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“The U.S. military conducted a second wave of attacks on (parked) ISIS oil tankers in Syria on Sunday, Nov. 22, but the attack fell short of its goal,” reports. “They ran out of ammunition . . . But the desire was to destroy every single truck there,” pronounced Army Col. Steven Warren, spokesman for the U.S.-led coaltion fighting ISIS. Despite the click bait headline above (sorry), this isn’t what I’d call a scandal. As Col. Warren points out . . .

“It’s not a movie where you kind of fly along and just strafe, and you know, the trucks blow up. No, it’s — they struck each truck, or groups of two or three trucks. It is a machine gun, so there is a certain area aspect to it, right? You know, the gunfire isn’t laser guided…So it’s individual strike a truck, or two or three trucks; move to the next batch, strike them; move, strike; move, strike.”

Here’s the real scandal: the U.S. military is shooting-up oil trucks because the Obama Administration doesn’t want them to blow-up oil wells. Environmental destruction and all. Maybe something about post-ISIS reconstruction or our alleged allies’ need for cheap oil? Anyway, political correctness.

So ISIS’ financial enablers keep pumping oil, American pilots’ lives are put at risk and U.S. taxpayers are soaked for tens of millions of dollars – that could have been better spent bombing the hell out of ISIS’ oil production facilities. Go figure.

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  1. One strike at an oil well and see how suddenly reasonable everybody gets. All they got is oil. Without it they’re back to tents and camels.

    • This administration has not troubled itself with the lessons learned in blood from the past. It is pretty much determined to remake past mistakes on its own…and yet fail to learn from them.

      This administration has been amatuer hour on so many fronts from the beginning.

    • The bombing campaign contributed however never worked to full effect. Air Force leadership struggled between mass bombing and ground attack. Only when fighter command was able to kill anything that moved or floated did the Allies destroy the German war machine.

      Ideas only motivate. Remove logistics from your enemy and your left with a trigger puller with no support.

      • “Remove logistics from your enemy and your left with a trigger puller with no support.”

        Bingo. They don’t necessarily have to strike at the wells; just take out the infrastructure that makes the wells useful: power to run them, pipes to carry the oil away, roads that carry the trucks, the trucks themselves….

      • Yeah, people act like bombing worked, but none of the studies done made it really seem effective, and the way it was done was a crime against the crews (for example, both the Brits and the Americans should have waited at least 6 months before starting, the Brits to figure out how to hit targets at night (instead, 6 months of consequence free training practice for German air defenses), the Americans, until the had the numbers their doctrine claimed they needed to survive fighters (turns out that was wrong, what they needed was the P-51 with its range).

  2. just proves the air force must have the f-35. all 188 rounds of cannon ammunition would have allowed the one f-35 able to fly to put one truck-killing round per truck, completely destroying the trucks in the convoy entirely, without spilling a drop of oil into the fragile desert sands, saving the planet for one more day.

    • This is where the new military fails…some missions just call for the massive application dumb firepower. B-52s dropping MK82s and MK20s lots of them. Old scholl ARC LIGHT baby.

      • My immediate thought, too. All those trucks neatly lined up and waiting – one B-52 with a big load of 250 pound dumb bombs would have been a huge dose of “Shock and Awe”. Or a C-130 gunship on a milk run could have cleared that entire highway. I love the A-10s, but how about the right tool for the job? Sometimes killing a fly with a sledge hammer sends an effective message to the rest of the flies.

        • was waching putin putting the boots to isil ,,hes got em running ,,they are defecting posts russia is hammering the cr#p out of those hajiis

    • You’re kidding, right? It is a Gattling gun, just like on the A-10-. It doesn’t fire in single shot mode any more than the A-10 does. And even if it tried doing individual runs on 135 tankers, it would run out of fuel long before it finished the job. To say nothing of the fact that it really is not designed as a close air support aircraft in the style of the A-10, but instead as a medium altitude stand off weapon–which has a dearth of weaponry and none of the heavy armor plate the A-10 sports.

