U.S. Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) today introduced legislation to require the director of national intelligence to report to Congress any time it is determined that U.S. military equipment that was abandoned in Afghanistan, Iraq, or Syria is used in a terrorist attack against the United States or its allies or used in nearby regions.
“Americans were rightfully shocked to see Taliban fighters celebrating the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Afghanistan atop military equipment funded by U.S. taxpayers,” said Thune. “While there was a significant effort to destroy a portion of the military equipment left behind in the chaotic withdrawal from Kabul, the rapid fall of Afghanistan to the Taliban resulted in insurgents scoring an untold cache of weapons and other equipment. It’s especially insulting to think that this very equipment, issued to provide security and stability, could now be used for evil acts of violence. As the nation seeks answers for the botched withdrawal from Afghanistan, this bill would provide important accountability for the equipment left behind and, most importantly, it would provide information to underscore the unacceptable risk of inadvertently arming terrorists by abandoning military equipment.”
This legislation is co-sponsored by U.S. Sens. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), Mike Braun (R-Ind.), Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Steve Daines (R-Mont.), Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), John Hoeven (R-N.D.), Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.), and Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska).
Thune’s bill would require notification of any known details relating to the equipment used in the attack; the date on which, and the location from which, the equipment left U.S. custody; attribution for the orchestrators of the attack; and the total number of deaths and casualties caused by the attack.