Unusual Air Strike in Syria | World Defense

Unusual Air Strike in Syria

mtime7

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Another Syrian Terrorist Seemingly Killed By Hellfire Missile With Pop-Out Sword Blades (Updated)
The targeted strike took place less than 10 miles from where U.S. forces recently conducted a raid that led to the death of ISIS' leader al-Baghdadi.
BY JOSEPH TREVITHICKDECEMBER 3, 2019
A van reportedly targeted by a U.S. airstrike in Atmeh, Syria, on Dec. 3, 2019.
VIA @ELIZRAEL
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There reports of an unusual U.S. airstrike on a minivan in a city in northwestern Syria less than 10 miles from where American special operators conducted a raid just over a month ago that led to the death of brutal ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. It appears that this targeted strike also involved the use of an extremely specialized variant of the Hellfire missile, known as the AGM-114R9X, which substitutes the warhead found on standard models for a set of folding sword-like blades for minimum collateral damage.




SECRET HELLFIRE MISSILE WITH SWORD-LIKE BLADES MADE MYSTERIOUS STRIKE ON TERROR LEADER IN SYRIABy Joseph TrevithickPosted in THE WAR ZONE
OUR ANALYSIS OF NEW INFO AND VIDEO FROM THE RAID THAT KILLED ISIS HEAD AL BAGHDADIBy Joseph Trevithick and Tyler RogowayPosted in THE WAR ZONE
U.S. LAUNCHES RARE STRIKE ON AL QAEDA IN WESTERN SYRIA AMID SHIFTING REGIONAL AGENDABy Joseph TrevithickPosted in THE WAR ZONE
WAS A NEW TYPE OF DRONE-LAUNCHED WEAPON USED TO KILL AL QAEDA'S #2 MAN?By Tyler RogowayPosted in THE WAR ZONE
HOW A SECRETIVE SPECIAL OPERATIONS TASK FORCE IS TAKING THE FIGHT TO ISISBy Joseph TrevithickPosted in THE WAR ZONE
The strike reportedly occurred in Atmeh, which is situated in Syria's Idlib province. The city is less than five miles from the Turkish border and lies fewer than 10 miles northwest of Barisha, where Al Baghdadi's compound was located. There are reports that two individuals in the van died, but their identities and if they are affiliated with any known terrorist groups are unclear at the time of writing. There is one report that at least one person who was killed belonged to Hayat Tahrir Al Sham, or HTS, a group that splintered from Al Qaeda's franchise in Syria in 2017.



GOOGLE MAPS
A map showing the general location of Atmeh and Barisha, to the south, within Syria.


GOOGLE MAPS
A closer view showing the relative proximity of Atmeh and Barisha, to its south.
Pictures that have emerged of the van so far offer limited views of the damage, but it is clear that the weapon involved did not have a traditional warhead. The van in Atmeh shows extensive damage toward the front passenger side, but limited damage otherwise the rest of the vehicle. There are reports that the men inside the vehicle were "mashed" inside by the impact.


Elizabeth Tsurkov

✔@Elizrael

· 7h

The international Coalition carried out an air strike near Atmeh, northwestern Idlib, apparently with the R9X Hellfire missile, which does not have an explosive charge. The areas is controlled by Hayat Tahrir al-Sham. More on the missile: http://bit.ly/2JA3eJb
View image on Twitter
Elizabeth Tsurkov

✔@Elizrael


According to HTS WhatsApp groups, the person killed is Abu Ahmad al-Muhajir, a foreign trainer of the elite force of the HTS, "The Red Bands"

14

10:13 AM - Dec 3, 2019
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Wassim Nasr

✔@SimNasr

https://twitter.com/SimNasr/status/1201884658415362050

#Syrie véhicule frappé par drone US à Atmeh #Idleb à la frontière avec la #Turquie/ vu les dégâts il pourrait s’agir du nouveau #Hellfire dépourvu de charge explosive & équipé de lames pour minimiser les dommages collatéraux/ utilisé une 1ere x contre Abou al-Khayr al-Masri d’#AQ
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8:23 AM - Dec 3, 2019
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MrRevinsky@Kyruer
· 10h

Replying to @Kyruer
#Syria #Idlib
Footage showing #SyAF dropping a barrel bomb on urban areas in Ahsim town.