      FYI, The A-10’s primary built-in weapon is the 30 mm GAU-8/A Avenger Gatling-type cannon. One of the most powerful aircraft cannon ever flown, it fires large depleted uranium armor-piercing shells. In the original design, the pilot could switch between two rates of fire: 2,100 or 4,200 rounds per minute;[62] this was changed to a fixed rate of 3,900 rounds per minute. The cannon takes about half a second to come up to speed, so 50 rounds are fired during the first second, 65 or 70 rounds per second thereafter. The gun is accurate enough to place 80 percent of its shots within a 40-foot (12.4 m) diameter circle from 4,000 feet (1,220 m) while in flight.[64] The GAU-8 is optimized for a slant range of 4,000 feet (1,220 m) with the A-10 in a 30-degree dive. The gun’s ammunition drum can hold up to 1,350 rounds of 30 mm ammunition, but generally holds 1,174 rounds

      • i understand your thinking, but….wrong.

        the f-35 is THE wonder weapon of the last 100yrs. it can do everything, anything, or nothing, depending on the mission. it can fly further, faster, sneakier, more economically than any combat aircraft to date. the missiles carried by th f-35, controlled by the software that will be available sometime after 2019, can engage and kill 100 enemy aircraft simultaneously. all done with a single pilot, that will eventually be replaced by sophisticated computers. a single f-35 can destroy an entire air wing of aggressors, making it the most economical weapon in a long time. which is why we only need a few dozen, so the actual cost to field and support the plane only looks bad on paper. the f-35 is the result of three decades of trial and error, resulting in an aircraft that has seen more discrepancies and errors than any other, leading to a terrific learning curve that means our air force will one day have the only fighter the rest of the world will be afraid to challenge. even the british have decided the f-35 is so good, they will buy another one so that they have two on their aricraft carrier that will replace the entire british war fleet !

        so, there.

      • Fact is, the A-10 Thunderbolt II; aka: “Warthog”; is an aircraft designed specifically for CAS (close air support), ground attack & tank-killing around the 30MikeMike GAU-8 Avenger gun.

    • Not even worth doing that. They’re soft targets, just litter the area with good old fashioned MK20 Rockeyes…a lot less expensive.

  3. It’s troubling they didn’t employ any guided weapons. Do they not have any? Those bullets go all over, he guided weapon to the target. The A10 is great at this role, but has limited ammo. And why didn’t they bring more planes to the fight once they saw what they had. Did they not have any additional planes or no ammo to arm them? Troubling and incompetent no matter how you view it. I bet the ROE is so tight, it’s down to weapon load and amount as well as number of planes.

    • Using guided weapons on soft targets is expensive overkill. None of the current arsenal of aircraft have significant capacity for thier 20mm cannon unfortunately. This is what dumb bombs and cluster munitions are for. That, or wait until darkness and let Spooky unleash its wrath.

      • The A10 can carry a max of 1350 rounds of 30 mm. That is not an insignificant number of rounds, even at 50 rounds per second.

        • I should have qualified that, with the current strike-fighters. The exceptions being the JSF F-35, which is uses a 25mm. The A10 which has been out of production since the late 70s, is the only pure tactical fixed wing ground attack aircraft in inventory, save some special ops aircraft. The cannon in most aircraft is for very limited strafing and occasions of very close dog fighting when a missile isn’t the weapon of choice. The F18 A+/C Hornet carries less than 600 rds and IIRC, the E/F series even fewer. It’s pretty easy to go through that very quickly.

          20mm BTW is heavy, and a PITA to handle.

  4. If they can get stuxnet into the Iranian nuclear program, then why not something similar in ISIS oil production facilities? No oil spills, no killing of potential “innocents” if done right. Their control systems are not proprietary to ISIS so an attack could be structured against their software. Randomly distributed trojan horse memory sticks with porn on them would find their way into the “right” usb port at least once…That’s just one idea.
    I suspect our leaders aren’t that interested in winning or this would already be over, like PGW I.

    • I doubt their oil facilities are high-tech. In places like that, oil still pretty much flows out of the ground if you’re in the right spot. In Chechnya in similar circumstances, separatists were running very crude all-manual oil rigs, and still managed to turn quite a profit.

  5. Using guided weapons on soft targets is expensive overkill. None of the current arsenal of aircraft have significant capacity for thier 20mm cannon unfortunately. This is what dumb bombs and cluster munitions are for. That or wait until darkness and let Spooky unleash its wrath.

