According to an “unverified” report fromÂ London-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, former members of the Iraqi military may well beÂ instructing members of the Sunni tribe calling themselves ISIS-ISIL-IS to fly warplanes.
That’s the worrying prospect suggested by an unverified report from the London-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights that ISIS has three warplanes in its possession in northern Syria.
The Syrian opposition group also claims, citing reliable sources in Syria, that former Iraqi military officers are training members of the Sunni extremist militant group to fly them.
The planes are at the Al-Jarrah military airport east of the contested city of Aleppo, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.
The former Iraqi military officers are among those who have joined ISIS, and people living near the airport have said that they recently saw an airplane flying at low altitude after it took off, according to the Observatory.
The United States military and Pentagon downplay this report, but witnesses in Iraq say that they have seen low flying aircraft, so someone is flying planes in that area.
“We’re not aware of ISIL conducting any flight operations in Syria or elsewhere,” said spokesman Col. Patrick Ryder.
“We continue to keep a close eye on ISIL activity in Syria and Iraq and will continue to conduct strikes against their equipment, facilities, fighters and centers of gravity, wherever they may be.”
U.S. Central Command has been caught flat-footed before, so this could be anything from the truth to a smokescreen.
If this report is true, this sends ominous signals to the west. Â ISIS fighters are willing to steal anything that will help their cause and if they learn to fly jets, that just makes them all the more lethal.
Source article from CNN.