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Pentagon: Over 5,500 Islamic State Targets Destroyed in Airstrikes

 An F/A-18E Super Hornet launches from the aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson flight deck on March 28, 2015. (U.S. Navy Photo/Jacob G. Sisco)
An F/A-18E Super Hornet launches from the aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson flight deck on March 28, 2015. (U.S. Navy Photo/Jacob G. Sisco)

WASHINGTON — As of March 31, the U.S. and its coalition partners have damaged or destroyed 5,547 Islamic State targets in the air war against the group, according to a Pentagon battle damage assessment released Monday.

The targets include U.S.-made Humvees, tanks and other items that belonged to the Iraqi security forces but were captured by the Islamic State when the militants routed the Iraqi army in a sweeping offensive last year.

The list does not include estimates of how many Islamic State fighters have been killed in the airstrikes. The Pentagon is wary of providing “body counts” as it did during the Vietnam War, when success was often measured by the number of enemy killed rather than the strategic situation on the ground.

As of Monday, the international coalition has carried out 3,141 airstrikes against the Islamic State, 1,808 of which were conducted in Iraq and 1,333 in Syria. Of those 3,141 strikes, 2,501 — about 80 percent — have been launched by the United States.

Some airstrikes have resulted in the destruction of multiple targets.

The other coalition countries that have participated in the bombing campaign are: Australia, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Jordan, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Bahrain, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

The air campaign began in August, when President Barack Obama authorized military action against the Islamic State.

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