Taliban Fighters In Kunduz, Afghanistan, Spotted Using SCARs and HMMWVs

The Taliban have been on the move recently, capturing an Afghanistan National Army District Headquarters in a recent battle. Footage of the battle show a High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicles (HMMWVs, or Humvees) and FN SCAR-Heavy rifle in use by the fighters, captured from earlier ANA forces during an earlier engagement. The footage is available in a video embedded below:

The SCAR-H is missing the adjustable cheekpiece from its famously fragile stock. It is clear that most of the fighters are using more traditional weapons, and the modern, captured arms and vehicles are mostly shown in propaganda shots. Taliban Twitter users also released some photos through social media of the rifle and HMMWV after they were captured:

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Nathaniel F

Nathaniel is a history enthusiast and firearms hobbyist whose primary interest lies in military small arms technological developments beginning with the smokeless powder era. In addition to contributing to The Firearm Blog, he runs 196,800 Revolutions Per Minute, a blog devoted to modern small arms design and theory. He is also the author of the original web serial Heartblood, which is being updated and edited regularly. He can be reached via email at nathaniel.f@staff.thefirearmblog.com.


  • CommonSense23

    Unless someone knows better, I doubt they got that Scar from the ANA. I don’t know of any of our forces that gave out PEQ 15s to the partner forces. PEQ 2s we handed out like candy.

    • Pike0331

      I saw Peq 15s with the ANA in 09, no Peq 2s, but by this time we all had PEQ 16s

      • CommonSense23

        Really, we didn’t give out nothing but 2s to ANASF when I was last there in 2012.

        • Pike0331

          Our ANA already had the Peq 15s when we arrived. Not everyone had them, only the guys that also had NVGS

          • CommonSense23

            Yeah, thats interesting. You know who was outfitting them before you arrived?

          • Pike0331

            Not sure, we pushed into Helmand, and they came from up North. They were equipped with M16s, early M4s, Para SAWS, and a Few SVDs and Pkms.

          • CommonSense23

            All we ever saw was M4s and 240s, with PEQ 2s and PVS 7s. And that was the ANASF. But we were down in the South East.

          • Pike0331

            Odd, your guys have any nvgs We had guys with PVS 7s

          • Dave

            If they came from up north then probably from all that funny business with the Company and the Northern Alliance, those were fun times.

  • Dan

    Yeah that’s definitely American SOF.

    • G0rdon_Fr33man

      So, what asshat dropped their rifle?

      • Dave

        Probably ANA SOF

        • CommonSense23

          Highly doubt it.

        • Pike0331

          Spot on. I saw some ANA guys with SCAR Ls in country and even a few with G36 rifles. They were bodyguards for a district governor/rep dude.

        • Patrick M.

          ANA with ELCAN specters and PEQ15s?

          • Dave

            Yep, they got given loads of high end gear by their yank trainers, just like ISOF and friends.

  • Matrix3692

    Is that an Elcan Specter DR I just saw……?

    • hking

      $2,000 Rifle
      $2,000 Optic
      $2,000 Light/Laser
      Our taxpayer dollars hard at work in the hands of the Taliban *sigh*

      • MR

        Dat A2 pistol grip, doe!

        • Joshua

          Don’t hate. I kept the A2 on my M4A1.

          • I like the A2. Really, I do!

          • MR

            Just seems to be the first thing people pick on, when they see a high dollar rig with a $2.95 retail grip on it. Plus it totally messes up my grip, but I guess we can blame that on my tiny hands.

          • jlkjlkjlkjdd

            A2 feels like ugly ass in the hand, bruh

      • BryanS

        Because something like that is so dangerous in the hands of a civilian. How wrong could Ronald Reagan be?

  • Bill

    They probably don’t have the infrastructure to support a lot of that stuff, unless they get it from Iran. Besides. look at that HMMV; multiple flat tires that aren’t supposed to go flat, missing headlights, etc. We spent a gazillion dollars on those things, while the war was “won” with Toyota and Nissan crew cab pickups.

    • against the lie

      Sure they get it from Iran- derp

    • lol

      that one shot where that guy is standing on the hood, you can see how torn up the engine is.

      this isn’t new equipment they can use, its trash the american forces left behind.

  • Pike0331

    Fun fact knowing what I know about Taliban marksmanship they will never unfold that butt stock.

    • It’s unfolded in the video…

      • Pike0331

        it was a joke…..

    • The Forty ‘Twa

      Having been shot at by them (and having had colleagues killed by their shooting) I wouldn’t be so quick to write off their marksmanship.

      • Pike0331

        I fought them in 09, I couldn’t count how many times they’d ambush us in the middle of an open field and never hit a single one of us. A lot them died with empty AKs in their hands.

      • whskee

        Blind fire can kill as well as aimed fire. It’s easy to want to under-estimate them but they do intend to kill us and need to be treated as such. In my experience most don’t use the sights of whatever weapons they can get. They usually like to say it’s Allah’s will and just point shoot.

    • jlkjlkjlkjdd

      Having a scope can REALLY change how a person shoots compared to iron sights. Even if they didn’t aim before, having an actual crosshair, that may be illuminated(and graduated for distance), should be expected to really increase their hit ratios(especially considering magnification).

      People love to shrug off optics and say “without fundamentals it won’t matter,” but the reality is that every single military had to raise their “expert marksman” or equivalent qualifications when they standardized red dots(Sweden) or magnified optics(USA).


    The ANA is a joke. The trainning wheel will never come off. Watch it fold like the Iraqi army as soon as the last american plane take off.

