A-10 Thunderbolt II fighter aircraft taxi to their parking spots upon arrival on Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan, March 31, 2013. The aircraft are part of a new deployment from Moody Air Force Base, Ga. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. David Dobrydney)
Air Force Times: US, coalition strikes in Afghanistan spike, hit highest number in five years
The number of weapons released by U.S. and allied aircraft in Afghanistan sharply spiked in April, hitting the highest point in nearly five years.
According to an airpower summary posted online this week by U.S. Air Forces Central Command, coalition aircraft released 460 weapons last month, more than double the 203 weapons released in March. It was the most in a single month since August 2012, when 589 weapons were released. The only months that came close in recent years were August and September 2014, when 437 and 441 weapons were released, respectively. But most other months saw fewer than 200 weapons released.
In a statement Friday, Navy Capt. Bill Salvin, the public affairs director for the Resolute Support mission, said that the renewed focus on eliminating an Islamic State subsidiary called ISIS-Khorasan is leading the coalition to conduct more offensive operations, which is contributing to the increase in weapons released. Also, Salvin said, this is the first spring fighting season since former President Obama expanded the military's authority to attack Taliban forces last June.
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WNU Editor: Coalition aircraft released 460 weapons in April .... or about 15 per day. With the fighting season now in full swing, I will not be surprised if this numbers goes up even higher.