Embedded video

MrRevinsky@Kyruer


#Syria #Idlib
Uknown warplanes have airstriked a vehicle in Atmeh, Northern Idlib.
The bodies of 2 (?) men have been mashed but the vehicle has not exploded. It's not clear then if this is the result of an #US assassination attempt with another #US R9X missile.
View image on TwitterView image on Twitter

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9:18 AM - Dec 3, 2019
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There are clear similarities here to a strike that killed Abu Khayr Al Masri, then Al Qaeda's number two leader, as he drove in his car in Al Mastouma, Syria, in 2017. This city is also in Idlib and is some 30 miles south of Atmeh. Al Masri's car also suffered the most damage toward the front passenger side and is known to have been the work of an AGM-114R9X, which has reportedly been used extremely sparingly. The War Zone was the first to call attention to the likelihood that a previously unknown munition was used in that strike, which turned out to be the case.
Without seeing the top of the van in Atmeh, which could show telltale signs of the AGM-114R9X's blades striking the vehicle, and with such little additional information about the individuals who died in the strike, it is impossible to say for certain who may have been responsible and exactly weapons they may have been employed.
However, the similarities between the two strikes strongly point to the AGM-114R9X being employed. The pictures of the van do show it in a relatively confined urban area, where a weapon capable of causing extremely minimal collateral damage would be ideal, as well.


Replying to @N_Waters89
I remember puzzling over these cuts for ages trying to work out what had hit the car of Abu Khayr al-Masri, deputy leader of Al-Qaeda.

Turns out it was a Hellfire missle with fucking swords attached to it.
View image on TwitterView image on Twitter

135 people are talking about this



We also know that U.S. unmanned aircraft, such as MQ-9 Reapers, which can carry Hellfire missiles and are known to carry out targeted strikes, operate in this region of Syria. On Nov. 22, 2019, photojournalist Rami Al Sayed caught a glimpse of a Reaper flying in the area of Jindires in Syria, a town in Aleppo province that is located around six miles north of Atmeh.
The particular aircraft was carrying four Hellfire missiles, a range-extending drop tank, and two other unknown pods. It is very likely that this latter pair of stores contained a mixture of sensors, such as radars with ground moving target indicator (GMTI) and synthetic aperture functionality and geo-location systems to zero in on targeted cellular or satellite telephone signals, as well as advanced data links.



RAMI AL SAYED/AFP VIA GETTY IMAGES
An MQ-9 Reaper seen flying near Jindires on Nov. 22, 2019.
Tracking and targeting terrorists based on the location of their phones is a known U.S. tactic and it would not be surprising that American unmanned aircraft, as well as manned platforms and assets on the ground, have been combing the area for those signals in the aftermath of the raid on Baghdadi's compound. The Pentagon said that operation resulted in the seizure of a significant amount of intelligence that would be valuable in identifying and tracking down other major ISIS figures.
On Dec. 3, 2019, U.S. President Donald Trump said that the raid had produced "good information," including lists of ISIS financiers. Trump was speaking to reporters during a press conference with French President Emmanuel Macron in London on the sidelines of the annual NATO summit, which began that day.


Chad Garland

✔@chadgarland

https://twitter.com/chadgarland/status/1201895924399783938

Listening now to Trump's press conference with Macron. Trump says the US has lists of who made contributions to ISIS.
"We have now lists ... some of these people are wealthy people," he said, also citing "good information" from raid that killed Baghdadi.https://www.stripes.com/news/europe/trump-blasts-very-very-nasty-comments-by-french-president-as-nato-summit-begins-1.609586 …


"I can't tell you anything about what we took off the site. You'll appreciate that," U.S. Marine Corps General Frank McKenzie, head of U.S. Central Command, told had also reporters during a briefing about the raid on Oct. 30, 2019. "We're going to exploit that, and we expect it to help us as we go forward."
In the immediate aftermath of Baghdadi's death, the United States also killedISIS' then-number two leader, Abu al-Hassan al-Muhajir, in another airstrike. The terrorist group subsequently named Abu Ibrahim al-Hashemi al-Quraishi as its new leader. In Tweet on Nov. 1, 2019, Trump indicated that he was also known to U.S. intelligence agencies, saying "ISIS has a new leader. We know exactly who he is!"



Given reports that a member of Hayat Tahrir Al Sham (HTS) died in the van, it is also possible that, if the United States did indeed carry out the strike in Atmeh, that it was targeting members of another group. If that's the case, this would be the first reported U.S. strike aimed specifically at HTS since 2017.


Elizabeth Tsurkov

✔@Elizrael

· 6h

Replying to @Elizrael
According to HTS WhatsApp groups, the person killed is Abu Ahmad al-Muhajir, a foreign trainer of the elite force of the HTS, "The Red Bands"
Elizabeth Tsurkov

✔@Elizrael


A note used for crossing HTS checkpoints appears to confirm the identity of the person killed. If true, this is the first Coalition strike against HTS in 2 years - the US increasingly shifted to targeting more radical factions (ISIS, AQ, Ansar al-Tawhid).
View image on Twitter

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10:37 AM - Dec 3, 2019
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The U.S. military also acknowledged a strike on leaders of Al Qaeda's present Syrian franchise, known as AQ-S, in Aleppo province on June 30, 2019. This is to say nothing of the strike on Al Masri back in 2017.



