The US Air Force was reportedly ordered to deploy B-52 bombers and Lockheed Martin C-130 Spectre gunships over Afghanistan in the fight against the Taliban terrorist movement that, enabled by US troops and NATO’s withdrawal, managed to seize two Afghan regional capitals in the last 48 hours, Arab News reports.
The US Stratofortress, as B-52’s are called, will cruise the Afghan airspace for the first time in over a year flying from Al-Udeid airbase in Qatar as Taliban make territorial gains across the war-torn country, and will strike their positions around Kandahar, Herat and Lashkar Gah.
Afghanistan’s 162 aircraft and helicopters are left mainly inoperable since US contractors left the country and the Afghan air force is also struggling due to the lack of munitions, supplies and pilots.
Biden administration has decided to engage as a support one of its key assets capable of massive destruction, still widely used due to their ability to carry 32 tonnes of ammunition, including nuclear armaments, at long distances as well as with armed drones and AC-130 Spectre gunships which can provide pinpoint accurate fire from the air.
According to the reports, Washington plans to continue with the airstrikes even after Aug. 31, when the last remaining coalition troops are expected to leave Afghanistan, supporting the missions with fast jets launched from the USS Ronald Reagan aircraft carrier in the Arabian Sea.