- The Washington Times - Thursday, April 13, 2017

President Trump said Thursday the dropping of the U.S. military’s largest non-nuclear bomb on an Islamic State position in Afghanistan shows “a tremendous difference” between his leadership of the armed forces and the leadership of former President Obama.

“If you look at what’s happened over the last eight weeks and compare that really to what’s happened over the past eight years, you’ll see there’s a tremendous difference,” Mr. Trump told reporters at the White House. “We have the greatest military in the world and they’ve done a job as usual. We have given them total authorization and that’s what they’re doing and frankly. That’s why they’ve been so successful lately.”

U.S. forces dropped the so-called “mother of all bombs” on an Islamic State tunnel network in Afghanistan earlier Thursday. The 22,000-pound bomb has the explosive equivalent of 11 tons of TNT.

Asked if he had personally authorized the bombing, Mr. Trump replied, “Everybody knows exactly what happened. What I do is I authorize my military.”

He called it “another very, very successful mission.”

Last week, Mr. Trump ordered a missile attack on the Syrian military after Syrian forces killed civilians in a sarin gas bombing.

Asked if the massive bomb dropped in Afghanistan was meant as a message to North Korea, whose nuclear belligerence is a rising concern again, the president demurred.

“I don’t know if this sends a message, it doesn’t make any difference if it does or not,” Mr. Trump said. “North Korea is a problem, the problem will be taken care of.”

He said “we have incredible leaders in the military, and we have [an] incredible military. We are very proud of them.”

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