One Canadian sharpshooter with the country’s elite special forces has set a world record for the longest shot, killing an Islamic State fighter in Iraq from two miles away.
The Joint Task Force 2 sniper delivered the blow within the last month from a high-rise building, according to the Globe and Mail. From the moment the skilled sniper pulled the trigger, it took just 10 seconds for the bullet in the McMillan TAC-50 rifle, a .50-caliber weapon, to strike the Islamic State enemy.
Shared via @globeandmail - Canadian elite special forces sniper makes record-breaking kill shot in Iraq -… https://t.co/pLNKcF0mfn— Canadian Army (@Canadian Army)1498133395.0
“The shot in question actually disrupted a Daesh [Islamic State] attack on Iraqi security forces,” one military source told the Canadian outlet. “Instead of dropping a bomb that could potentially kill civilians in the area, it is a very precise application of force and because it was so far away, the bad guys didn’t have a clue what was happening.”
The military confirmed the kill with video footage, but declined to make the clip public. One military insider described the shot to the Globe and Mail as “an incredible feat,” adding, “It is a world record that might never be equaled.”
Ryan Cleckner, a former U.S. Army Ranger sniper who served two tours of duty in Afghanistan, also praised the stunning shot. He credited the spotter’s expertise for the successful kill.
“The spotter would have had to successfully calculate five factors: Distance, wind, atmospheric conditions, and the speed of the earth’s rotation at their latitude,” Cleckner told Fox News. “Because wind speed and direction would vary over the two miles the bullet traveled, the true challenge here was being able to calculate the actual wind speed and direction all the way to the target.”
The veteran went on to say the spotter “would have had to understand the temperature, humidity, and barometric pressure of the air the round had to travel through.”
The world record was previously held by British sniper Craig Harrison, who in 2009 shot a Taliban gunner from a little more than 1.5 miles away. The longest shot ever delivered by an American sniper came in 2004, when Sgt. Bryan Kremer killed an Iraqi insurgent from about 1.4 miles away in 2004.
Though the Canadian military pulled its fighter jets out of Iraq in 2016, the U.S. ally has increased its number of soldiers who are on the ground to train, assist, and advise Iraqi security forces.
The Canadian military said in a statement that members of the nation’s Special Operations Task Force “do not accompany leading combat elements, but enable the Iraqi security forces who are in a tough combat mission. This takes the form of advice in planning their operations and assistance to defeat Daesh through the use of coalition resources.”