Are Manned Air Operations Against ISIS in Syria a Good Idea?

May 09, 2015



Disclaimer: This list is NOT all inclusive. US Special Operations have dozens of firearms at their disposal. This list is just a sampling and is arranged in NO particular order.

     FN SCAR

The Special Operations Forces Combat Assault Rifle (SCAR) is a modular rifle made by FN Herstal (FNH) for the United States Special Operations Command (SOCOM) to satisfy the requirements of the SCAR competition. This family of rifles consist of two main types. The SCAR-L, for "light", is chambered in the 5.56×45mm NATO cartridge and the SCAR-H, for "heavy", fires 7.62×51mm NATO. Both are available in Long Barrel and Close Quarters Combat variants.

10 Guns of the Special Forces

10 Guns of the Special Forces

10 Guns of the Special Forces

Pictured Above: FN MK 20 MOD 0 Sniper Support Rifle (SSR)
Cartridge
  • 5.56×45mm NATO(SCAR-L)
  • 7.62×51mm NATO(SCAR-H)
Action Gas-operated (short-stroke gas piston), rotating bolt
Rate of fire 625 rounds/min
Muzzle velocity
  • SCAR-L: 2,870 ft/s (870 m/s) (M855)
  • SCAR-L: 2,630 ft/s (800 m/s) (Mk 262)
  • SCAR-H: 2,342 ft/s (714 m/s) (M80)
Effective firing range
  • SCAR-L: 300 m (330 yd) (Short), 500 m (550 yd) (Standard), 600 m (660 yd) (Long)
  • SCAR-H: 300 m (330 yd) (Short), 600 m (660 yd) (Standard), 800 m (870 yd) (Long)
Feed system
  • SCAR-L: STANAG box magazine
  • SCAR-H/SSR: 20-round box magazine
Sights Iron sights or various optics

FULL FN SCAR SPECS HERE

 

 Words By Steve Hamm, EMS Pilot. Former CW4 OH-58D(R) Kiowa Test Pilot at Fort Campbell, KY.

With the current situation in Syria and the ISIS movement apparently growing stronger day by day, the decision to conduct air strikes seems to be on everyone's mind. President Obama has ordered surveillance flights to gain more intelligence. This decision has had both sides of Congress voicing their opinions. The military generals, both active and retired, have weighed in with their thoughts on conducting air strikes. I was on FB recently and someone asked me "Why can't we just carpet bomb the place and be done with it?" I responded" It's a little more complicated than that".

Are Manned Air Operations Against ISIS in Syria a Good Idea?

"Carpet bombing" Syria could take care of the immediate threat but the collateral damage, both physical and political, could have very bad effects. Having been a helicopter combat pilot, I do have some insight into the ramifications and problems that this type of campaign can bring up. Besides the obvious destruction of property, there is the possibility of non-combatant civilian casualties. If that happens, ISIS would use it against us on the media. The other issue is conducting SAR (Search and Rescue) missions. With the apparent growing number of ISIS fighters, and their brutality of violence, attempting a SAR mission to rescue a downed pilot would be extremely dangerous. I would hope that these issues are already being discussed at the highest levels.

Are Manned Air Operations Against ISIS in Syria a Good Idea?

USAF Pararescue in action during SAR mission.

What do you think?  Are manned Air Ops over Syria a good idea? Sound off in the comments!