Britain, Belgium, Denmark to Join US Airstrikes

Iraq Only: None Will Join US Strikes in Syria

Britain, Belgium, and Denmark have each announced their intentions to join the US air war in Iraq today, with the British and Belgian parliaments both voting in favor of conducting airstrikes, and the Danish government announcing it, with a parliamentary vote still pending.

Britain’s vote came after many hours of debate on the conflict, but passed overwhelmingly 524-43. Britain’s six Tornado fighters were already conducting reconnaissance flights, and will simply expand that to join the attacks.

The Belgian parliament’s vote was similarly overwhelming, 114-2 in favor, with six F-16s being sent to Greece and eventually Jordan, from which they will launch strikes. They are also sending two military transport planes and 120 pilots.

Denmark, which did not vote on the war, is also sending seven F-16s, along with 250 pilots, into the region to conduct strikes on Iraq. They had already sent a single transport aircraft, along with 55 ground troops meant to guard the single transport aircraft.

None of the nations, and indeed none of the US “coalition” partners in Europe, will be conducting airstrikes in Syria. British officials, who explicitly argued around the legality of bombing Iraq, did not attempt to make similar cases on Syria, as the US has.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.