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Taliban hold a Military Parade in Kabul with US-made weaponry as a display of power

Taliban Military Parade

On Sunday, Taliban fighters performed a military parade in Kabul, displaying captured American-made armored vehicles and Russian helicopters as part of their gradual transition from insurgents to genuine standing armies. The Taliban have been rebelling against combatants for two decades, but they have overhauled their forces using the massive stockpile of weapons and equipment left behind after the old Western-backed government that collapsed in August.

The parade was held in conjunction with the graduation of 250 newly trained soldiers, according to Enayatullah Khwarazmi, a spokesman for the defense ministry. Hundreds of M117 armored security vehicles from the United States drove slowly up and down the main Kabul route, with MI-17 helicopters patrolling overhead. Many soldiers were armed with M4 assault rifles made in the United States. The majority of the weapons and equipment used by Taliban troops are those supplied by the United States to the American-backed government in Kabul in order to build an Afghan national force capable of battling the Taliban.

With Afghan President Ashraf Ghani’s departure from Afghanistan, those troops disintegrated, allowing the Taliban to seize control of important military assets. Taliban officials have stated that former Afghan National Army pilots, mechanics, and other professionals will be incorporated into a new army, which has also begun wearing conventional military uniforms rather than the traditional Afghan clothes used by their troops. Now with the Military Parade, Taliban is trying to send out a message to the world.

From 2002 to 2017, the US government transferred to the Afghan government more than $28 billion worth of defense articles and services, including weapons, ammunition, vehicles, night-vision devices, aircraft, and surveillance systems, according to a report released late last year by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction. Some of the planes were flown into neighboring Central Asian countries by retreating Afghan soldiers, but others were passed down to the Taliban. It’s uncertain how many are currently operational.

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By TIS Staffer
the authorBy TIS Staffer

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