The war in the Middle East is a complicated mess, to say the least. In addition to our servicemen and servicewomen serving overseas, the United States has spent over a billion dollars in the past decade supplying the Afghan military with adequate weaponry to combat opposing forces. Now it seems this decision has created more obstacles.
Taliban soldiers have come into possession of advanced US weaponry such as night optics, M-4’s with laser attachments and even U.S. armored Humvees, according to the Military Times.
Government officials say that the weapons are getting into opposing forces’ hands through a mixture of corruption and losses in combat areas. And with the Afghan forces due to receive UH-60 Black Hawks later this year, there is more cause for concern.
In an effort to stop the enemy from acquiring the vehicles, a spokeswoman for the 300-person Task Force, Maj. Kendra Motz, said she is ordering her men to conduct “strike” missions and destroy any U.S. vehicles in the enemy’s possession.
Former Army Ranger, Adam Routh, never thought a seemingly minor incident could turn into something so crucial. “I never experienced the [Taliban] having a large number of their fighters with this more advanced equipment, it was always just a couple here and there.”
The Afghan military has already felt the ill effects of militants having the advanced gear. According to CNN, a night patrol consisting of over 20 soldiers was wiped out after an ambush was conducted using weapons more advanced than their own.
The White House is doing everything possible to avoid sending soldiers back to participate in a war that has been ongoing for well over a decade, but they are being left little choice. The Defense Department purposed a new budget that would “revitalize” the Afghan military.
CNBC has reported that the U.S. military is looking to use low-cost weapons to fight ISIS and still have lethal results.
The problem of corruption in the Afghan military and soldiers being overrun by enemy forces remains, and there is little to be done about the situation, according to U.S. military officials. The U.S. needs to quickly determine how to stop the problem.