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The future of U.S.-led operations in Syria, in general, had been unclear following Turkey launching an intervention into areas along its shared border with the country in October 2019. This operation targeted the American-supported and predominantly Kurdish Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and prompted U.S. personnel to hastily withdraw from many forward operating locations.
Despite Trump's announcement of a total withdrawal of American forces from the country, the United States has since bolstered certain positions, in eastern Syria, notably in and around numerous oil-producing areas. This has included the deployment of mechanized infantry from the Army National Guard with Bradley Infantry Fighting Vehicles into Dier Ez Zor province. The U.S.-led coalition fighting ISIS in both Syria and Iraq said in November that it had resumed operations against that terrorist group in that region.



US ARMY
Elements of the 30th Armored Brigade Combat Team, a unit of the US Army National Guard, including M2 Bradley Infantry Fighting Vehicles, on patrol in Syria.
The Syrian conflict otherwise remains very fluid, especially with the new complexities that the Turkish intervention has brought, including a deal with Russia to secure a buffer zone along Syria's northern border. How all of this has impacted activities targeting the terrorist group's leader further West is unclear.
The apparent U.S. targeted strike in Atmeh would indicate that the United States continues to actively pursue ISIS and other terrorist leaders in western Syria despite the shifting battle lines in the country and uncertainties in over-arching U.S. policy toward the conflict.
UPDATE: 4:55pm EST—
Nick Waters, a senior investigator at Bellingcat, who was first to notice the blade strikes from the AGM-114R9X on Abu Khayr Al Masri's car after the strike in 2017, has found evidence of similar damage in the strike in Atmeh. This provides even more evidence that this was the missile employed in this strike.
 

Scorpion

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probably Israel carried out the strike. They have been do so every now and then since the beginning of the Syrian civil war.
 

Falcon29

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Lol, what are we doing in Syria? Are we really just trying to test some new weapons there? What happened to the political process and helping the Syrians with their revolution? Basically we are doing no different than Russia, Assad, HTS, Iran, Kurds, and others in Syria who are trying to advance their interests at the whole nations expense.
 

mtime7

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Lol, what are we doing in Syria? Are we really just trying to test some new weapons there? What happened to the political process and helping the Syrians with their revolution? Basically we are doing no different than Russia, Assad, HTS, Iran, Kurds, and others in Syria who are trying to advance their interests at the whole nations expense.
The US went there to stop ISIS, they have done a pretty good job, somewhere along the line it turned into some kind of regime change operation that failed, the US shouldn't be trying regime change. Right now it appears they are targeting terrorist of opportunity. Hopefully they will leave soon
 

Falcon29

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The US went there to stop ISIS, they have done a pretty good job, somewhere along the line it turned into some kind of regime change operation that failed, the US shouldn't be trying regime change. Right now it appears they are targeting terrorist of opportunity. Hopefully they will leave soon
The US did not go there to stop ISIS, Syrian army and Russia could have done it themselves. We could have helped Iraq defeat ISIS and limit it to that. You need to understand that decision makers don't care about atrocities or taking the ethical position on such conflicts. It's all about geopolitical interests. Which is why we are carving out a pro-Israel state for the Kurds in eastern Syria. And we are not leaving for at least another 20 years.

As for this strike here, it's irrelevant to me. It's just a continuation of the never ending war on terror which is costly for our country and damages our reputation heavily. It's better for us to allow the locals to take the lead and assist them quietly behind the scenes. If we are trying to help improve this region instead of destroying it.

And you're wrong, in the beginning we professed to support the Syrian revolution but on the ground did nothing to help the locals. We only picked some rebels to train to do nothing but be a thorn in Hezbollah's side. Again just to help Israel. It seems our whole middle east policy revolves around giving advantages and dominance for Israel. So I think the local people need to destroy that savage terrorist country since it is the reason for why the US is bombing the whole area and hindering the development of a place that desperately needs an end to conflict and sanctions.
 

mtime7

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I think you have Israel on the brain, for everything it revolves around Israel for you. That just isn't the case
 

Falcon29

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I think you have Israel on the brain, for everything it revolves around Israel for you. That just isn't the case
Show me one example where we assisted in the development of the region or supported a positive force in the region. You will not be able to. All we have done is sell weapons to dictators, conduct air strikes in almost every country in the region, we did not develop any army in the region for conventional warfare tactics. It is all anti-militant warfare we train them in because we don't want them to learn how to fight in a conventional war especially since it will interrupt Israel's plans for the whole region. We condition relations with Arab states on normalization with Israel, you can see plenty of this in the news right now. We sanction Arab banks or any Arab entities that help Palestinians.

