January Marks Busiest Month of Entire Air Campaign Against ISIS

The US-led coalition in January had its busiest month of the entire air war against ISIS, dropping the most bombs in that span since the campaign kicked off in 2014. In January, US and international partner aircraft dropped 3,606 bombs in total. The previous high was 3,242 in Nov. 2015, according to statistics released Thursday by Air Forces Central Command. Aircraft flew 1,029 sorties with at least one weapon release in January, with tankers flying 964 sorties in which they offloaded 65 million pounds of fuel, according to AFCENT. Aircraft stayed busy as the US changed administrations, with the majority flown under former President Barack Obama and about one third of the month under President Donald Trump. US officials, including Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein, have said the pace has been high in striking ISIS and any new increase needs to be coordinated with the rest of the ground campaign. Meanwhile, in Afghanistan, aircraft conducted 54 airstrikes in 18 sorties. Tankers in Afghanistan flew 316 refueling sorties, offloading 12 million pounds of fuel.