KABUL, AFGHANISTAN — The U.S. Air Force dropped the largest non-nuclear bomb ever used in combat on Afghanistan yesterday.
Known to the military as “the mother of all bombs,” the 22,000-pound GBU-43 has an explosive yield equivalent to more than 11 tons of TNT.
The bomb detonates before it reaches the ground, creating a yuuuuuuuge blast radius.
In addition to the physical damage, the sheer scale of the bomb’s impact also inflicts terrible psychological impact on the enemy.
The target yesterday was the Islamic State in Khorasan, also known as ISIS-K, the Guardian reported.
ISIS’s Afghan affiliate has been using IEDs, bunkers and tunnels to dig in following recent heavy losses.
One witness on the ground said the blast was the biggest he had ever heard and targeted an area exclusively occupied by ISIS fighters. However, an Afghan MP said locals told him a teacher and his young son had died in the blast.
A U.S. special forces soldier was killed last week fighting ISIS-K in Afghanistan. The military estimates there are between 600 and 800 ISIS-K fighters in the country.
The military said the bombing was unrelated to the soldier’s death, and added it took every precaution to avoid civilian casualties.