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Older U.S. Air Force jets -- including the A-10 Thunderbolt II, eyed in recent years for retirement, and the F-15E Strike Eagle -- are leading the air war against the Islamic State, statistics show.
U.S. military fighter-attack jets, bombers and drones have dropped
more than 67,000 bombs since the 2014 start of Operation Inherent
Resolve, the Defense Department's mission against the Islamic State of
Iraq and Syria, or ISIS, according to information provided by Air Forces
Notably, fighter-attack aircraft released more than three times as
many weapons as bombers did, the figures show. Drones dropped the least
of any category of aircraft.
Military.com has the figures for the 10 types of U.S. aircraft flying combat
sorties: F-15E Strike Eagle, 14,995 weapons released; A-10 Thunderbolt
II, 13,856; B-1 Lancer, 9,195; F/A-18 Super Hornets, 8,920; F-16 Fighting Falcon, 7,679; B-52 Stratofortress, 5,041; MQ-1 Predator drone, 2,274; MQ-9 Reaper, 2,188; AV-8B, 1,650; and F-22, 1,535.
Broken down by aircraft type, fighter and attack planes dropped a
total of 48,635 weapons, or 72 percent of the total; bombers released
14,236, or 21 percent; and drones dropped 4,462, or 7 percent, according
to the statistics.