“Lincoln P. Bloomfield Jr., who was assistant secretary of state for political-military affairs when the ban was enacted in 2002, said the policy was intended to prevent American equipment from being used against American service members, especially during the Afghanistan and Iraq wars.

“‘Terrorist groups were using garage door openers to blow up U.S. troops; you kind of think twice about what you are exporting,’ said Mr. Bloomfield, who added that such dangers still exist today. ‘Who are you selling these silencers to?’ he said. ‘I sure hope that none of these are aimed at U.S. or allied forces…”

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