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Private contractors earned billions in Afghanistan war

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KABUL: The Wall Street Journal reported that private contractors made billions of dollars in 20 years of US war in Afghanistan. WSJ in a recent report on Friday called the US 20-year war in Afghanistan a “failure” and said that private contractors were the main winners, making huge sums of money over the past 20 years.

The Wall Street Journal reports that everyone from arms manufacturers to entrepreneurs has benefited from the war in Afghanistan and reaped huge benefits.

Two US National Guard soldiers from Ohio started a small business. Their job was to hire Afghan translators for the military. The two soldiers also became senior U.S. military contractors. The company has amassed nearly $ 4 billion in federal contracts, according to records.

Now, four months after the last US troops left Afghanistan, the United States is evaluating the lessons to be learned from this war. Some officials and watchdog groups have said that one of the issues to be learned is the relationship between reliance on battlefield contractors and rising war costs.

According to the report, the 9/11 attacks and the US-led invasion of Afghanistan, the signing of military contracts increased Pentagon spending by $14 trillion and created opportunities for this lucrative market as the war in Afghanistan and Iraq continued.

One-third to one-half of that money went to contractors and contractors, and five defense companies, according to findings from the Brown University War Costs Project, which a team of legal researchers and experts sought to draw attention to what they called the “hidden influence of the United States.” Like Lockheed Martin, Boeing, General Dynamics, Raytheon Technologies and Northrop Grumman have earned less than $ 2.1 trillion.

Current and former US officials have said that for the past two decades, both Republican and Democratic governments have seen the use of contractors as a way to keep troop numbers and military casualties low.

Christopher Miller, who became commander-in-chief in Afghanistan in 2005, said: “When fighting a completely voluntary army smaller than the previous ones, and without a draft, you have to leave a lot of work to the contractors to carry out their operations. . »

According to the report, the huge sums spent on war and reconstruction in Afghanistan after years of conflict have put pressure on the US government to review contracts and ensure that the money is spent as intended.

In 2008, the United States reportedly had 187,700 troops in Afghanistan and Iraq and 20,660 contractors, the peak of US deployment.

When former US President Barack Obama ordered more US troops to leave Afghanistan at the end of his second term, more than 26,000 contractors were present in Afghanistan, bringing the total to 9,800.

The Wall Street Journal reports that after Obama’s Donald Trump administration, 18,000 contractors and 2,500 troops remained in Afghanistan, which shortened over time until the United States withdrew completely from Afghanistan.

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