Airpower Bank Heist

US-led airstrikes on ISIS financial centers in Iraq and Syria have destroyed “hundreds of millions” of the group’s funding, forcing ISIS to cut wages and trim its budgets, said Army Col. Steve Warren, spokesman for the Combined Joint Task Force-Operation Inherent Resolve. Warren could not give an exact figure for the financial burden caused by the airstrikes, just that it is in the hundreds of millions and that the coalition is “putting a dent in the wallet” of the organization. For months, the coalition has targeted ISIS’s oil infrastructure and financial centers, including strikes where the coalition could see money “fluttering” in the wind after a building was destroyed, Warren said during a Feb. 17 briefing. The Associated Press reported ISIS is facing a cash shortage, and is now using American dollars to pay bills. It also has lowered the price for releasing a hostage to $500 a person. Salaries have been cut in half in the group’s stronghold of Raqqa, Syria, and electricity is rationed, according to the AP.