Video of Taliban fighters parading in US-made armored vehicles, firing US-supplied firearms and boarding US Black Hawk helicopters after the defeat of Afghan government forces has embarrassed the White House.
Islamist insurgents, who easily took control of the country after a month-long campaign, seized large quantities of weapons, equipment and ammunition from the Afghan armed forces, much of it over the past two decades. Provided by Washington.
Social media showed Taliban fighters carrying M4 and M18 assault rifles and M24 sniper rifles, roaming the famous American Humvees, and in a video apparently wearing US-style Special Forces tactical uniforms.
The images point to a political attack on President Joe Biden for allegedly mismanaging the US withdrawal from the country after 20 years of war.
Most of the equipment has been seized by Afghan forces, who, despite two decades of training and tens of billions of dollars from the United States, recognized the capital, Kabul, over the weekend without a fight.
White House National Security Adviser Jack Sullivan said Tuesday that “we don’t have a complete picture, obviously where every article of defense material has gone.” .
“Obviously, we don’t realize they will hand it over to us easily,” he said.
The Republicans seized the entrance to attack Biden.
“Thanks to Biden’s misguided return, the Taliban are better equipped than ever today,” said Republican National Chair Rona McDaniel.
The U.S. military has provided more than 7,000 machine guns, 4,700 machine guns and 20,000 grenades to the Afghan army in recent years, according to official figures.
Afghans have also acquired artillery and reconnaissance drones from Washington, as well as more than 200 aircraft, both fixed-wing and helicopter.
However, their continued operation depended heavily on US technical assistance and spare parts.
About 40 Afghan military planes, including five UH-60 Black Hawks and 16 Russian Mi-17 helicopters, flew to Uzbekistan over the past 40 weeks to escape the Taliban’s advance, according to photos published Wednesday by defense experts Janice. And 10 A-29s. Super Tokano attacks planes.
In its 16-month draw, the Pentagon removed large quantities of its supplies from Afghanistan, handing over some of them to the Afghan army.
But the hardware provided to Afghan forces, which are now in Taliban hands, has raised concerns.
Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said Wednesday that the department was looking into the matter.
“We clearly do not want to see our goods in the hands of those who will act against our interests or the interests of the Afghan people,” Kirby told reporters.
“There are a number of policy choices that can be made, including catastrophe,” he said without elaborating.
Experts say the weapons and vehicles seized only limit the Taliban’s authority.
“The dangerous weapons the Taliban have seized are D-30 Howitzer and the assets of the Afghan Air Force,” said Jonathan Schroeder, director of the Countering Threats and Challenges program at the CNA of Washington Security Consultancy.
“It’s not clear if they have the ability to use all the air platforms they’ve acquired, but they’ve already demonstrated the ability to use these howitzers,” he said.
Still, it makes them the best direct threat to better-armed neighbors.
On the other hand, the large amount of small arms and ammunition they have inherited, Schroeder said, “can be imagined to have access to many different parts of the world and a variety of other terrorist groups.”
“Perhaps the best thing the United States can do right now is to work with Afghanistan’s neighbors to stop the flow of goods across the country’s borders,” he said.
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