Death toll from 'Mother Of All Bombs' climbs to 94
- Author: Leroy Wright Apr 18, 2017,
Apr 18, 2017, 2:32
The bomb used in the strike is claimed to be the biggest non-nuclear bomb.
The area where the bomb has been dropped is mostly mountainous and sparsely populated, therefore, one can not say for sure how much effective the attack has been in addressing the IS threat or what was the collateral damage. It hasn't said how much it cost to develop the bomb or how many of them exist.
USA forces in Afghanistan on Thursday struck an Islamic State tunnel complex in eastern Afghanistan with "the mother of all bombs", the largest non-nuclear weapon every used in combat by the us military, Pentagon officials said.
For four weeks prior to the bombing, Afghan special forces tried to penetrate the area, but they were unsuccessful due to the hard terrain and a belt of improvised explosive devises planted by ISIS fighters, Gen. Dawlat Waziri, spokesman for Afghanistan's Defense Ministry said.
Other analysts suggest that the MOAB device was employed on the IS hideout because that target was a flawless opportunity to demonstrate overwhelming USA military might.
Sen. Jim Inhofe, an Oklahoma Republican, said the decision to drop the bomb "sends a clear message that the United States is committed and determined to defeating ISIS and other terrorist organizations in Afghanistan". "It is entrenched and away from civilians".
Thursday's strike killed 36 Islamic State militants, according to the Afghan Ministry of Defense. The weapon from which it evolved, the BLU-82 (Bomb Live Unit-82), was about half MOAB's size and was an unguided, or dumb, bomb. The official said Nicholson wanted to demonstrate to leaders of the Islamic State affiliate in Afghanistan the seriousness of his determination to eliminate the group as a military threat.
The U.S. estimates 600 to 800 IS fighters are present in Afghanistan, mostly in Nangarhar. "They kidnapped wives and daughters and forced them to marry fighters", he said.
Afghanistan has been in a state of war off and on from way before Russian Federation attempted to invade in 1979.
Bill Goodfellow, executive director of the Center for International Policy, argues that the fight against IS in Afghanistan should not come at the expense of ignoring the Taliban. It was so massive it had to be dropped from the rear of a cargo plane, said the Pentagon.
Islamic State "does complicate things" in Afghanistan, he added, because they represent another violent extremist group operating in the country, "and they seem to be rather hardened and many of them are foreigners".
"I thought there was a bombing just outside my home", he said."That's where we should be focusing our attention".
"This was the right weapon against the right target", Gen. John W. Nicholson, Jr., commander for USA forces in Afghanistan, said Friday at a news conference.
"This was the first time that we encountered an extensive obstacle to our progress", he said on Friday of a joint Afghan-US operation that has been targeting IS since March.