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During the insurgency, the Taliban often acquired its weapons on the black market, and eagerly sought out the American-supplied equipment. Now that the Taliban is in control, small shops are openly selling the weapons, while some savvy merchants are now smuggling the abandoned weapons into Pakistan, where the demand is very strong. Of course, it isn’t just the guns and military hardware that is now for sale. In local markets, everything from construction material to metal trays that were salvaged from former Afghan military bases is being offered for sale. Then there are the Humvees, armored personnel carriers, and at least one functioning Black Hawk helicopter offered for sale. It is likely that some of these weapons will find their way to militias as well as terrorist groups. Some may have ties to the Taliban, while others could use the caches of firearms and equipment in the potentially impending civil war. The biggest losers could end up being the artisans who had to copy western firearms. Now instead, there seems to be more than enough going around. Clearly, firearms sales aren’t just booming in America; in Afghanistan, it might be the only thing driving the local economy.

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