Exactly one year ago, the U.S. military deployed the so-called Mother of All Bombs (MOABs), the biggest non-nuclear bomb, on the stronghold of militants affiliated with the hardliner Islamic State (IS) outfit in Achin district of eastern Nangarhar province with the objective to eliminate the group and curb its operations in the already insurgency-hit Afghanistan.
Contrary to expectations, the passage of time has proved that the operations of the radical group have drastically increased instead of dropping down.
It was April 13, 2017 that certain media outlets reported the explosive news of use of the biggest non-nuclear bomb by U.S. military against IS hideouts in Mohmandara mountains of Achin district, which reportedly killed 36 insurgents and injuring scores others.
The bomb had raised the rays of hope among Afghans including the Afghan security forces that the using 10-tons non-nuclear bomb against IS in Afghanistan gives the message of dismantling the radical group in the already war-torn country.
A spokesman for Afghan Defense Ministry Mohammad Radmanesh, in talks with local media on the first anniversary of the attack April 13 asserted that the Afghan security forces are stationed in the former bases of IS and preventing the militants to enter Afghanistan.
However, the militants, according to Afghans, have expanded their grip in the neighboring Khogiani, Pachiragam and Chaparhar districts and a year later surfaced in the neighboring Kunar, Nuristan province as well as in northern Jawzjan province.
The fanatic group has also conducted series of deadly suicide attacks in Kabul, killing scores of people mostly civilians over the past one year.
Afghans believe that the Islamic State group’s fighters have shifted to Afghanistan after their defeats in Iraq and Syria.
Such failures of curbing the IS activities in Afghanistan has raised questions over U.S.-led coalition’s seriousness in the so-called war on terror.
Media outlets, quoting the Afghan Defense Ministry and the NATO-led Resolute Support mission in Afghanistan, reported the strength of IS militants stands between 1,500 to 2,000 in the country.
Afghan former president Hamid Karzai has also described the hardliner IS group as a danger to the region and said the group has emerged in Afghanistan during the full-scale military presence of U.S. and NATO-led forces in the country.