Last November, Donald Trump promised he would “bomb the sh–” out of ISIS if he was elected. And that’s just what he’s doing.
Last Thursday, the US military dropped a GBU-43 Massive Ordnance Air Blast Bomb (MOAB) on ISIS targets in Afghanistan.
Nicknamed the “mother of all bombs” the GBU-43 is 30 feet long and weighs over 20,000 pounds. It has a blast radius of 1 mile. It’s the biggest non-nuclear bomb ever used in combat.
The MOAB was dropped at about 7:30pm (local time) in the Achin district of the Nangarhar province in eastern Afghanistan. The attack targeted a tunnel system ISIS fighters have been using to move around and surprise Afghan forces and US military advisers.
“The United States takes the fight against ISIS very seriously and in order to defeat the group we must deny them operational space, which we did,” said White House press secretary Sean Spicer.
Army Gen. John Nicholson, who authorized use of the MOAB, explains that as ISIS losses continue to mount, they are using improvised explosive devices, tunnels, and bunkers to boost defense. “This is the right munition to reduce these obstacles and maintain the momentum of our offenses.”
Precautions were taken to minimize civilian casualties and collateral damage, and Achin District Governor Ismail Shinwari says there have been no reports of injured civilians.
“If you look at what’s happened over the last eight weeks and compare that to what’s really happened over the last eight years, you’ll see there is a tremendous difference. Tremendous difference,” said President Trump, who called the bombing a “successful job.”
“We have the greatest military in the world, and they’ve done a job as usual so we have given them total authorization,” said Trump when asked if he authorized use of the bomb. “And that’s what they’re doing. And, frankly, that’s why they’ve been so successful lately.”
Former Afghan president Hamid Karzai condemned the attack, blaming the US for using his country as a “testing ground for new and dangerous weapons.”
Thursday’s bombing was an important move in the fight against ISIS, but, like the recent strike on Syria, it was also a show of force for North Korea, Russia, and China.
President Trump is changing the perception of what is normal. With his unpredictable behavior and scare tactics (what we call the crazy bas@#$%d strategy), sending a crystal clear message to other nations: don’t piss America off.
“I hope America’s adversaries are watching & now understand there’s a new sheriff in town,” tweeted Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC). “Pleased Air Force dropped MOAB against ISIL in Afghanistan. Must be more aggressive against ISIL everywhere – including Afghanistan.”