May 22, 2006, By Thomas Harding, Defence Correspondent. American defence officials have secretly requested a "prodigious quantity" of ammunition from Russia to supply the Afghan army in case a Democrat president takes over in Washington and pulls out US troops. The Daily Telegraph can disclose that Pentagon chiefs have asked arms suppliers for a quote on a vast amount of ordnance, including more than 78 million rounds of AK47 ammunition, 100,000 rocket-propelled grenades and 12,000 tank shells - equivalent to about 15 times the British Army's annual requirements.
The Bush administration is said to want the deal because of worries that the next president could be a Democrat, possibly Hillary Clinton, who may abandon Afghanistan. White House insiders fear that Afghanistan could "drift" and consequently, they want heavily to arm President Hamid Kharzai's government before the 2008 US presidential election.
Defence specialists said Russian arms chiefs at first "fell about laughing" because they thought the order was a joke when it arrived this month.
I just found all this funny. We seem to be OK here in Central Texas; lots of 7.62 russian around.