Taliban and AQ Reportedly Acquiring US/German Small Arms

#1
Given the proven robustness and adequate lethality of the venerable and ubiquitous AK47 and associated weapons, I am puzzled why the Taliban/AQ would now want "sophisticated" firearms.


Taliban, al-Qaeda sling US, German guns

Sat, 31 Oct 2009 19:35:18 GMT


Pro-Taliban and al-Qaeda-linked militants have reportedly been outfitted with state-of-the-art American arms and other weaponry made in the US-allied states, including Israel, Germany and India.

The pro-Taliban militants in Pakistan were equipped with expensive and expertly-crafted firearms made by the German arms manufacturer Blazer, Deutsche Welle reported on Wednesday.

The rifles are priced at USD 2,960 (EUR 2,000) a piece and are characterized with heavy-duty outer parts and 'lifelong' durability. The weapons are well suited for operational purposes in mountainous areas such as the tribal Pakistani region of South Waziristan, which borders Afghanistan.

The northwestern militant-infested area has for long troubled the Pakistani military. Islamabad is currently engaged in full-scale military operations against the gunmen.

The German broadcaster named the other armaments in militant possession as the German-made "Walther P1 handguns, automatic weapons made by another German defense manufacturer Heckler & Koch (H&K), handguns build at the Austrian weapon producer the Glock, the American M249 machine guns and the Israeli-made Uzi submachine guns." Some of the weapons are worth USD 2,072 (EUR 1,400).

The report added that militant gangs were training with German G3 assault rifles. The latest version of the gun is valued for its durability and pinpoint precision.

Questions remain as to how the al-Qaeda-linked terrorists acquired the weapons.

Heckler & Koch (H&K) is rated as one of the defense industry's 'Big Five' and a mainstay trading partner to the German military. Last year, the company, the volume of whose exports are yet to be specified, sold USD 267 million ( EUR 181 million) worth of weapons.

The company as well produces weapons for the United Kingdom, Norway and Greece and has been contracted to equip the French army. The company has survived the global economic crisis almost unharmed.

Every 14 minutes a person reportedly dies by a H&K-made weapon.
http://www.presstv.ir/detail.aspx?id=110117&sectionid=351020401
 
#2
Tch. Yet another user deciding not to use the SA80...

On a more serious note, this does raise interesting questions, particularly: where is the money coming from and who is organising the purchase and movement of the weapons?
 
#7
countymounty said:
How much has Broon&co supplied in Foreign aid that's now being returned in a very nasty way?
I have little doubt that a lot of US dollars are also included in same "aid."
 
#8
jumpinjarhead said:
countymounty said:
How much has Broon&co supplied in Foreign aid that's now being returned in a very nasty way?
I have little doubt that a lot of US dollars are also included in same "aid."
AND I have little doubt that quite a few pounds, roubles and euros are going the same way,I wish I could remember the Chinese currency name.
 
#9
countymounty said:
jumpinjarhead said:
countymounty said:
How much has Broon&co supplied in Foreign aid that's now being returned in a very nasty way?
I have little doubt that a lot of US dollars are also included in same "aid."
AND I have little doubt that quite a few pounds, roubles and euros are going the same way,I wish I could remember the Chinese currency name.
You had better learn it given that the ChiComs hold most of the debt of the US--it is the "yuan." :D
 
#10
jumpinjarhead said:
countymounty said:
jumpinjarhead said:
countymounty said:
How much has Broon&co supplied in Foreign aid that's now being returned in a very nasty way?
I have little doubt that a lot of US dollars are also included in same "aid."
AND I have little doubt that quite a few pounds, roubles and euros are going the same way,I wish I could remember the Chinese currency name.
You had better learn it given that the ChiComs hold most of the debt of the US--it is the "yuan." :D
Dead on, ta for remindin'me,in this part off the world it normally means yuanme,yuanhim,yuanher etc. nothing to do with money.
 
#11
...and I wouldn't mind betting the odd Riyal is finding it's way into the pot.It is not really much of a surprise,money has never been a problem for Terry or the AQ boys,I am desperately trying to encourage my Grandson to learn Mandarin so that at least when they put me up against the wall,he can pay for the bullet then disown me!
 
#12
kangorrilapig said:
...and I wouldn't mind betting the odd Riyal is finding it's way into the pot.It is not really much of a surprise,money has never been a problem for Terry or the AQ boys,I am desperately trying to encourage my Grandson to learn Mandarin so that at least when they put me up against the wall,he can pay for the bullet then disown me!
Now take heart, after all, according to many pundits and members of the current administration, we have nothing to fear from our friends the Chinese. They really are just like "us" and share the same respect for human rights so we have nothing to worry about. After all, we are told that that spot of bother at that large square in Peking, oops, I mean Beijing, never happened and instead our attention is directed to how impressive all that mechanized humanity was at the last Olympic Games.
 
