Last week we discussed the RCAF Hornets' puzzling weapons load as they entered the anti-ISIS air campaign over Iraq. Now we have learned that they have dropped their first live ordnance during a mission over western Iraq on Sunday. Although details remain scarce, CTVNews is reporting that the target of the air strike was earth moving equipment.
The Canadian Ministry of Defense has kept mum on exactly what the targets were that the Hornets engaged, but the DoD said airstrikes were conducted in the area of Fallujah on Sunday, which is where the Canadian Hornets were patrolling. Those air strikes were said to have taken out some earth moving equipment; five bulldozers and a lone dump truck to be more exact.
Although construction equipment in the hands of the enemy is not an illegitimate target, since an ISIS built berm can make it harder for the Iraqi Army to engage their positions. Still, a dump truck and bulldozers are not exactly combative in nature, nor are they a high priority on the targeting list.
Engagements like this are just another sign of just how hard it is to effectively execute an air war against an embedded enemy like ISIS without professional targeting on the ground. Nonetheless, Canada is now a shooting partner in what is looking to be a very, very long war.
Tyler Rogoway is a defense journalist and photographer who maintains the website Foxtrot Alpha for Jalopnik.com You can reach Tyler with story ideas or direct comments regarding this or any other defense topic via the email address Tyler@Jalopnik.com