This week, propaganda videos posted on the Taliban channel show insurgents in the Badri 313 Battalion holding U.S.-made weapons and U.S. gear stolen from the Afghan forces. Propaganda posted by Taliban affiliated channels also shows the insurgents brandishing the U.S. weapons, gear, and uniforms while watching parts of the Afghanistan capital.
The Taliban is now using U.S.-made weaponry and gear
In one picture posted by the Taliban affiliated channel, the insurgents are raising a Taliban flag in the same way as the iconic World War II photo wherein six U.S. Marines were hoisting the U.S. flag during the Battle of Iowa Jima.
Shiv Aroor, a television anchor and senior editor at India Today, stated that these videos and pictures published by the Taliban-related channels were recently revealed. He added that these insurgents are special operations forces of the Taliban. They are being deployed not only in Kabul, but in other parts of the country. He added that the pictures show a completely different image.
بدري ۳۱۳ قطعه
د ارګ او د کابل ښار د حساسو سیمو امنیت په غاړه لري pic.twitter.com/dSSgnuAUbM
— Qari Saeed Khosty (@SaeedKhosty) August 17, 2021
The Indian news anchor also noted that these images show the Taliban are not the sons of shepherds, farmers, or a bunch of terrorist groups; rather, they are now groups of special operations that are comparable with the best forces in the world.
Aroor likewise noted that there is plenty of reason to believe the terrorists could increase their strength now that the Taliban forces are in power. He added that the world should expect to observe more of the Taliban’s special forces in the upcoming weeks and months.
Billions spent by the U.S. to Afghan forces benefitted the Taliban
On the other hand, the Sinclair Broadcasting Group likewise echoed the same message, stating that the Badri 313 group of the Taliban is different from any other Taliban forces. They noted that they were dressed to look like U.S. forces, wearing camouflage, body armor, and combat boots.
Now, the Taliban are likewise carrying M$ carbines and uses armored Humvees that were supplied by the United States. Ian Bremmer, the founder and president of Eurasia Group, also posted a picture of Taliban insurgents with a caption stating that they are wearing their new “American gear.”
— ian bremmer (@ianbremmer) August 21, 2021
According to a U.S. official, between the years 2002 to 2017, the United States supplied the Afghan forces weaponry with an estimated amount of $28 billion. However, all of the weaponry that has not been destroyed is now owned by the Taliban. The Taliban’s seizure of U.S. weapons, including advanced aircraft, serves as propaganda equipment since they cannot operate the plane without the proper skills and training.
Elias Yousif, the Deputy Director Security Assistance Monitor of the Center for International Policy, stated that whenever armed militants seize U.S. weapons, it is a psychological win and serves as a status symbol.