MOAB LANDS IN THE ME­DIA

The Washington Times Daily - - POLITICS - BY JEN­NIFER HARPER

The news me­dia is al­ways poised to de­ploy its own bombs on se­lect tar­gets. There was au­then­tic hub­bub, how­ever, when word emerged that the U.S. had dropped a 30-foot, 21,600-pound, GBU43/B Mas­sive Ord­nance Air Blast Bomb (MOAB) on an Is­lamic State tar­get in Afghanistan.

Fu­eled by both won­der and in­credulity, jour­nal­ists scram­bled af­ter “MOAB” — dubbed the “Mother of all Bombs” by the Pen­tagon it­self. Head­lines and so­cial me­dia im­me­di­ately erupted; #MOAB and #MotherOfAl­lBombs instantly ap­peared on Twit­ter gar­ner­ing thou­sands of men­tions. There was some mirth as well.

“Next they are go­ing to drop the mother-in-law of all bombs, which will nag ISIS into sub­mis­sion,” tweeted Jim An­tle, Wash­ing­ton Ex­am­iner pol­i­tics edi­tor.

“ISIS gets the MOAB. Couldn’t hap­pen to a nicer bunch,” noted Na­tional Re­view writer David French, who later added, “I’m bet­ting that the blast and the mush­room cloud from the MOAB are go­ing to start ‘Amer­ica dropped a nuke’ ru­mors all over the re­gion.”

“Are peo­ple mad that Trump bombed ISIS? Were we sup­posed to send James Tay­lor?” quipped talk ra­dio host Dana Loesch.

The bomb also be­came an at­tack de­vice of a dif­fer­ent sort, used to crit­i­cize Pres­i­dent Trump. One mis­sive from a Ge­or­gia-based Demo­cratic group deemed the bomb “the mother of all dis­trac­tions,” claim­ing the event only drew pub­lic at­ten­tion from “Rus­si­a­gate.” Other vari­a­tions de­clared the bomb to be a ruse to hide an un­des­ig­nated “mother of all scan­dals.”

Mean­while, the most pop­u­lar head­line of all proved to be “What is MOAB?”, decked out fancy in­fo­graph­ics, spe­cial re­ports and old Air Force video footage. Things grew com­pli­cated once the me­dia dis­cov­ered the ex­is­tence of “FOAB,” the “Fa­ther of All Bombs” — a ther­mo­baric weapon de­vel­oped by Rus­sia and thought to be four times as pow­er­ful as MOAB.

And as a kind of fi­nale, jour­nal­ists skir­mished over MOAB vs. MOP. For the unini­ti­ated, MOP stands for GBU-57A/B Mas­sive Ord­nance Pen­e­tra­tor — a bunker-bust­ing bomb about 8,000 pounds heav­ier than MOAB.

U.S. AIR FORCE

The GBU-43/B Mas­sive Ord­nance Air Blast bomb, also known as “The Mother of all Bombs” or MOAB, was dropped on an Is­lamic State tar­get in Afghanistan on Thurs­day. #MotherOfAl­lBombs trended on Twit­ter.

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