How the Taliban Overran the Afghan Army, Built by the U.S. Over 20 Years

KABUL—The Afghan govt outpost in Imam Sahib, a district of northern Kunduz province, held out for two months immediately after currently being surrounded by the Taliban. At first, elite commando units would arrive after a week on a resupply run. Then, these runs became a lot more scarce, as did the supplies.

“In the past times, there was no food stuff, no h2o and no weapons,” mentioned trooper Taj Mohammad, 38. Fleeing in one armored personnel provider and one Ford Ranger, the remaining men eventually designed a run to the relative protection of the provincial cash, which collapsed months later. They remaining guiding another eleven APCs to the Taliban.

As district immediately after district fell in this summer’s Taliban offensive, devoid of significantly obvious assistance from the Afghan national army and law enforcement forces, other soldiers just designed the calculation that it wasn’t well worth combating anymore—especially if the Taliban available them safe passage house, as they typically did.

“Everyone just surrendered their guns and ran away,” mentioned Rahimullah, a twenty five-yr soldier who joined the army a yr ago and served in the Shahr-e-Bozorg district of northeastern Badakhshan province. “We did not obtain any aid from the central govt, and so the district fell devoid of any combating.”

Afghanistan’s national army and law enforcement forces, theoretically numbering 350,000 men and trained and geared up at massive charge by the U.S. and Western allies, had been intended to be a highly effective deterrent to the Taliban. That is one motive why President Biden, when he announced in April his decision to withdraw all American forces from Afghanistan, expressed self-confidence in the Afghan military’s capability to keep floor.