On Friday morning, the U.S. Department of Defense released footage of the GBU-43/B MOAB, aka the Mother of All Bombs, striking an ISIS-controlled cave network in the Achin district of Afghanistan’s Nangarhar province. The video is grainy footage from the cameras on the modified C-130 transport plane used to deploy the weapon, but you can clearly see the massive explosion that follows.

The MOAB is the largest non-nuclear weapon in the U.S.’s arsenal (Russia’s Father of All Bombs is allegedly bigger), and until the strike at 7:33 p.m. local time on Thursday, it had never been used in combat. The 21,600-pound weapon was designed in the early 2000s during the Iraq War and has a destructive force equal to 11 tons of TNT exploding. It’s still a small fry compared to a nuclear bomb, but it also doesn’t have the related toxic fallout and radiation. Still, the MOAB is intended as a weapon of intimidation and fear, used to crush medium-soft targets like caves and canyons with its concussive force.


You can watch the DoD’s released footage of the strike below.

Jack, Inverse's Associate News Editor, is based in Brooklyn. His work has appeared in Vice News, The Daily Beast, Roads and Kingdoms and others.