File not found: The Biden administration is reportedly expunging information from U.S. government websites that relates to the massive amount of military equipment provided to the Afghan security forces in the past 20 years.
At a cost to the taxpayer of as much as $85 billion, the hardware has now fallen into the hands of the Taliban after the Afghan government collapsed almost overnight, recasting the terrorist organization as perhaps one of the most powerful militaries in the region.
The U.S. State Department has more or less admitted that it either ordered or encouraged the online scrubbing of the material by multiple government agencies, including audits of the equipment provided to the now-defunct Afghan military and police.
“The safety of our Afghan contacts is of utmost importance to us. The State Department advised other federal agencies to review their web properties for content that highlights cooperation/participation between an Afghan citizen and the USG or a USG partner and remove from public view if it poses a security risk,” a spokesperson told the Washington Examiner.
Non-military information is also reportedly being deleted.
Justifying or spinning the deletions on the basis of security concerns is interesting given that U.S. officials allegedly previously handed over to the Taliban a list of names of American citizens and allies who were seeking to get access to the Kabul airport for evacuation.
An unnamed Defense Department official ominously lamented that what some might describe as oversharing constituted a “kill list.”
A mind-blowing graphic in today's Times on what $85bn worth of lost equipment means in practice for the Taliban: pic.twitter.com/GDcuNQbb6P
— Will Brown (@_Will_Brown) August 29, 2021
“U.S. taxpayers paid for these audits and the U.S.-provided equipment, and citizens should be able to follow the money and hold the Biden administration accountable,” Forbes contributor and OpenTheBooks.com founder Adam
U.S. CENTCOM Commander Frank McKenzie (plus other officials) has insisted that the troops destroyed or deactivated some of the equipment, including aircraft, before exiting the country on August 31 pursuant to President Joe Biden’s botched and humiliating withdrawal plan, which tragically also resulted in the suicide-bomb murder of 13 brave American troops.
Social media has depicted Taliban fighters taking victory laps, however, with left-behind U.S. equipment, including parading around in Kandahar, the country’s second-largest city.
The Taliban held a 'Victory Parade' with U.S. military equipment, and in full U.S. military uniform.
Joe Biden’s incompetence knows no bounds. pic.twitter.com/hsXqgKThii
— Errol Webber (@ErrolWebber) September 1, 2021
— C4H10FO2P (@markito0171) August 14, 2021
— WorldOnAlert (@worldonalert) August 15, 2021
Biden officials have been telling journalists for weeks that the Taliban won't be able to use the US military equipment they seized. They had validators echo that talking point and write it up as own analysis.
Turns out, the Taliban can use the US military equipment they seized. https://t.co/lhfh0ltpaz
— Omri Ceren (@omriceren) September 1, 2021
Armed to the teeth with the American equipment and wearing the American gear abandoned thanks to Biden’s gross negligence. https://t.co/kXYnpSe9PD
— Boris Ryvkin (@BRyvkin) August 30, 2021
In a statement earlier this week, ex-President Donald Trump declared that “In addition to the obvious, ALL EQUIPMENT should be demanded to be immediately returned to the United States and that includes every penny of the $85 billion dollars in cost. If it is not handed back, we should either go in with unequivocal Military force and get it, or at least bomb the hell out of it.”
“If the Trump administration started vanishing government reports and justifying their actions with weak, obviously political excuses, can anyone with a straight face say it wouldn’t lead the nightly news?”wondered rhetorically.
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