As ISIS has made gains throughout Iraq, they have taken control of many U.S. supplied weapons from the Iraqi military. When they began their assaults on Northern Iraq, however, their primary weapons were pick-up truck mounted machine guns. The DShk machine gun, nicknamed "Dushka" (which, ironically, means "sweetie" or "dear") has been a favorite in the region for decades. The bullets are 12.7 x 108mm and fire at a rate of 60 rounds per minute. The weapon is effective to 2,000 meters and has a maximum range of 2,500 meters.
Over 70 countries have employed the Dushka in combat, and the list of these countries reads like a review of the most violent war zones of the last century. The first version of the Dushka, the DShk 1938 was the preferred weapon of the Soviets during the Second World War. The weapon was an answer to the U.S. manufactured M2 Browning. The updated NSV model is used in combat operations today. This weapon has been used by the IRA against British troops, by Iraqi troops during the Iraqi War, and by Syrian rebels during their ongoing civil war.