Mat­tis: US won’t re­veal blast toll from ‘mother of all bombs’

Sun Sentinel Broward Edition - - NATION & WORLD -

TELAVIV, Is­rael— The ear-split­ting ex­plo­sion from Amer­ica’s “mother of all bombs” has been fol­lowed by cal­cu­lated si­lence about the dam­age it in­flicted.

De­fense Sec­re­tary Jim Mat­tis said Thurs­day that he does not in­tend to dis­cuss dam­age es­ti­mates from last­week’s use of the mil­i­tary’s most pow­er­ful non-nu­clear bomb on an Is­lamic State group strong­hold in Afghanistan.

The April 13 at­tack on a sus­pected Is­lamic State tun­nel and cave com­plex near the Pak­istani bor­der marked the first-ever com­bat use of the bomb, known of­fi­cially as a GBU-43B, or Mas­sive Ord­nance Air Blast bomb. U.S. mil­i­tary of­fi­cials have said the 11- ton bomb ef­fec­tively neu­tral­ized the mil­i­tants’ de­fen­sive po­si­tion.

The Afghan gov­ern­ment has es­ti­mated a death toll of more than 90 mil­i­tants. It said no civil­ians were killed.

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