#13
kangorrilapig said:
...and I wouldn't mind betting the odd Riyal is finding it's way into the pot.It is not really much of a surprise,money has never been a problem for Terry or the AQ boys,I am desperately trying to encourage my Grandson to learn Mandarin so that at least when they put me up against the wall,he can pay for the bullet then disown me!
Try going to your local take away and instead of asking for No1 or 40 learn to ask for it in Mandarin, you'll soon catch on.
 
#14
Jumpin,I think you having problems with your memory. What large square? When did this take place? No large squares in China town,HONEST! Cappalist lackey!
 
#15
countymounty said:
Jumpin,I think you having problems with your memory. What large square? When did this take place? No large squares in China town,HONEST! Cappalist lackey!
I know I will be at the head of the line for re-education when they repossess America after calling in all their loans. I was never a very good student so I will likely end up kneeling compliantly for the bullet I will have been made to purchase. :?
 
#17
jumpinjarhead said:
countymounty said:
Jumpin,I think you having problems with your memory. What large square? When did this take place? No large squares in China town,HONEST! Cappalist lackey!
I know I will be at the head of the line for re-education when they repossess America after calling in all their loans. I was never a very good student so I will likely end up kneeling compliantly for the bullet I will have been made to purchase. :?
AH SO!CAPPILIST LACKEY!! NOT SO!! WE HAVE MUCH MORE WAYS TO INFLICT REEDUCATION UPON YOU!!!! You will eat number 12 and 41 with boiled lice for 5 years!! If still no reeducated we will inflict TONY or GORDON upon you!!
 
#18
JoeCivvie said:
I think most of Terry's dosh comes from flogging poppy sap to make heroin.
It's as usual a mistake to generalize about different groups:
...
The most important group is the Quetta Shura Taliban (QST), whose power centres on Kandahar and its approaches. The second main group is the Haqqani network (HQN), active in the south-east of the country; and the third is Hizb-i-Islami Gulbuddin (HIG), led by the former mujahedin Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, which maintains bases in three Afghan provinces. Each has a different source of funding (narcotics, smuggling, foreign financial support, and so on).
...
But poppy is generally less significant than you'd think, see Who is funding the Afghan Taliban? You don’t want to know
...
Now administration officials have launched a search for Taliban sponsors. Richard Holbrooke, U.S. special envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan, told a press conference in Islamabad last month that drugs accounted for less of a share of Taliban coffers than was previously thought.

“In the past there was a kind of feeling that the money all came from drugs in Afghanistan,” said Holbrooke, according to media reports. “That is simply not true.”

The new feeling is that less than half of the Taliban’s war chest comes from poppy, with a variety of sources, including private contributions from Persian Gulf states, accounting for much of the rest. Holbrooke told reporters that he would add a member of the Treasury Department to his staff to pursue the question of Taliban funding.

But perhaps U.S. officials need look no further than their own backyard.

Anecdotal evidence is mounting that the Taliban are taking a hefty portion of assistance money coming into Afghanistan from the outside.

This goes beyond mere protection money or extortion of “taxes” at the local level — very high-level negotiations take place between the Taliban and major contractors, according to sources close to the process.

A shadowy office in Kabul houses the Taliban contracts officer, who examines proposals and negotiates with organizational hierarchies for a percentage. He will not speak to, or even meet with, a journalist, but sources who have spoken with him and who have seen documents say that the process is quite professional.

The manager of an Afghan firm with lucrative construction contracts with the U.S. government builds in a minimum of 20 percent for the Taliban in his cost estimates. The manager, who will not speak openly, has told friends privately that he makes in the neighborhood of $1 million per month. Out of this, $200,000 is siphoned off for the insurgents.

If negotiations fall through, the project will come to harm — road workers may be attacked or killed, bridges may be blown up, engineers may be assassinated.

The degree of cooperation and coordination between the Taliban and aid workers is surprising, and would most likely make funders extremely uncomfortable.

One Afghan contractor, speaking privately, told friends of one project he was overseeing in the volatile south. The province cannot be mentioned, nor the particular project.

“I was building a bridge,” he said, one evening over drinks. “The local Taliban commander called and said ‘don’t build a bridge there, we’ll have to blow it up.’ I asked him to let me finish the bridge, collect the money — then they could blow it up whenever they wanted. We agreed, and I completed my project.”

