Monday, November 29, 2021

Remnants of the U.S. military are inspected by the Taliban at the Kabul airport.

Monday, November 29, 2021

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Shortly after the final C-17 transport plane left the airport in Kabul, Gen. Kenneth F. McKenzie Jr., head of the U.S. Central Command, addressed the media. He sought to quickly reassure the American public that, among other things, much of the U.S. military’s equipment that was left behind had been dismantled or destroyed so the Taliban could not use it.

Some of it, General McKenzie acknowledged, had been left at the airport. And on Tuesday, striking images emerged of Taliban fighters inspecting and securing some of the damaged equipment that remained, including dozens of military vehicles and armored S.U.V.s.

Photographs taken Tuesday showed Taliban members looking over remnants of a Blackhawk helicopter and an Afghan Air Force plane, both of which had been deliberately damaged by departing U.S. forces.

U.S. officials said last week that they had conducted a controlled detonation at Eagle Base, the final C.I.A. outpost outside the Kabul airport, to ensure that equipment or information left behind could not be used by the Taliban.

Photos by Victor J. Blue For The New York Times. Text by Thomas Gibbons-Neff, Julian E. Barnes, Farnaz Fassihi and Matt Stevens.

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