In a recent article by Jillian Kay Melchior for HeatStreet, she reported on activists upset at calling the MOAB the “Mother Of All Bombs.” Used to great effect in Afghanistan against an ISIS tunnel complex, apparently people were upset at the sexist nature of the moniker.
For the record, and not mentioned at all in her article, the MOAB’s official name is not what you hear used commonly in the media. According to the Directory of U.S. Military Rockets and Missiles, the GBU-43/B MOAB officially means Massive Ordnance Air Blast.
The MOAB is the largest conventional, non-nuclear weapon in the US inventory. Due to its size and payload, it earned its catchy nickname. That’s what soldiers do. In the infantry, we called the sun “Bob” – Big Orange Ball. Why? Simple. Why not?
Mother of All Bombs fits neatly into the designation. Nothing is meant to be sexist by it.