  6. Go for the wells. Going for transportation is a waste of dollars. The cost per truck probably could pay for a lot of Gubbermint give aways to those who actually might deserve or really need it. Or as most Dems have showed still wasted money no matter how they spend it as long as its spent.
    No wells blasted in the Gulf wars are still burning. They can always be put out at a later date.
    Just another example of Obamas poor decision making processes. And the fools he surrounds himself with.
    Doing anything half hearted isn’t worth doing at all.

    • I was in northern Saudi Arabia during GW1. Wake up every morning with black rings around your nostrils and hacking up black lung butter, you might have a different opinion about bombing an oil field. BTW we didn’t bomb Kuwaiti oil fields, Saddam’s military did that.

      • Thats why you drop the second bigger bomb afterwards, to put the fires out. Didn’t you watch the oil field movie with John Wayne?

      • I understand and remember reading the reports afterward.
        My point being the damage done to the environments vs the harm done to humans. Is at this point selfishly to me moot. I know, I know Im not there.
        People will be dying regardless. Remove the source of ISIS income may save more lives in the future. This is of more importance at this point in time to me. Destroying trucks isn’t.

    • Am I the only one who recalls a famous nose-cam video of a smart bomb going in the window of an Iraqi pumping facility during Desert Storm? I guess the trucks here are considered infrastructure, but how about the fixed facilities necessary to fill those tankers up?

    • Gotta be careful bombing a well head. Remember the pall of oil smoke over Iraq in the 90s? No airstrikes for anyone in that crap.

  7. The Russians have no such compunction regarding oil wells. And I dareday neither do the frogs…BTW this may be your best post ever RF. Happy Thanksgiving!

    • Russia isn’t bombing wells, they are bombing oil production facilities. So are we. And they are attacking tankers–with dumb bombs. We are attacking with strafing runs–and we probably hit more tankers than they do.

  8. And who do they sell this oil to?

    Oh, right, Turkey, our erstwhile “ally” trying to throw US-Russian relations back decades.

    • Lest it be forgotten (or an unknown to some) there has been no love lost between Russia and Turkey for many centuries. The Crimea, which we now hear so much about as a conflict between Russia and Ukraine, was taken from the Turks originally after a long and brutal war. It only became part of Ukraine as part of the deal to give their nukes back to the Russians when the Soviet Union broke apart. BTW, no one at the time asked the majority ethnic Russians living in the Crimea their opinion on this matter.

      Turks poking sticks at the Russian bear – who’s surprised? It’s probably the ONLY reason Turkey joined NATO.

      • “It only became part of Ukraine as part of the deal to give their nukes back to the Russians when the Soviet Union broke apart.”

        Crimea was given to Ukraine in 1954, back when it was still the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic. It was done as a symbolic gesture to celebrate the 300 year anniversary of the union of Ukraine and Russia (or, if you prefer, the annexation of Ukraine by Russia) created by the Treaty of Pereyaslav. Long-standing rumors were that Khruschev’s Ukrainian origin also had something to do with it.

        Either way, this happened long before the dissolution of the USSR.

  9. Here it is folks. The administration is going after the transport in a token effort to show that ISIS is being contained. A real effort to destroy ISIS would take away its money and would require destroying the oil wells and some refineries. Some say the reason this isn’t done it for environmental concerns. The real reason is taking the oil wells of the world inventory, now and future, would cause speculators to drive up the prices and American production profitability would make huge gains. All oil production is suffering as noted in the number of US wells being shut-in. Hurting the American energy industry is the primary agenda.

    • Recall Newt Greenwich in the 2012 GOP debates sayingno reason why gas cannot be $2-2:30 a gallon. Dems, GOP and the media laughed and thought he was nuts. The reason US oil wells are shutting down is we created, through cost effective fracking, a world glut and cutting the cost of oil in half. This was done without a nickle from and a lot of obstruction from US Government.

