Taliban held military parade with US-made weapons in Kabul to show strength
Defense Ministry spokesman Enayatullah Khwarazmi said the parade involved the graduation of 250 newly trained soldiers.
The exercise involved dozens of US-made M117 armored security vehicles moving slowly up and down a major road in Kabul with MI-17 helicopters patrolling the air. Many soldiers carry US-made M4 assault rifles.
Most of the weapons and equipment the Taliban are using today is provided by Washington to the US-backed government in Kabul to build an Afghan national force capable of fighting the Taliban.
Those forces disbanded after Afghan President Ashraf Ghani fled Afghanistan – leaving the Taliban to take over major military assets.
Taliban officials say that pilots, mechanics and other professionals from the former Afghan National Army will be merged into a new force, which has also begun wearing regular uniforms in lieu of military uniforms. The traditional Afghan clothes worn by their warriors.
According to a report late last year by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (Sigar), the US government has transferred to the Afghan government more than $28 billion in defense items and services, including weapons and ammunition. pharmaceuticals, vehicles, night vision equipment, aircraft and surveillance systems, from 2002 to 2017.
Some planes were flown to neighboring Central Asian countries by fleeing Afghan forces, but the Taliban have inherited other planes. It is not yet clear how many are in service.