The UK government has released information regarding RAF airstrikes against IS targets in Syria following a Freedom of Information Request on the 26 April 2016 and subsequently released on 01 June 2016.
The information released records all alleged airstrikes from 02 December 2015 through to 18 May 2016.
Since the House of Commons approved airstrikes in December 2015, it is estimated a total of twenty two IS fighters have been killed by RAF airstrikes in a five month preiod. That is a rate of approximately one IS fighter killed per week as a result of RAF airstrikes.
Hellfire missiles have been predominantly used with one Paveway IV missile(s) attack recorded on the 15 January 2016.
Each Hellfire missile costs approximately £70,000 / $100,000 – (varies depending on specific model).
One Paveway IV bomb costs approximately £70,000 / $100,000 according to page three of another Freedom of Information Request to the UK MoD in 2014.
This means that the total cost shown in the table presented by the UK MoD would be at least £600,000 / $850,000 if one single bomb was dropped per attack. If two bombs are dropped then the cost would beat least £1.2 million / $1.8 million.
This does not include the costs of fuel, maintenance, crew, support, and the costs to generate the intelligence for the attack location(s), it is purely the cost of the bombs alone.
Equally it does not include identified IS hardware that is targetted which may be abandoned or ’empty’ at the time of a strike.
It is to be noted that the estimated kill figures reported above are down from a previous Freedom of Information Request by the Huffington Post which they reported on 18 February 2016.
- Huffington Post article (18 Feb 2016) – Exclusive: RAF Brimstone Missile Has Not Killed Any Isis Militants In Syria, And Only Seven Hit By UK Bombs:
A video on the Channel 4 Youtube page shows debate and reasoning by MP’s in the House of Commons before the vote for airstrikes in Syria was held.