Strikes have decreased in regularity this month, with the terrorists confined to a tiny enclave of territory where there is a significant number of civilians, who are being transported to safety by Syrian Democratic Forces.
However, a Typhoon was deployed to the River Euphrates on 19 February, where a boat used by Daesh had been identified and was destroyed using the Brimstone 2 missile. The RAF also destroyed two Daesh strong-points, including a heavy machine-gun position, on 11 February using Paveway IV.
The Brimstone was one of three weapons upgrades fitted onto the Typhoon last month under ‘Project Centurion’, worth £425m over the past three years. This project not only enhanced the Typhoon with the precision attack missile Brimstone, but the aircraft also now has deep strike cruise missile Storm Shadow and air-to-air missile Meteor at its disposal. It means the jets have boosted capabilities to intercept airborne missiles and strike ground based targets, seamlessly taking over from the Tornado’s attack role as it nears retirement.
A pair of Typhoons patrolled the Euphrates valley on Tuesday 19 February; a boat had been identified as being used by Daesh, and was found by the Typhoons to be moored on the river bank due south of Baghuz Fawqani. A Brimstone 2 missile was employed to deny the terrorists use of the craft, whether to bring in supplies or allow them to set up operations elsewhere. This was the first operational firing of a Brimstone 2 from a Typhoon FGR4, following the aircraft’s recent upgrade.