WASHINGTON, June 12 (Sputnik) — The United States is leading a Coalition against the Islamic State of some 60 nations that has conducted more than 4,000 airstrikes against the militant group since August 2014.
“Coalition airpower’s ability to find and target the enemy was so successful that [Islamic State] has since modified their tactics,” US Air Force Air Forces Central Command tactics officer Maj. Easton said on Thursday.
“We know now that they hide amongst the civilian populace and employ decoys in an attempt to be un-targetable.”
The Air Force article followed recent major victories of Islamic State forces, including the capture of the ancient city of Palmyra in Syria and seizing Ramadi in Iraq.
Early in the conflict, Islamic State forces operated open convoys and identified their positions with flags, making them clear targets for air strikes, Easton said.
"But they no longer do so now,” he added.
However, Easton said the US Air Force and its allies were adapting to the new circumstances.
“As the enemy’s tactics change, so have our airpower tactics and we are still finding and eliminating fighters. [The Islamic State] is very much afraid of our ability to strike them.”
US Air Force Combat Operations Director, Lt. Col. Dave Haworth, stated in the article the United States is “fighting an enemy that hides behind civilians.”
“It’s really, really complex to find the enemy, but we are doing it,” Haworth said.
Also on Thursday, US Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Gen. Martin Dempsey said the US armed forces are considering opening new bases in Iraq to expand the struggle against the Islamic State.