So sorry to say so but it is the case. We are favoring 7 million Jewish migrants over the rest of the 400 million people of the region. We don't help them with their security or infrastructure like we do with Israel. Those people have many educated young adults looking for jobs and an opportunity to put their education to use but they can't do it because of dictators or foreign powers like the US who hinder the development. The Arabs can develop advanced weapons programs including ballistic missile programs and can acquire nuclear weapons if the US didn't have a double standard by allowing Israel to develop such weapons but threatening war against Arab nations who do it.

So like I said, people need to destroy that shit hole terrorist country known as Israel in order to free themselves from dictators that the US supports. Once they do so, then the US has no good options to try continuing enabling Jewish supremacy in the Middle East. A place where Jews have always been a minority and were never from the Levant region in the first place. They hardly make up the semites as well, yet they patent that term 'anti-semite'. Arabs make up majority of semites.
 

Scorpion

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Lol, what are we doing in Syria? Are we really just trying to test some new weapons there? What happened to the political process and helping the Syrians with their revolution? Basically we are doing no different than Russia, Assad, HTS, Iran, Kurds, and others in Syria who are trying to advance their interests at the whole nations expense.
The Syrian opposition are in Saudi Arabia since the beginning of their formation but I think Saudi Arabia as a state is no longer interested in whole Syrian issue.
 

mtime7

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This Photo Proves How The Hellfire Missile That Uses Blades Instead Of Explosives Works
This core of the AGM-114R9X missile, with its swing-out sword-like blades, is exactly how this gruesome weapon goes about plying its deadly trade.
BY TYLER ROGOWAYDECEMBER 3, 2019
VIA @N_WATERS89
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twitter.com/Aviation_Intel



After the most recent known use of the AGM-114R9X Hellfire missile, a weapon that uses blades instead of explosives to kill its target with minimal collateral damage, literally smashing and slicing through them, evidence of exactly how the bizarre weapon works has come to light. Imagery from the scene of the attack, located less than 10 miles from where Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was killed in Syria, shows what appears to be the core of the weapon and its deadly appendages. It appears to be a gruesome, but stunningly effective device.




at the top of this story, shows a thick central hub structure that would act as a penetrator with six swing-out skeletonized blades. Basically, anything in the radius of the blades would die.
The standard AGM-114 flies at roughly 1,000 miles per hour. It isn't clear if this version of the weapon hits those speeds, but there is no indication otherwise. It's unclear when exactly the blades deploy during use, but it is likely that they extend out from the missile via fairings that pop-off shortly before its flight ends or swing-out through slots in the missile's body. A fuze system or direct inertia system could deploy them once the missile makes contact with a surface, as well.

The Hellfire is just over five feet long, with its warhead section taking up the central area of the missile's tube-like body. You can see how this payload would slot into where the explosive warhead would otherwise go in the image below:



STAHLKOCHER/WIKICOMMONS
AGM-114 internal configuration.
The payload area is roughly a foot and a half long and let's say the swords are roughly the same length, this would provide about a three and a half foot diameter kill zone, which is similar to what we see in the images of the vehicles that have been struck. It is the ultimate precision air-to-ground weapon—surgical both in metaphor and application.


Nick Waters@N_Waters89
· May 9, 2019

Replying to @N_Waters89
I remember puzzling over these cuts for ages trying to work out what had hit the car of Abu Khayr al-Masri, deputy leader of Al-Qaeda.

Turns out it was a Hellfire missle with fucking swords attached to it.
View image on TwitterView image on Twitter

149 people are talking about this



It would be highly interesting to see how this almost comic-book-like adaptation of the AGM-114 came to be. We definitely know there are placeswhere these types of payloads are tested and the need for such a weapon obvious, but how such melding of old and new weaponry came to be would be fascinating to understand. In fact, I am just as interested in all the pitches that didn't get selected considering how wild the one that did is.
The image at least verifies how many of us thought this system would work and fits with the few non-attributed descriptions of its general concept of operations.
 

mtime7

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Looks like another strike, this in Alepo


 

mtime7

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can anyone interpret what they are saying in that video?
 

Scorpion

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can anyone interpret what they are saying in that video?
They say the car belongs to Ahrar Al Sham, Turkish backed group in Syria. It looks like the missile did explode!
 

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