The US has deployed the largest nonnuclear bomb in its inventory on an ISIS target in a remote part of far northeast Afghanistan, the Pentagon confirmed on Thursday. It was dropped from a MC-130 aircraft in the Achin district of Nangarhar province, close to the border with Pakistan, Pentagon spokesman Adam Stump said.
The U.S. military headquarters in Kabul said in a statement that the bomb was dropped at 7:32 p.m. local time Thursday on a tunnel complex in Achin district of Nangarhar province, where the Afghan affiliate of the Islamic State group has been operating.
The bombing occurred around 7:30PM local time and targeted the tunnels and fighters who pose a threat to U.S. forces running counter terror operations in the region.
"What I do is I authorize my military", Trump added.
"We have the greatest military in the world and they've done their job as usual, so we have given them total authorization". The US President Donald Trump has praised the military for successful mission.
The President has granted military commanders broader latitude to act independently on several battlefields where U.S. forces are involved, which Trump touted as making a "tremendous difference" in the fight against ISIS.
Officials at the Afghan Defense Ministry said they were first alerted to Thursday's bomb through media reports. By comparison, US aircraft commonly drop bombs that weigh between 250 to 2,000 pounds.
But while the MOAB bomb detonates with the power of 18,000 pounds of tritonal explosives, the size of its explosion pales in comparison to that of a nuclear bomb. The weapon was originally developed under the Bush administration in 2003.
General John Nicholson, commander of USA forces in Afghanistan, signed off on the use of the bomb, according to CNN sources. The BLU-82 was used multiple times in the early stages of the war in Afghanistan when US forces were closing on Osama bin Laden in the mountains of Tora Bora on the Afghan-Pakistan border.
"The United States took all precautions necessary to prevent civilian casualties and collateral damage as a result of the operation". Along with news of their statement, pro-ISIS hackers revealed that Trump topped their kill list.