No need for Trump's approval to use massive bomb

The U.S. general commanding North Atlantic Treaty Organisation forces in Afghanistan warned early February that he needs thousands more troops and accused Russian Federation of seeking to prop up the Taliban.

The bomb smashed the IS's remote mountain hideouts, a tunnel-and-cave complex that had been mined against conventional ground attacks, engulfing the remote area in a huge mushroom cloud and towering flames.

The Site Intelligence Group, which tracks extremist organizations, reported Friday on a statement from the Afghan Taliban condemning the US for its "terrorist" attack.

The MOAB was actually developed using the parts of existing bombs by the US Air Force back in 2002 and "what it does is basically suck out all of the oxygen and lights the air on fire", said Bill Roggio of the Foundation for Defence of Democracies think tank, to the Air Force Times.

"This was the right weapon against the right target", Gen. John Nicholson, the commander of USA and allied forces in Afghanistan, told reporters Friday.

Citing U.S. and Afghan officials, it adds, "The blast destroyed three underground tunnels as well as weapons and ammunition, but no civilians were hurt".

Afghan officials say it killed as many as 36 suspected Islamic State militants, although a news agency affiliated with Islamic State in the Middle East carried a statement denying that the group had suffered casualties in the attack.

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That said, even if the United States military is able to insulate defence policy from Mr Trump's temperament, there is little indication the current offensive against ISIS-K in Afghanistan will be able to improve the local security environment in any substantive way.

Nicholson said thorough surveillance was conducted in the area to ensure no civilian casualties. Senior US officials also claimed that no civilian deaths were reported.

"Let me be clear - we will not relent in our mission to fight alongside our Afghan comrades to destroy ISIS-K in 2017", he said, referring to the terror group's regional branch. Pentagon video showed the bomb striking a mountainside overlooking a river valley with a giant blast that overwhelms the landscape and sent up a massive column of black smoke.

USA drops Mother of all bombs on IS militants in Afghanistan. The US military previously estimated ISIS had 600 to 800 active fighters in the area but was unclear whether it had hoped to strike more. President Ashraf Ghani and Chief Executive Dr Abdullah Abdullah defended the dropping of GBU-43, the largest non-nuclear bomb it has ever used in combat operations.

Earlier, President Doland Trump praised America's military for firing the bomb in Afghanistan.

Asked Thursday in Washington whether he authorized the strike, President Donald Trump told reporters at the White House, "We have the greatest military in the world and they've done a job, as usual". This is also going to add to distrust of the United States, which 16 years into their occupation of Afghanistan is already in short supply.

Deptula, Cancien and USA military officials said the United States had an even larger bomb in its inventory - the 14,000kg GBU-57 Massive Ordnance Penetrator (MOP), which would be more effective against North Korea's nuclear test site, given its ability to penetrate reinforced concrete and anti-blast steel doors. "It was an earsplitting blast", said Shah Wali, 46, who lives in the village of Goor Gari, 15 kilometers (9 miles) from the border with Nangarhar.

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