Buried in the $196.4 billion supplemental war spending proposal that Bush submitted to Congress on Oct. 22 is a request for $88 million to modify B-2 bombers so they can drop a Massive Ordnance Penetrator, or MOP, a conventional bomb still in development that is the most powerful weapon designed to destroy targets deep underground.
This appropriation will support a new contract with the builders of the B-2, Northrop Grumman. Some Democrats are worried that President Bush’s funding request to enable B-2 “stealth” bombers to carry a new 30,000-pound “bunker buster” bomb is a sign of plans for an attack on Iran. James P. Moran, D-Va., a senior member of the House Appropriations Defense Subcommittee, said he did not believe the MOP could be used in Iraq or Afghanistan and cited Iran as the potential target for the bomb. He said he would oppose the funding. "That's a clear red flag," Moran said. Jim McDermott, D-Wash....said the funding request was the latest of many signs that indicated Bush was contemplating an attack on Iran. McDermott said such a scenario was his "biggest fear between now and the election."
"We are not authorizing Bush to use a 30,000-pound bunker buster," he said. "They've been banging the drums the same way as they did in 2002 with Iraq."