The U.S. government has spent nearly $11 billion in its fight against the Islamic State group, also called ISIS, since Operation Inherent Resolve came into existence in 2014, latest data from the Pentagon revealed.
The U.S.-led coalition costs American tax payers an average $12.5 million every day, the data showed. Spending increased from $5.5 billion in 2015 to $10.7 billion as of Dec. 15, 2016.
The coalition, which is working to eliminate ISIS globally, is currently focusing on eliminating the terrorist group’s Syria and Iraq operations. “The destruction of targets in Syria and Iraq further limits ISIL’s ability to project terror and conduct operations,” officials said, using another acronym for the militant group.
The U.S. is joined by Australia, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Jordan, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom in its fight against ISIS in Iraq. The coalition is currently working on liberating Mosul, the Iraqi headquarters of ISIS, from the group’s control.
Mosul has been under the militant group’s control for over two years. Recapturing the city could hasten the end of the group’s operations in the country.
A senior Iraqi commander said earlier this month that the Mosul offensive, which began in October 2016, could be completed in three months. In an interview with the Associated Press, Lt. Gen. Talib Shaghati said it “is possible” that the operation could end in three months or less but an accurate estimate would be difficult as this was not a conventional fight.
Meanwhile, Operation Inherent Resolve’s efforts in Syria involve a coalition of 12 nations led by the U.S. According to the Pentagon, the coalition has conducted a total of 6,647 strikes in the war-torn nation as of Jan. 19, 2017, of which Washington alone carried out 6,314. The coalition conducted 10,907 strikes in Iraq, bringing the total to 17,554 strikes.
A January report by New York-based independent think tank Council on Foreign Relations said Washington dropped a total of 24,287 bombs on Syria and Iraq alone during former President Barack Obama’s final year in office. The think tank found that the U.S. was responsible for nearly 79 percent of coalition airstrikes in Iraq and Syria in 2016.