Counter-Terrorism Service deny Daesh a safe haven during air strikes on Qanus Island located in the Salah ad Din Province, Sept. 10, 2019. Follow-on ground clearance operations are currently taking place by the 2nd Iraqi Special Operations Forces Battalion to destroy a major transit hub for Daesh members moving from Syria and the Jazeera desert into Mosul, Makhmour, and the Kirkuk region. “We’re denying Daesh the ability to hide on Qanus Island,” said Maj. Gen. Eric T. Hill, Special Operations Joint Task Force – Operation Inherent Resolve, commander. “We’re setting the conditions for our partner forces to continue bringing stability to the region.” " The term "Daesh" is a common name for ISIS. US F-35A and F-15 Strike Eagles were used in the attacks.
The appended video shows explosions from the attack.
No report on casualties
No estimates of how many ISIS fighters were on the island or how many may have been killed by the attacks have been reported as yet. Officials so far have been completely silent on the issue. There have been no reports as to what the locals may feel about the attack. It seems that the US considers destruction a favored means to create stability. It is not clear how much disruption destruction of the island will cause to ISIS movements through the area.
US had less attacks on ISIS than in 2017
According to recent statistics published by the US Air Force Central Command 218 total munitions were dropped on ISIS targets last month. This compares with the peak of 5,075 in the month of August in 2017. In 2017 a record number of bombs 39,577 was used against the group.