Hidden warehouse-sized weapons stores containing thousands of bullets, missiles and more have been found leaving President Joe Biden’s threat of future ‘over the horizon’ attacks battered
Image: Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
Two secret arms dumps left by US forces in case they return to Afghanistan have been found by the Taliban.
The caches – earmarked for US counter-terrorism “over the horizon” attacks against al-Qaeda and Islamic State – were hidden to help the US quickly attack terrorist organisations.
Both warehouse-sized stores contained hundreds of thousands of bullets, heavy weapons, missiles, survival supplies and even spare helicopters parts.
Sources told The Mirror the supplies contained spares for attack choppers as they would be essential for an on-the-ground mission against networks.
It means President Joe Biden ’s threat of future “over the horizon” attacks launched against terrorists without having a permanent Afghan base are battered.
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The discoveries by the Taliban in the towns of Mazer-e-Sharif , in the north, and Herat, in the west of Afghanistan are deeply embarrassing for the Pentagon.
They had been left there as a contingency against a terrorist resurgence across the region as US troops withdrew to Kabul and faced having no in-country base.
It also meant a massive special forces and commando raid on terrorists would be well-supplied for weeks without having to uplift heavy equipment.
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A source said: “This is one of the biggest blows to America in terms of future operations against al-Qaeda, Islamic State and other emerging groups.
“As a logistical supplies dump already in-country the caches would have been an invaluable resource serving a large-scale counter-terror operation.
“It meant there was a secret heavy punch against terrorism lying in reserve in case US troops needed to return suddenly, without bringing in huge supplies.
“It is enormously difficult for the US to source a supply chain from a neighbouring country airfield as so many areas around Afghanistan are hostile.
“They didn’t want this to get out as it piles even more embarrassment on an utter shambles of a withdrawal.”
The Taliban took US -led western forces by surprise after a lightning uprising across Afghanistan led to them storming Kabul on August 15.
It sparked one of the biggest airlifts out of a war-zone since the Vietnam war but left thousands of locals stranded in Afghanistan, facing a grim future.
Taliban gunmen have launched door-to-door searches for people suspected of having worked with the west in 20 years of fighting.
And many suspects are believed to have been killed as the new rulers of Afghanistan appear to be clamping down with their iron rule nationwide.