ISIL has recently debuted a few new weapons systems it plans on deploying in its battle against the infidels. One weapon, based on an air-to-air AA-2 missile, likely won’t be much bother to modern aircraft with advanced deterrent systems, but you have to give them credit for trying.
The video claiming to show a mish mosh of old Russian military hardware somehow stuck together with hopes and dreams is likely propaganda since no actual completed missile or test is shown. But just the same, the fact that ISIL is actively seeking to create such weapons is a bit disturbing. While most advanced aircraft will be able to shrug off such outdated hardware given its lengthy lock-on time and limited range, civilian airliners likely aren’t nimble enough to outmaneuver it.
But perhaps more troublesome is the larger issue of not really knowing just what goes on at “jihadi university”, the so-called ISIL engineering training center where such improvised weaponry is being imagined.
The YouTube video gives a closer look inside the center, where dummies complete with warming systems to mimic the heat signature of a human body are being used in place of human drivers. ISIL members can then remotely control the vehicles and detonate the deadly payload inside. This is just a couple of potential nightmares that U.S. forces could face should the current or forthcoming administration decide to send even more American soldiers to Syria or Iraq; When IEDs become passé to Islamic extremists, it’s time to start worrying.
Other recent innovations include homemade rockets propelled by conventional compressed gas canisters, massive vehicle-born IEDs made from seized U.S. made M113 armored personnel carriers with explosives capable of bringing down large buildings, and other DIY projects.
As has been mentioned here at SOFREP, ISIL is an overblown threat to the American homeland, and while videos such as these are intimidating to some, the likelihood of widespread deployment of such weaponry, especially here at home, is slim and none.
In fact, videos like these are arguably a way for ISIL to lash out while desperately trying to hold on to their momentum and viability as a functioning state. Many outlets are reporting that Iraqi forces are dealing serious blows to their supply lines while simultaneously pushing them out of their previously held territory. However, its doubtful the Iraqis are doing it without help. The “specialized expeditionary targeting force” –can’t we just say JSOC?- that SECDEF Ash Carter spoke of in December of last year just might be doing its job better than anyone thought possible.