As Afghan War Nears End, US to Spend Billions on Shipping Weapons Back HomeSubmitted by DJP333 on Wed, 09/25/2013 - 12:45
Going to war isn’t cheap, but neither is ending one. As the United States prepares to make its grand exit from Afghanistan at the end of next year, the Pentagon is planning on spending at least $3 billion just to send leftover equipment back to the US.
The astronomical shipping cost was confirmed in USA TODAY this week by reporter Tom Vanden Brook, who wrote that roughly 1.5 million pieces of gear will have to go home before the December 2014 deadline for US to exit Afghanistan.
By then, the US will have spent over 13 years overseas involved in a lengthy operation that began following the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 and remains active even two years after al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden was assassinated by American troops in neighboring Pakistan. Around 60,000 US troops are still stationed in Afghanistan.
At the beginning of 2013, Vanden Brook wrote, the military was left wondering what to do with around $28 billion worth of gear that wouldn’t be needed much longer overseas. Around $11 billion worth of those items have since been shuffled away, and the US has closed the majority of its 400 Afghan bases. As the exit date nears day by day, however, the Pentagon is perusing its hefty arsenal of arms and attempting to identify the quickest and most cost-effective way to rid the region of the $17 billion or so worth of warheads that will soon no longer be needed.