The US has past another milestone in war…..it has dropped the largest non-nuclear bomb ever…..why now?
I waited before posting because I wanted to see the reaction to this “new” concept in war…….
US forces in Afghanistan dropped the military’s biggest non-nuclear bomb on an Islamic State target in Afghanistan, reports the AP. Pentagon spokesman Adam Stump says it was the first-ever combat use of the bomb, formally called the GBU-43/Massive Ordnance Air Blast bomb. Based on the acronym, it has been nicknamed the “Mother of All Bombs,” with the equivalent of 11 tons of TNT. Stump says it was dropped on a cave complex used by ISIS fighters in the Achin district of Nangarhar province, close to the border with Pakistan.
- The bomb weighs 21,000 pounds and was first detonated in a 2003 test, reports Fox News. When dropped, it detonates before reaching the ground, resulting in a huge blast radius.
- See a History Channel video about the bomb and the 2003 test here.
- It is not the nation’s biggest conventional weapon, notes the Guardian. That would be the Massive Ordnance Penetrator GBU-57, a “bunker buster.”
- Back in 2007, the Guardian reported that Russia had detonated the “Father of All Bombs,” said to be four times more powerful than the US weapon. The test took place at a military base. It’s a “thermobaric bomb” with a yield of 44 tons of TNT, adds Business Insider.
- Gen. Joseph Votel, commander of US Central Command, gave the green light for use of the bomb in Afghanistan, reports CNN. White House spokesman Sean Spicer did not answer questions about whether President Trump personally approved the mission. “I’m not going to get into the details right now,” he said, deferring to the Pentagon.
NPR hits some of the logistics: “At more than 30 feet long, it’s too big to fit inside the weapons bay of a standard Air Force bomber. Instead, troops load it into the cargo compartment of a specialized transport, the MC-130 Combat Talon, which releases it over the target by opening its ramp in the same way it might for paratroopers or air-dropped supplies.”
We have been at war for almost 16 years and if this is some sort of “cure all” why has it not been used before?
When it first introduced the bomb, the Pentagon said it was designed to terrify America’s enemy into submission.
…..campaign promise to “bomb the shit” out of ISIS, the Pentagon dropped the “mother of all bombs” — one of its largest non-nuclear munitions — for the first time on Thursday, in Afghanistan. The 21,600 pound weapon was developed over a decade ago, but was never used due to concerns of possible massive civilian casualties.
The Pentagon said it used the weapon on an ISIS-affiliated group hiding in a tunnel complex in the Nangarhar province. The group, according to the Pentagon, is made up of former members of the Taliban.
The Massive Ordnance Air Blast Bomb (MOAB), nicknamed the “mother of all bombs,” has a mile-long blast radius.
There is so much more about the bomb and space is limited here so if you want to know more then there is furthering reading below……