In the south, no contract can be implemented without the Taliban taking a cut, sometimes at various steps along the way.

One contractor in the southern province of Helmand was negotiating with a local supplier for a large shipment of pipes. The pipes had to be brought in from Pakistan, so the supplier tacked on about 30 percent extra for the Taliban, to ensure that the pipes reached Lashkar Gah safely.

Once the pipes were given over to the contractor, he had to negotiate with the Taliban again to get the pipes out to the project site. This was added to the transportation costs.

“We assume that our people are paying off the Taliban,” said the foreign contractor in charge of the project.

In Farah province, local officials report that the Taliban are taking up to 40 percent of the money coming in for the National Solidarity Program, one of the country’s most successful community reconstruction projects, which has dispensed hundreds of millions of dollars throughout the country over the past six years.

Many Afghans see little wrong in the militants getting their fair share of foreign assistance.

“This is international money,” said one young Kabul resident. “They are not taking it from the people, they are taking it from their enemy.”

But in areas under Taliban control, the insurgents are extorting funds from the people as well.

In war-ravaged Helmand, where much of the province has been under Taliban control for the past two years, residents grumble about the tariffs.

“It’s a disaster,” said a 50-year-old resident of Marja district. “We have to give them two kilos of poppy paste per jerib during the harvest; then we have to give them ushr (an Islamic tax, amounting to one-tenth of the harvest) from our wheat. Then they insisted on zakat (an Islamic tithe). Now they have come up with something else: 12,000 Pakistani rupee (approximately $150) per household. And they won’t take even one rupee less.”

It all adds up, of course. But all things are relative: if the Taliban are able to raise and spend say $1 billion per year — the outside limit of what anyone has been able to predict — that accounts for what the United States is now spending on 10 days of the war to defeat them.
Sounds rather like PIRA's bank: hospital reconstruction scams.

When the Muhj fought the Red Army The House Of Saud matched DC dollar for dollar. The funds went via bag men like Bin Laden to the ISI and onto their goons, Gulbuddin Hekmatyar being a favored recipient. Unfortunately you can bet things are not so different now.

The "private contributions from Persian Gulf states" are overwhelmingly Saudi. It's nearly as traditional as funding the ideological source of Pashtun Puritanism the Deobandi schools and ranting about Joos. One would hope only a small cut of this is "commissions" off pork fueled arms deals paid by US by military aid and is mostly honest profits off the Ghawar field. It's ironic as protecting that's our only good reason for being in the Persian Gulf.


I doubt the proportions are the same as back in the time of the Soviet war but it's a safe bet some of the skim off the billions DC has directed towards the Pak military finds it's way to their Terry chums in Quetta and the Haqqani network that Charlie Wilson was so fond of. It may even be keeping Osama's cave heated.

How much we'll never know as neither the Pentagon nor the Pak Military is clear on where most of the money is. Let's hope Mr 10% is spending it all on Johnny Walker.
Billions in U.S. Aid Never Reached Pakistan Army
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan — The United States has long suspected that much of the billions of dollars it has sent Pakistan to battle militants has been diverted to the domestic economy and other causes, such as fighting India.

Now the scope and longevity of the misuse is becoming clear: Between 2002 and 2008, while Al Qaeda regrouped, only $500 million of the $6.6 billion in American aid actually made it to the Pakistani military, two army generals tell The Associated Press.

The account of the generals, who asked to remain anonymous because military rules forbid them from speaking publicly, was backed up by other retired and active generals, former bureaucrats and government ministers.

At the time of the siphoning, Pervez Musharraf, a Washington ally, served as both chief of staff and president, making it easier to divert money intended for the military to bolster his sagging image at home through economic subsidies.

"The army itself got very little," said retired Gen. Mahmud Durrani, who was Pakistan's ambassador to the U.S. under Musharraf. "It went to things like subsidies, which is why everything looked hunky-dory. The military was financing the war on terror out of its own budget.

Generals and ministers say the diversion of the money hurt the military in very real ways:

—Helicopters critical to the battle in rugged border regions were not available. At one point in 2007, more than 200 soldiers were trapped by insurgents in the tribal regions without a helicopter lift to rescue them.

—The limited night vision equipment given to the army was taken away every three months for inventory and returned three weeks later.

—Equipment was broken, and training was lacking. It was not until 2007 that money was given to the Frontier Corps, the front-line force, for training.

