U.S. abandons $7.1 billion in weapons, vehicles, fighter jets in Afghanistan
The Pentagon reportedly revealed to Congress that US Marines left behind military equipment worth more than $7 billion in Afghanistan last August.
From 2005 to 2021, Washington provided $18.6 billion in armament to Afghan government troops, with $7.1 billion of that equipment remaining in the war-torn nation after the US pullout on August 30, CNN reported on Wednesday.
According to the Pentagon assessment, some of the abandoned equipment, including 78 planes left at Kabul airport, was permanently deactivated before US forces withdrew.
After Washington left, more than $920 million in US planes and 40,000 military vehicles remained in Afghanistan.
Also left behind were communications gear, more than 300,000 weapons and almost all of the 42,000 pieces of specialized equipment that had been given to Afghan government forces.
Those pieces included radio systems, encryption devices, transmitters, night vision goggles, surveillance gear and “biometric and positioning equipment,” the Pentagon said.
Most of the 9,524 air-to-ground munitions that were left behind were non-precision explosives.
Ukraine was the beneficiary of some equipment that had originally been earmarked for Afghanistan.
The report showed that five Mi-17 helicopters were officially transferred to Ukraine this year after previously being sent to the former Soviet republic for maintenance work.
Other equipment shifted to Ukraine included 37,000 howitzer shells, as well as rifle ammunition, grenade cartridges and 119,000 82mm mortar rounds.