09:30 GMT24 September 2020
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    The United States is preparing to increase its reliance on the M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) in the fight against Daesh in Syria and Iraq.

    As the US prepares to launch offensives against Daesh strongholds in Raqqa and Mosul, the truck-mounted rockets will play a key role in "shaping operations," and have already been used to fire projectiles into northern Syria from neighboring Turkey, according to military officials.

    "What we’ve done is we’ve hammered Daesh targets with airstrikes and strikes from artillery and HIMARS," US Air Force Col. John Dorrian said, according to Defense Tech.

    "The HIMARS in Turkey was fired into northern Syria. It was fired against a Daesh safehouse and the target was destroyed."

    The US has also carried out recent airstrikes in Syria to cut off the terrorist group’s supply routes into Raqqa.

    "Near Ar Raqqah, six strikes destroyed ten ISIL [Daesh] supply routes, three oil pump jacks and other oil drilling equipment," reads a statement released by the US Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve on Monday.

    In addition to the system placed in Turkey, the Pentagon plans to deploy a second in northern Iraq.

    "Those are two separate HIMARS systems – one going to be used in Turkey to support our operations, one in support of our operations in Iraq," Air Force Maj. Gen. Peter Gersten said during a Pentagon briefing last month.

    The Iraqi unit will likely be placed in the Tigris River Valley.

    Last week, Operation Inherent Resolve spokesman John Dorrian said that 400 additional US troops had been deployed to Iraq in preparation for the assault on Mosul. According to Lieutenant General Vincent Stewart, director of the US Defense Intelligence Agency, the Mosul operation could be initiated in two or three months.

    The battle is anticipated to be especially challenging as experts fear that the estimated one million residents who remain in the city could be used as human shields.

    Related:

    Struggle for Territorial Control Delays Start of Anti-Daesh Operation in Mosul
    Set for a Siege: Battle for Iraq’s Mosul to Start Soon, US General Reveals
    Pro-Baghdad Militias Recruiting Children for Mosul Liberation Operation
    Tags:
    High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS), Daesh, Vincent Stewart, Peter Gersten, John Dorrian, Iraq, Syria, United States
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