The Biden administration’s bungled withdrawal from Afghanistan is a gift that keeps on giving, according to a new report. The Taliban is currently in possession of almost $7.2 billion in U.S.-supplied weapons, ammunition, and aircraft.
The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR), the federal watchdog group that oversees American expenditures in the nation, issued the report in late February.
It specifically listed 78 military aircraft worth $923.3 million, 9,524 air-to-ground munitions costing $6.54 million, along with over 40,000 vehicles and more than 300,000 weapons.
The report said that virtually all night vision, surveillance, communications, and biometric equipment the U.S. supplied to Afghanistan were also abandoned.
The US armed & equipped ANDSF, spending $18.6 billion. This included roughly 600,000 weapons of all calibers, nearly 300 aircraft, over 80,000 vehicles & communications equipment. Now, the Taliban controls most of these weapons & equipment. Here is a list SIGAR just published. pic.twitter.com/xJ3sIOziBY
— Habib Khan (@HabibKhanT) February 28, 2023
The Pentagon told SIGAR that there is no realistic way to retrieve the weapons left behind, considering the U.S. does not recognize the Taliban as a legitimate government.
The imagery coming out of the country is startling.
The Taliban reportedly is patrolling the countryside in U.S. vehicles such as pickup trucks and armored carriers. The terrorist group also operates special forces equipped with the latest in American technology.
They are even recruiting former Afghan pilots to fly abandoned U.S. planes and Mi-17 helicopters.
To make matters worse, some of the more advanced equipment and technology, including software and hardware, is vulnerable to being inspected by foreign adversaries.
The Republican-led House is having the first public hearing on the messy withdrawal this week as representatives fulfill their pledge to hold the administration accountable. GOP members want to know why so much was allowed to fall into enemy hands.
House Foreign Affairs Committee chairman Michael McCaul (R-TX) reported that the White House rejected committee efforts to gather documents that may shed light on the bungled operation.
Adding to the fallout, experts now say that weapons from the U.S. withdrawal are appearing in conflicts in other parts of the world. NBC News reported that militants in Kashmir are sporting American-made M4s, M16s, and other U.S. military hardware.
The source, authorities say, is a flood of weapons coming out of Afghanistan and ending up in terrorists’ hands. And that is a pipeline that began in Washington.