    • SP mclaughlin

      Folded over like a turd in the churn, as my uncle would say.


        More like flushing billions down the drain, trillions if you count the no bid contracts for the “reconstruction” projects that didn’t reconstruct anything, and the curruption, bribery money that dissappered into off shore swiss bank accounts. I wonder what that tax money could be use for here in the US.

        • against the lie

          That’s nothing compared to the hundreds of billions that Uncle Sam “gives” to Israhell

          • MAUSERMAN

            i am all for leaving them to lop each others head off.

          • All the Raindrops

            Israeli aid is virtually nothing compared to what we’ve spent in Afghanistan and Iraq (and a lot of other places)

          • against the lie

            Yeah-what’s a few hundred billion to Israel- right?

        • DataMatters

          I don’t think you understand how Keynesian economics works. It’s sort of like an electrical circuit that is designed to drain down the batteries so that we have to always be buying more batteries.

          • MAUSERMAN

            i don’t think you understand either, except i don’t pretend to understand.

          • DataMatters

            What’s there to understand? The whole point of the exercise was exactly what you stated, not the high-minded talk of disarming Saddam or however the hell it was sold to a gullible public. It was always about burning up as many billions as possible in whatever imaginative ways possible. Money is debt, and debt has to keep growing.

          • MAUSERMAN

            Its never that simple, but the result is the same in the end. I am just really not looking forward to the final cost. Maybe more than a few trillions, instead of billions.

    • What else would you expect? America is only an ocean away and peddles an ideology that only Westerners believe in.


        Yup agree. You can’t force democracy on people who prefer tribal theocracy.

        • Zugunder

          Like it is any worse…

        • It’s the tribal theocrats in a democracy you really need to keep an eye on.

        • jlkjlkjlkjdd

          >implying that Western puppet regime = democracy

  • TheNotoriousIUD

    That thousand dollar scope is really going to help when hip firing with the stock folded.
    On the upside at least the plates are still on so Obama can call the cops.

  • “Dammit Achmed, don’t scuff our only SCAR or you’re on permanent latrine duty!”

  • ryanwazhere

    And for what freaken reason do they need a PEQ for? We supplying them night vision too?

  • BryanS

    So much better to leave them over there, instead of bring them home and letting the people who paid for them in the first place have a chance at buying them (again).

    Because that would violate some illegal law, or the children. Or some other BS.

    • USMC03Vet

      Everyone else can have guns, but Americans

      – Obama foreign policy

      • Thank you for your service Marine. Barry doesn’t have any foreign policy. Barry to Reggie: Enter softly, and carry a big stick.

      • jlkjlkjlkjdd

        Because there’s totally gun shops in every city in Afghanistan. HUR DUR HUR.

  • Axel

    For those of you saying that Iran is giving support to the Taliban, I hope you realize that the Talib are Sunni and consider Shia to be not Muslim (and therefore infidels). Most of their revenue comes from locals, agriculture, drugs, arms trafficking, Pakistan, and Sunni extremist sympathizers.

    • Rock or Something

      Although Iran and the Taliban are by no means friends (and actually almost went to “war” when the Taliban executed some Iranian diplomats before 9/11), Iran does have an interest in “stirring the pot” while NATO is in Afghanistan. So they will at times turn a blind eye to certain Taliban figures traveling or residing in Iran and tolerate money and supplies trafficking, under the agreement the Taliban don’t F around in Iran. It’s the same way with Al Qaeda, to a certain extent. We were getting some intel reports of some key financiers residing and running operations in Iran. Iran didn’t seem to care, as long as the destination for all their money went to their groups in Afghanistan.

      But most of the funding from the Taliban does come from illicit revenue, shadow governance taxation, and various Pakistan sources.

      • TheNotoriousIUD

        Kinda like the way the Saudis fund terror groups as long as they stay out of the kingdom.

  • Ed

    hate to say with ANA and possible that some US SOCOM units could have been overrun with US forces being with drawn from Afghanistan by Obama. So there weapons would fall to Taliban and ISIS forces.

    • CommonSense23

      If a SOCOM unit got overrun you would have heard about it. Its not like Afghanistan is a undeclared conflict.

      • Joshua

        Wouldn’t be the first time we lost gear when someone gets seriously injured.

        Goat humpers go straight for the weapons of they can get a chance.

        Granted it’s rare, but I’ve seen them risk life and limb to grab a M4A1 off a wounded or deceased soldier. I’ve even seen them grab it, toss it away for someone else only to meet the man in black himself seconds after.

  • Bill

    Stuff does get lost in combat, one SCAR does not an Obama conspiracy make. With one magazine, an iffy supply of 7.62 and having to scrounge for batteries, whoever gets it will want their AK back pretty quick.

    • John

      Trouble is, the Islamic State in Libya has been shipping arms all over, including FALs and 7.62×51 ammo. If the Taliban can get a supply line going, that gun will definitely be fed.

    • jlkjlkjlkjdd

      thanks obama!

  • tony

    That scope alone is worth more than my car

    • jlkjlkjlkjdd

      get a better car

  • BBKC

    Looks more like something left behind and found by the people pictured in this article. Can anyone tell where that front license plate is from? Why wouldn’t it be in Arabic if it’s truly theirs?

  • Obtained the same way they picked up Russian AA canons and AK47s. I’m sure someone in Pajammabad is eating with a knife dropped by some of Alexander The Great’s troops. Be glad they can’t fly all those helos sitting idle that the Afghan govt bought from Russia & sooner or later they will be smoking hash taking pics in them too.