During the first three days of President Donald Trump’s administration, coalition military forces conducted a total of 99 airstrikes targeting terrorists in Syria and Iraq. The bombing missions signaled the new president’s intention to fulfill a campaign promise to eradicate ISIS.
On Jan. 20 — the day Trump was sworn into office — the coalition carried out 26 strikes, according to a press release from U.S. Central Command. On Jan. 21 and Jan. 22, the coalition oversaw 31 and 42 strikes, respectively. The airstrikes were conducted as part of Operation Inherent Resolve, which Central Command describes as “the operation to eliminate the ISIL terrorist group and the threat they pose to Iraq, Syria, and the wider international community.”
“We will reinforce old alliances and form new ones — and unite the civilized world against radical Islamic terrorism.”
“We will reinforce old alliances and form new ones — and unite the civilized world against radical Islamic terrorism, which we will eradicate completely from the face of the Earth,” Trump said in his inaugural address Friday.
Thus far, the airstrikes against Islamic State militants show no signs of waning under the fledgling Trump administration.
Since the Senate confirmed Defense Secretary James Mattis to his position on Jan. 20, the Department of Defense has been preparing a comprehensive plan to defeat the Islamic State. The plan is expected to be delivered within the first 30 days of the new administration.
Mattis, who called for a “very hard blow” against radical Islamic terrorism during his Senate confirmation hearing, said that Islamic terrorists must not be allowed to operate in the Middle East with a “sense of invulnerability or invincibility.”
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“Every action we take will be designed to ensure our military is ready to fight today and in the future,” Mattis said in a statement released Jan. 20. “Recognizing that no nation is secure without friends, we will work with the State Department to strengthen our alliances. Further, we are devoted to gaining full value from every taxpayer dollar spent on defense, thereby earning the trust of Congress and the American people.”