(BAGHDAD, Iraq) — The Iraqi military ran out of Hellfire missiles six days ago, and though the U.S. is rushing more missiles into the country, Iraq has only two modified Cessna aircraft to launch them in their battle against the radical Islamic militia ISIS.
ISIS has damaged 28 tanks and shot down three helicopters, a significant percentage of the government force, and the militia killed an entire Iraqi Security Force brigade in the last couple of days at the border with Syria, which ISIS now controls.
The losses have left the Iraqi military with no offensive capability, and no real air force.
With the brigade at the border at Al Qaim wiped out, ISIS now controls the territory from Rubiya to Al Qaim. The tribes in Al Qaim tried to fight them, but ISIS unleashed a major artillery barrage, then a major assault, and they could not hold the back.
Taking Al Qaim opens up the entire Euphrates Valley to the insurgents, and ISIS has a safe haven across the border in Syria, which makes air strikes difficult.
Threat of a massive drive into Baghdad has receded somewhat, but fear remains that the radical militia will try big attacks for propaganda victories, or that its forces might take small neighborhoods and publicize its victories on YouTube in an attempt to scare the Shia into overreacting with the militias.
Full article: Iraq Military Out of Hellfire Missiles in Battle Against ISIS (790 KABC)