Knock Knock

The coalition against ISIS in Iraq and Syria recently used a measure known as a “knock operation” to avoid civilian casualties while destroying a facility where the terror group’s money is stored in Mosul, Maj. Gen. Peter Gersten told reporters Tuesday. The coalition targeted the home of a finance emir who “was the major distributor of funds to Daesh fighters,” but saw that a woman and her children also lived in the building, said Gersten, Operation Inherent Resolve deputy commander for operations and intelligence. Commanders used remotely piloted aircraft for a pattern of life study, then put a Hellfire air-to-surface missile “on top of the building and airburst it, so it wouldn’t destroy the building, simply knock on the roof to ensure that she and the children were out of the building.” The men in the building “literally trampled over [the woman] to get out” of the building, but she and her children were able to leave, and the operation continued, Gersten said. However, he said, the woman ran back into the building after the weapon had already been released. Gersten said the finance emir was believed to have been storing about $150 million in his house, and the weapon entered the building in the “exact location” where that money was stored. “This is a very congested environment we fight in,” he said. (See also: CENTCOM Releases Updated Civilian Casualty Numbers.)