The Pentagon’s fight against the Islamic State has grown increasingly aggressive since late fall and includes higher levels of allowable civilian casualties in the bombing campaign to target militants and their cash supplies, according to interviews with military officials and Pentagon data.
Since last fall, the Pentagon has delegated more authority to the commander of the war, Army Lt. Gen. Sean MacFarland, to approve targets when civilians could be killed. Previously, authority for missions that ran a higher risk of killing innocents had been made by higher headquarters, U.S. Central Command. Seeking approval from above takes time, and targets of fleeting opportunity can be missed.
Six Defense Department officials, all speaking on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to describe how Islamic State, also known as ISIS, targets are selected and attacked, described a sliding scale of allowable civilian casualties, based on the value of the target and the location. For example, a strike with the potential to wound or kill more civilians would be permitted if it prevented ISIS fighters from causing greater harm
Read More- Military Times
Image courtesy of AP
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