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US to leave billions of dollars of military equipment behind in Afghanistan

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Today as America enters into its final six months in Afghanistan, it has been decided that more military equipment than first envisaged is to be either destroyed, sold off or gifted as a legacy to the Afghan National Army (ANA) and Afghan National Police (ANP), as it is unviable both financially and logistically to transport it back home.

Estimates vary as to the final monetary value, but something in the region of $6 billion seems likely according to sources within the US Army.

Although a staggering figure to take in, the cost of trying to move it back home would be even more eye watering.

Equipment to be left behind is classified as either "white gear" (computers, generators, etc) or "green gear" (trucks, armored vehicles, etc).

The most valued piece of military kit to be abandoned in significant numbers, is that of the highly effective family of MRAP (Mine Resistant Ambush Protected) vehicles.

These range in size and role, but a share a common degree of armored protection that is significantly better than that of earlier generation armored vehicles.

Indeed, many US soldiers owe their lives to them, as since their introduction vehicle borne casualties figures have significantly dropped.

Offering them to the Afghan army, is sadly not an option, as MRAP vehicles require a high degree of specialized support that is just not available in Afghanistan at this present time.

Leaving military gear behind in a conflict zone is of course nothing new, it's just the sheer magnitude that is shocking.

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