  10. I don’t know where you are getting your information from.
    They have hit the oil production facilities multiple times.
    They have been repaired and back in production almost immediately.
    No computers are used in Syrian oil production.
    Oil is refined by locals into heavy diesel fuel for use in generators by locals.
    They do buy the oil from Isis.
    Isis mobile refineries have long ago been bombed.
    The low grade gasoline made by this process is sold in non Isis areas of Syria and Iraq.
    Even the enemies of isis are forced to trade with them to get diesel.
    The diesel is critical for the generators used by local people and fighters in anti Isis areas.
    Every little town has a fuel market so local people can get diesel for ther generators. These are used to power irrigation for farming, generators for hospitals, lights for offices and homes.
    Since the anti Isis fighters in rebel held areas are also dependant on this fuel, you risk alienating everyone in the entire country if you destroy the only source of fuel.
    Who will we get to march into Raqqa if the entire country is angry at the U.S.?

    • I nominate the 28th amendment.

      It is UnAmerican to allow the whole body of the citizenry to deplete all ammunition for any and all campaigns waged by the militia or its government.

      (Aka ammo welfare, which, in my opinion, time has come)

  11. If you have fighter support, why not send Puff in? One AC130 would be delightful I should think.

    As to the oil wells, one bunker penetrator bomb per, if properly on target.. should seal the well I would think.

    • probably late to the table here, but:
      – puff the magic dragon was a c-47
      – spectre was the c-130
      – stinger was the c-119

      • Picking nits here:

        “Puff the Magic Dragon” was an AC-47
        The AC-119s were “Shadow” & “Stinger”
        And the AC-130s are “Spectre”, “Spooky,” “Stinger II” & soon the J-Model “Ghostrider”

        • thanx, had forgotten all those. actually, i was not in the field beyond the time of the original names (squadrons). too many changes over too much time. organic memory stick gets really full after awhile.

  12. This has already been debunked across the net. Typical combat load is 1174 rounds for the 30MM cannon. At a firing rate of 65 rds per sec (once cannon is spinning up to speed) that is 18 sec of engagement of the cannon. What it means is that there were more targets than they had ammo to engage, not some secret Kenyan Socialist radical Muslim agenda .


  13. Engaging soft targets like that with guns, even using A10s is a waste of resources and places aircrews at risk for little benefit.

  14. I’m not sure about the troop / fighter conditions in that area, but having Spec Ops ground forces engage the trucks with .50 cal at 1,200 yards would be fun. Fast rope in a few clicks out with air support and helo evac. I might just be projecting something I would enjoy doing.

  15. We ought to take a page from the old THOR program. For targets as simple as trucks, a two-meter-long steel bar with self-guidance capability dropped from eighty thousand feet would take out the cab (plus occupants) and engine with no problem just by kinetic energy. We have the miniaturization to make a guidance package, and aircraft to fly high enough. Using weapons meant to fight high-techs weapons to go after low-tech targets is both wasteful and foolish.

  16. We need to go Dr Strangelove on their ass*s and roll out the tactical nukes.

    After all didn’t that put a quick end to the WW war in the Pacific!

  17. So several cruise missiles into the pumping stations wouldn’t do the same thing? Also why shoot holes in the trucks when we have jets that could have blown them into dust with guided bombs or hellfire missiles? We take billion dollar fighters low enough to use guns just to make it easier for the enemy to hit with one of our own stinger missiles they got from Iraq?
    This war on terror is a clown show.

  18. Why are the gun runs PERPENDICULAR to the trucks that are in a line? How about we attack straight down the line to hit more trucks per run? Highway of Death™ anyone? A few runs of CBU would also do lots of soft target damage. Hogs can carry LOTS of smart and dumb bombs.

    Inquiring minds want to know…

  19. Obama (PBUH) prohibits strikes on oil rigs due to environmental concerns. SoS Kerry states the displaced petrol truck drivers will be eligible for unemployment benefits and 7 11 franchise opportunities in Delaware and Michigan

  20. The problem with popping the wells is they probably don’t have the ability to cap them, that creates a mess.

    The trucks are nice easy to kill targets. Aircraft run out of rounds, its not a video game. Sounds like they need more A10’s or C130 gunships.

  21. Ammunition exhibits the properties of mass and volume.

    The ability to accommodate materiel exhibiting these properties is somewhat limited on aircraft.

    That’s just the way it is.


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