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The same thing happened at the end of WW2 with all the PT boats that has been shipped to the pacific. In the course of a war, a lot of equipment gets moved to the field. When war ends (particularly abruptly as was the case in Vietnam), it’s a cost benefit analysis as to whether it makes sense to ship it back. PT boats were burned and scuttled in WW2, helicopters were dumped in vietnam (not just in this case but in others to make room on the decks for people). I’m sure a lot of equipment was left in the field as well.



And more recently in Iraq and Afghanistan, billions of dollars of equipment, including thousands of Hummers and MRAPs were scrapped or donated to local allied security forces as the cost of shipping them back the United States was prohibitively costly. Embarrassingly, some of the equipment fell into the possession of the Islamic State when they conquered northern Iraq.


> in the field

You can still see an OV-10 (I think) and a handful of C-130s parked in a corner of the airport in Ho Chi Minh City:

https://goo.gl/maps/MbtvWxhn4as


After the Japanese surrender in WW2 the British Pacific Fleet dumped a load of lend-lease carrier aircraft over the side, although I believe in this case it was related to the terms that the US had imposed on their use.




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