"Rain down hell"? Whoa, now that puts a whole new spin on "surgical strike".Elementary my dear Watson. Fighter jets go in first because they're faster and have the ability to rain down hell. At the least, it would've disrupted the attack. Many insurgents know that after the jets come the troop transports, a more lethal problem that radical cowards would rather not face.
But if you send the jets just for shock appeal, it'd be good if they could actually see them, wouldn't it, seein' as how it was nite-time and all?
This whole line reminds me of the SNL Belushi skit, "What if Napoleon Had B-52 bombers?"