The Obama Administration’s plan for Afghanistan has long rested on the idea of some sort of negotiated settlement with some portion of the Taliban, bringing them into the fold for the Afghan government as a way to reduce the insurgency’s scope. But progress hasn’t exactly been easy going, with the Taliban abandoning the talks earlier this year after a US soldier massacred civilians, and only grudgingly returning later.
Now it is the US that’s giving up on the talks, saying that they don’t think they are going to be able to negotiate with the Taliban any time soon and don’t see anything on the horizon until after 2014, when many of the NATO member nations will have left. The US has a deal to remain through at least 2024.
“I don’t see it happening in the next couple years,” one official said, adding “it will be a constant battle, and it will be for years.” Instead of peace efforts, the US will instead focus again on military efforts, which haven’t exactly worked well in the last 11 years of occupation either.
Attempts to court the Taliban have run the gamut from unsuccessful to downright embarrassing, in one case an impostor “senior Taliban” leader bilked NATO out of a large amount of money before disappearing without a trace.
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