KABUL, Afghanistan (CBSNewYork) — The Afghan Ministry of Defense says 36 Islamic State militants were killed by a huge bomb dropped by the U.S. military on Thursday.
The GBU-43, or Massive Ordnance Air Blast bomb, is also known as the “Mother of all Bombs” due to its acronym and contains 11 tons of explosives. It is the largest non-nuclear weapon ever used in combat by the U.S. military.
“It hones in on its target. It’s designed to bunker deep inside of its target to make sure it’s destroying not things on the surface but things well under the surface,” former U.S. Army Major Mike Lyons said.
It was dropped on ISIS forces in the eastern region of Afghanistan, near the Pakistan border.
According to the Ministry of Defense statement, there were no civilian casualties and several ISIS ammunition caches and caves were destroyed.
Near the target site, many residents welcomed the action. ISIS fighters have killed many innocent civilians, CBS2 reported.
“They killed women children and elders,” one man said. “These bombs should be used more in the future.”
On Thursday, President Donald Trump called it a “very successful mission” and said he’s “very proud of our military.”
“We have the greatest military in the world, and they’ve done a great job as usual,” he said. “So we have given them total authorization, and that’s what they’ve done, and frankly that’s why they have been so successful lately.”
The Pentagon said the weapon was brought into Afghanistan just for this mission.