The details on misuse of American aid come as Washington again promises Pakistan money. Legislation to triple general aid to Pakistan cleared Congress last week. The legislation also authorizes "such sums as are necessary" for military assistance to Pakistan, upon several conditions. The conditions include certification that Pakistan is cooperating in stopping the proliferation of nuclear weapons, that Pakistan is making a sustained commitment to combating terrorist groups and that Pakistan security forces are not subverting the country's political or judicial processes.

The U.S. is also insisting on more accountability for reimbursing money spent. For example, Pakistan is still waiting for $1.7 billion for which it has billed the United States under a Coalition Support Fund to reimburse allies for money spent on the war on terror.

But the U.S. still can't follow what happens to the money it doles out.

"We don't have a mechanism for tracking the money after we have given it to them," Pentagon spokesman Lt. Col. Mark Wright said in a telephone interview.

Musharraf's spokesman, retired Gen. Rashid Quereshi, flatly denied that his former boss had shortchanged the army. He did not address the specific charges. "He has answered these questions. He has answered all the questions," the spokesman said. Musharraf took power in a bloodless coup in 1999 and resigned in August 2008.

The misuse of funding helps to explain how al-Qaida, dismantled in Afghanistan in 2001, was able to regroup, grow and take on the weak Pakistani army. Even today, the army complains of inadequate equipment to battle Taliban entrenched in tribal regions.

For its part, Washington did not ask many questions of a leader, Musharraf, whom it considered an ally, according to a U.S. Government Accountability Office report released last year.

Pakistan has received more money from the fund than any other nation. It is also the least expensive war front. The amount the U.S. spends per soldier per month is just $928, compared with $76,870 in Afghanistan and $85,640 in Iraq.

Yet by 2008, the United States had provided Pakistan with $8.6 billion in military money, and more than $12 billion in all.

"The army was sending in the bills," said one general who asked not to be identified because it is against military rules to speak publicly. "The army was taking from its coffers to pay for the war effort — the access roads construction, the fuel, everything. ... This is the reality — the army got peanuts."

Some of the money from the U.S. even went to buying weapons from the United States better suited to fighting India than in the border regions of Afghanistan — armor-piercing tow missiles, sophisticated surveillance equipment, air-to-air missiles, maritime patrol aircraft, anti-ship missiles and F-16 fighter aircraft.

"Pakistan insisted and America agreed. Pakistan said we also have a threat from other sources," Durrani said, referring to India, "and we have to strengthen our overall capacity. "The money was used to buy and support capability against India."

The army also suffered from mismanagement, Durrani said. As an example, he cited Pakistani attempts to buy badly needed attack helicopters.

Pakistan asked for Cobra helicopters because it knows how to maintain them, he said. But the helicopters were old, and to make them battle-ready, the Pentagon sent them to a company that had no experience with Cobras and took two years, he said.

As a result, in 2007, Pakistan had only one working helicopter — a debilitating handicap in the battle against insurgents who hide, train and attack from the hulking mountains that run like a seam along the Afghan-Pakistani border.

The army was also frustrated about not getting more money. Military spokesman Gen. Athar Abbas said the U.S. gave nothing to offset the cost of Pakistan's dead and wounded in the war on terror. He estimated 1,800 Pakistani soldiers had been killed since 2003 and 4,800 more wounded, most of them seriously.

The hospital and rehabilitation costs for the wounded have come to more than $25 million, Abbas said. Pakistan's military also gives land to the widows of the dead, educates their children and provides health care.

"These costs do not appear anywhere," he said. "There is no U.S. compensation for the casualties, assistance with aid to the grieving families."

Even while money was being siphoned off for other purposes on Pakistan's end, the U.S. imposed little control over or even had specific knowledge of what went where, according to reports by the U.S. Government Accountability Office. The reports covered 2002 through 2008.

The reports found that the Pentagon often ignored its own oversight rules, didn't get adequate documents and doled out money without asking for an explanation.

For more than a year, the Pentagon paid Pakistan's navy $19,000 a month per vehicle just for repair costs on a fleet of fewer than 20 vehicles. Monthly food bills doubled for no apparent reason, and for a year the Pentagon paid the bills without checking, according to the report.

Daniyal Aziz, a minister in Musharraf's government, said he warned U.S. officials that the money they were giving his government was being misused, but to no avail.

"They both deserved each other, Musharraf and the Americans," he said.
 
#19
JoeCivvie said:
I think most of Terry's dosh comes from flogging poppy sap to make heroin.

Nope… most of their money is in the form of 'charitable donations' from the Middle East, mostly Saudi Arabia.
 
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