Infamous Al-Qaeda head Ayman al-Zawahiri was killed by two missiles fired at his Kabul residence — however footage confirmed no signal of an explosion, and US officers say nobody else was harmed.
That factors to the use once more by america of the macabre Hellfire R9X, a warhead-less missile believed outfitted with six razor-like blades extending from the fuselage that slices by its goal however doesn’t explode.
By no means publicly acknowledged by the Pentagon or CIA — the 2 US businesses recognized to undertake focused assassinations of extremist leaders — the R9X first appeared in March 2017 when Al-Qaeda senior chief Abu al-Khayr al-Masri was killed by a drone strike whereas travelling in a automotive in Syria.
Images of the automobile confirmed a big gap by the roof, with the automotive’s metallic, and all the inside, together with its occupants, bodily shredded. However the entrance and rear of the automotive appeared fully intact.
Up till then, Hellfire missiles — fired by drones in focused assaults — had been recognized for highly effective explosions and infrequently intensive collateral injury and deaths.
Since 2017, a handful of different finely-targeted assaults present comparable outcomes.
Particulars of the mysterious weapon leaked out, and it was dubbed the “flying ginsu,” after a well-known Nineteen Eighties tv industrial for ostensibly Japanese kitchen knives that might lower cleanly by aluminum cans and stay completely sharp.
Additionally referred to as the “ninja bomb,” the missile has change into the US munition of alternative for killing leaders of extremist teams whereas avoiding civilian casualties.
That’s apparently what occurred with Zawahiri.
A US official advised reporters that on the morning of July 31, Zawahiri was standing alone on the balcony of his Kabul residence, when a US drone launched the 2 Hellfires.
Obvious pictures of the constructing present home windows blown out on one ground, however the remainder of the constructing, together with home windows on different flooring, nonetheless in place.
Members of Zawahiri’s household had been current within the residence, however “had been purposely not focused and weren’t harmed,” the official stated.
“We have now no indications that civilians had been harmed on this strike,” the official added.
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