The Russian military says the "father of all bombs" is the most powerful thermobaric bomb of its kind, four times more powerful than the American "mother of all bombs," the largest non-nuclear bomb in the U.S. arsenal and the largest non-nuclear bomb the United States has ever used in combat.
Based on the specifications the Russian military has released, analysts say Russia could be right.
"We believe it's real," said retired Col. Rick Francona, military analyst and former US military attache in Syria. "The Russians have been among the pioneers of these thermobaric bombs."
"I don't have any doubt that they could build this," Francona said. "It falls under their technological capabilities."
"The FOAB, if what has been reported about it is true, is the most powerful non-nuclear bomb in the world," said retired Col. Cedric Leighton, military analyst and former member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
FOAB has never been used in combat.
"The FOAB is a thermobaric bomb, which means that its payload explodes at much higher temperatures," Leighton said. "The result is that living things within the area of detonation are vaporised, making the FOAB a spectacularly terrible weapon."
Russia announced that the bomb was first tested in 2007. In a national broadcast that aired on September 11, 2007, deputy chief of the general staff of the Russian Armed Forces at the time, Alexander Rukshin, said the first test of a new bomb, capable of sending shock waves with the power of a nuclear bomb, was completed.
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