Besides the enormous funds at the disposal of the Pentagon, huge amounts are being transferred to the accounts of foreign armies that fight the terrorist threat across the globe. This makes it even more tragic that despite the large bill (nearly $100 billion), Al-Qaeda, the Taliban threat and ISIS are not even remotely suppressed and are still wreaking havoc in Syria, Afghanistan, Iraq and many other regions of the world.
After 9/11, the U.S. started a program which aimed at funding foreign armies that will fight the terrorist threat present is “in their backyard”. President Obama continued this foreign policy and we can say that, now, it has become a crucial component in America’s plan to put a stop to terrorism worldwide. The only alternative would be to send more American forces to war-ridden areas, but this was an option the Presidential Office wanted to evade.
However, to spend nearly $100 billion on training and equipping foreign fighters across North Africa, South Asia and the Middle East seems a bit over the top, don’t you think?
One might think that it’s for a good cause and it’s showing results. Well, yes, it is for a good cause but this practice has been facing one setback after another. One major defeat was the loss of Kunduz, Afghanistan’s 5th largest city, to the Taliban. The fight for control over the city isn’t over yet, so there is still hope. This was the first real test for the American-trained forces in Afghanistan, and they have failed it miserably. On the other hand, the ones in Iraq and Syria were no real match for ISIS whatsoever. The ISIS threat is far from being eliminated, and now, with Russia involved is seems America has taken the back seat and is just there for the ride.
That this strategy of fighting the terrorist threat proved to be unsuccessful can be heard even among military personnel:
“Our track record at forming foreign armed forces over the past 15 years is miserable,” said a former military officer and U.S. ambassador in Afghanistan, Karl W. Eikenberry.
According to Vocativ’s assessment of the information provided by Special Inspector General for Afghanistan and Iraq Reconstruction, the Department of Defense, and the Government Accountability Office, here is how the funds are allocated:
1. Afghanistan ($65,000,000,000) – America provides funds for Afghanistan’s armed forces, police and local militias in their fight against the Taliban and Al-Qaeda. However, one major defeat was the loss of Kunduz.
2. Iraq ($25,000,000,000) – The U.S. provides funds for national and local armed forces in their fight against ISIS. One major setback was Iraqi forces retrieving from Mosul in the face of an ISIS attack.
3. Somalia ($1,000,000,000) – America gives financial aid to the African Union forces in their fight against Al-Shabaab, however, the terrorist group is still numerous and wreaking havoc in Somalia.
4. Mali & Northwest Africa ($600,000,000) – The national and local military are being funded by America, and they face Al-Qaeda and other Islamic militant groups. Even so, coups are constant and the region is far from being stable.
5. Syria ($500,000,000) – America aids “moderate rebel groups”, whoever that might be considering the number of many different parties involved in the Syrian war. They oppose Assad’s regime and ISIS, but truth be told – they are no match for either one of them. Some soldiers equipped with American weapons were even kidnapped by ISIS and had their weapons confiscated, thus making ISIS even more dangerous.
6. Yemen ($500,000,000) – The U.S. government gives financial aid to national and local armed forces who oppose the Al-Qaeda threat at the Arabian Peninsula. However, the fact that the conflict escalated into a civil war, with Al-Qaeda cementing its position, tells how unsuccessful this campaign was.
- Grand Total = $92,500,000,000