The U.S. Department of Defense released video Friday showing the deployment of a 22,000-pound bomb known as the “mother of all bombs” against a complex of ISIS-controlled caves in eastern Afghanistan.
The Pentagon on Thursday announced the use of the bomb, formally known as the GBU-43, or massive ordnance air blast (MOAB) bomb — the first time it has been utilized since its development in 2003. In a statement, U.S. Forces – Afghanistan wrote, “The strike was designed to minimize the risk to Afghan and U.S. forces conducting clearing operations in the area.”
The nearly 30-second, black-and-white video shows a target aimed at a valley surrounded by mountainous terrain. Within a few seconds, a black speck appears at the top of the screen, dashing straight down into the valley.
The bomb explodes upon striking its target, releasing a massive shockwave across the valley and thick, black smoke. The smoke then rises and plumes into a huge mushroom cloud.
The MOAB bomb is the most powerful non-nuclear weapon ever used in combat and one of the largest bombs in the U.S. arsenal.
The bomb was dropped from the rear of an MC-130 aircraft. The MOAB is so large that it is carried in the cargo hold of the aircraft then rolled out the plane’s rear door toward its target.
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SOURCE: ABC News, Adam Kelsey, Luis Martinez and Morgan Winsor