With the devastating effects of the MOAB taking out up to 100 combatants last week, many in the media and military are asking whether a weapon like this may be the future of non-nuclear warfare.
There has been a mixed reception to President Trump’s actions in bombing the Syrian airfield with Tomahawk missiles, but it appears that no such compunction is in place with regards to the “Mother Of All Bombs”. The MSM has been doing largely straight reporting with just information and comments from relevant sources.
So why the difference in approach? It is clearly not about the loss of life (more deaths with the MOAB), and it is clearly not about intention (both were enacted to take out Islamic fighters with a poor track record on human rights). Could it be because only one of the military missions can be used to effectively denigrate the President?
With Syria, there is an opportunity to label Trump as a Hawk, a “patsy for Assad” or “a patsy for the anti-Assad forces”. And for those in the anti-democratic press, this is too good a chance to miss.
The Syrian strikes were exactly what former President Obama threatened to do with his “red lines”, if it was supported then, why not now? The story is deeper than it first appears.
The so-called “Mother of All Bombs” has certainly earned its moniker, at least if the latest Islamic State group death tolls from last week’s MOAB attack in Afghanistan is any indication.
According to a report in Sunday’s Wall Street Journal, Afghan military officials said that nearly 100 bodies had been pulled from the complex of tunnels hit by the largest non-nuclear bomb in America’s arsenal in last week’s attack.
The “Mother of All Bombs” is the colloquial name for the GBU-43/B Massive Ordnance Air Blast.
According to Fox News, at a staggering 21,000 pounds, it certainly earns the nickname; it was so large it actually had to be kicked out the back of the C-130 that dropped it on the Achin district of Nangarhar Province, an area of Afghanistan on the Pakistani border.
The bomb was designed to penetrate bunkers and tunnels — important since, as The Daily Caller reported, the Islamic State group leadership in Afghanistan had retreated to a tunnel complex that was very difficult for troops to penetrate.
The “Mother of All Bombs” explodes not when it hits the ground, but six feet above it. That means that the blast goes downwards instead of radiating from the site of the blast, collapsing tunnels and caves below the surface.
“This was the first time that we encountered an extensive obstacle to our progress,” Gen. John Nicholson, the top military general in Afghanistan, said on Friday. “It was the right time to use it tactically against the right target on the battlefield.”
While there is some controversy over the use of the MOAB, Nicholson was right — it was the correct weapon for the correct circumstance. One can only hope that the Islamic State group gets the message.
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