White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer confirmed the use of GBU 43 bomb, Washington’s most powerful non-nuclear bomb in Afghanistan to destroy a tunnels and caves network of the Islamic State.
‘At 7 p.m. local time in Afghanistan last night the U.S. military used the GBU 43 weapon. It is a large, powerful and accurately delivered weapon. We targeted a system of tunnels and caves that ISIS fighters used to move around freely making it easy for them to target the U.S. military advisors and afghan forces in the area,’ Spicer said in press briefing on Thursday.
Spicer added that they used all necessary precaution to avoid civilian causalities and collateral damage. Earlier, CNN reported that the U.S. military has dropped its most powerful non-nuclear bomb in the Achin district of Afghanistan’s Nangarhar province to target the Islamic State.
The Nangarhar province borders with Pakistan. According to the report, a GBU-43/B Massive Ordnance Air Blast Bomb, nicknamed MOAB and also known as the “mother of all bombs” is a 21,600-pound, GPS-guided munition that is America’s most powerful non-nuclear bomb. This is the first time a MOAB has been used in the battlefield, according to the US officials. This munition was developed during the Iraq War.
Video footage of MOAB:
Here are six quick facts about the bomb:
1) It was first tested in March 2003, just days before the start of the Iraq war.
2) It weighs 21,000 pounds or 9525 kg.
3) It’s 30 feet long and 40.5 inches in diameter.
4) It is a ‘smart bomb’ guided by a satellite and explodes 6 metres above the ground, which increases its impact.
5) It’s not the largest bomb, that honour belongs to the T-12a 19,800 kg bomb, also known as the Cloudmaker.
6) Compared to a nuclear bomb, the MOAB has a smaller blast radium but a nuclear bomb weighs considerably less. The nuclear bomb dropped on Hiroshima had a yield of 14,500 tonnes of TNT and weighed half the amount of the MOAB.