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Who's Next: US Drops MOAB in Afghanistan Amid Rising Tensions With N Korea

© REUTERS / US Department of DefenseA combination of still images taken from a video released by the U.S. Department of Defense on April 14, 2017 shows (clockwise) the explosion of a MOAB, or "mother of all bombs", when it struck the Achin district of the eastern province of Nangarhar, Afghanistan
A combination of still images taken from a video released by the U.S. Department of Defense on April 14, 2017 shows (clockwise) the explosion of a MOAB, or mother of all bombs, when it struck the Achin district of the eastern province of Nangarhar, Afghanistan - Sputnik International
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The Pentagon has used the GBU-43B Massive Ordnance Air Blast (MOAB), the largest non-nuclear bomb in its arsenal, in an anti-Daesh mission in Afghanistan as a show of force meant to intimidate Washington's adversaries and opponents and boost Donald Trump's approval ratings, defense analyst Igor Korotchenko told Sputnik.

"The Pentagon's unwarranted missile attack against Syria has shown that President Donald Trump is prone to military braggadocio aimed primarily at intimidating opponents, as well as those countries that are not inclined to support Washington's adventurism," the analyst said. "The first military use of the most powerful non-nuclear weapon should be viewed in the context of the United States continuing to coerce and pressure its rivals."

In this July 24, 2016 file photo, a US military personal stands guard during a graduation ceremony for Afghan troops, in Lashkargah, capital of southern Helmand province, Afghanistan. - Sputnik International
Trump's Strike in Afghanistan 'Not Meaningful in Any Strategic Sense'
Korotchenko suggested that the operation in Afghanistan was timed to coincide with the US Navy deploying the Carl Vinson Strike Group to the Korean Peninsula and could possibly herald a future military operation against Pyongyang. 

The MOAB, commonly known as the Mother of All Bombs, was used for the first time in combat on Thursday in Afghanistan's Nangarhar province to destroy a tunnel system used by Daesh.

Korotchenko pointed out that dropping this type of a bomb in Afghanistan was an odd choice of a weapon from the military point of view, which indicates that the operation was designed as a show of force.

"Practically speaking, using such a potent weapon in counterterrorism operations is an excess since there are other armaments, for instance bunker busters, that could reach underground tunnels, as well as other so-called 'piercing' weapons and cruise missiles," he explained.

File Photo from US Air Force of the GBU-43 Bomb - Sputnik International
Trump Proud of Using 'Mother of All Bombs', But It Hardly Can Impact Afghan War
Russian Senator Igor Morozov, a member of the Federation Council's Foreign Affairs Committee, told Sputnik that the use of MOAB could trigger a new round of the arms race. He described the move as "an attempt to establish global hegemony with an element of a military threat which risks sparking a new round of the arms race and fueling tensions in the world."

Morozov further said that the United States needs a new area to test new weapons, especially when it comes to determining the damage that they are capable of dealing. He named Afghanistan as the country where the Pentagon will most likely test its weapons since the US has invested a lot to increase its military presence in the country.

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