A sniper with Canada’s elite special forces assigned in Iraq has set an astounding new world record for the longest confirmed kill shot in military history at an amazing distance of 3,540 meters. The Canadian Armed Forces confirmed the record Thursday and said a member of Joint Task Force 2 killed an Islamic State insurgent with that impressive feat during an operation in Iraq last month.
The forces, however, said in a statement: "For operational security reasons and to preserve the safety of our personnel and our Coalition partners we will not discuss precise details on when and how this incident took place."
The elite sniper used a McMillan TAC-50 sniper rifle while firing from a high-rise during said operation. It took under 10 seconds to hit the target. The military source also said: "The shot in question actually disrupted a Daesh [Islamic State] attack on Iraqi security forces. 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 way, the bad guys didn't have a clue what was happening."
The military source also maintained Canada’s limitation of merely providing advice and assist mission.
The Globe and Mail have reported that the kill was independently verified by video camera and other data.
A military insider told The Globe: "This is an incredible feat. It is a world record that might never be equalled."
British sniper Craig Harrison, who shot a Taliban gunner with a 338 Lapua Magnum rifle from 2,475 meters away in 2009 previously held the world record.
JTF2 special forces are primarily focused with counterterrorism, sniper operations and hostage rescue. Much of the information about this group is classified. The unit's snipers and members of Canadian Special Operations Regiment have been operating in tough conditions in Iraq with the main goal of training Kurdish forces.
For operational security reasons, sources would not reveal the names of the elite Canadian sniper and his partner, nor the location where the record was set. Canada holds a reputation among Western military forces for the quality of its snipers, despite the small size of the Canadian Armed Forces compared to the United States and Britain.
A sniper and his observer partner are often assigned to remote and dangerous locations to hunt down insurgents, while carrying heavy equipment. Once they have identified the target’s location, snipers follow the same methodical approach before each shot. Breathe in, out, in, out, find a natural pause and then squeeze the trigger.
The skill of the JTF2 sniper in taking down an insurgent at 3,540 meters would require tremendous math skills, great eyesight, precision of ammunition and firearms, and superb training.
For the U.S., Sergeant Bryan Kremer holds longest confirmed sniper kill shot by a U.S. soldier. He killed an Iraqi insurgent with his Barrett M82A1 rifle at 2,300 meters in 2004.