The F-22 Raptor flew its first ever combat missions Monday.
The Raptor, a stealth fighter jet considered the most advanced in the world, struck ISIS targets in Syria alongside more standard fighter jets, bombers, drones and Tomahawk cruise missiles.
First flown in 1997, the F-22 is the most expensive fighter jet in history.
The U.S. Department of Defense tweeted images Tuesday that showed a target destroyed by the F-22.
Photo shows before and after photos of target by #F22. This was the first time the F22 was used in a combat role. pic.twitter.com/bMma8rxnsK
— U.S. Dept of Defense (@DeptofDefense) September 23, 2014
The F-22 was designed to clear the skies during the Cold War but saw no action versus less advanced air forces in the war on terror. Congress cut funding for the $79 billion program – $420 million per plane – in 2009. Only 187 were built, compared to thousands of F-15’s, F-16’s and F/A-18’s.
On Sept. 20, two Raptors intercepted Russian fighters and bombers near Alaska.