The United States and five Arab allies launched a military campaign in Syria this week, striking targets controlled by the Islamic State and the Khorasan Group, a small al Qaeda offshoot in Syria that was allegedly plotting an attack against the United States. Hours after missiles were launched from both air and sea, the American military released a set of images and video footage, excitedly showing the first effects of the operation.
During the first wave of strikes, 160 munitions were reportedly fired at 14 targets inside Syria. The operation included the firing of 47 Tomahawk cruise missiles from U.S. Navy destroyers, as well as airstrikes by American and allied jets. It also featured the highly anticipated debut of the F-22 Raptor stealth fighter, an aircraft that had never flown in a combat operation before, despite costing the Pentagon around $67 billion to develop and build. That's a cost of about $412 million per plane, according to the Government Accountability Office.
The Daily Beast tallied up the total cost of the first day of the mission, including missiles and flight time for the entire strike package, and estimated the operations were worth about $79 million. Pentagon officials promised that it would be just the beginning of a prolonged campaign that could take years to complete. If we're going to be getting into another war with no defined end, the U.S. military wants taxpayers to know that their annual IRS checks are at least buying supremacy (not that this has guaranteed results in the past).