US Airpower Hits Khorasan Group Again

For the first time since the opening days of airstrikes against ISIS targets in Syria, the Defense Department announced additional strikes on elements of the Khorasan Group. DOD officials said USAF B-1 bombers, remotely piloted aircraft, and F-16 fighters participated in the strike. On Nov. 6, US Central Command confirmed strikes the previous evening against five Khorasan targets near Sarmada, Syria— in the country’s northwest, not far from recent fighting between the al Qaeda aligned al Nusra Front and Western backed moderate rebels. “Initial indications are that it had the intended results, striking terrorists and destroying or severely damaging several vehicles, as well as buildings assessed to be meeting and staging areas or bomb making and training facilities,” CENTCOM declared. The strikes are the first acknowledged US strikes against the little-known group since September, and CENTCOM stressed they were not in response to the Nusra Front clashes in the region and did not “target the Nusra Front as a whole.” Khorasan is a term used to refer to a network of Nusra and al Qaeda core terrorists who are training operatives for attacks against US and Western targets, according to DOD. The recent strikes were “decisive action” to “remove their capability to act,” CENTCOM said.