Jump to content
BANGKOK
rooster59

Trump gets update from aides on Afghan peace plan with troop pullout possible

Recommended Posts

Trump gets update from aides on Afghan peace plan with troop pullout possible

By Steve Holland and Jonathan Landay

 

2019-08-16T151904Z_1_LYNXNPEF7F19R_RTROPTP_4_USA-TRUMP.JPG

U.S. President Donald Trump speaks to reporters before boarding Air Force One at Morristown Municipal Airport in Morristown, New Jersey U.S. August 15, 2019. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

 

BRIDGEWATER, N.J./WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Donald Trump was briefed on Friday by top national security advisers on the status of negotiations with the Taliban on a U.S. troop pullout from Afghanistan and the potential for a political settlement between the warring sides.

 

There was no indication that any conclusions were reached at the session, which took place in a secure conference room at Trump's golf club in Bedminster, New Jersey.

 

"Just completed a very good meeting on Afghanistan. Many on the opposite side of this 19 year war, and us, are looking to make a deal - if possible!" Trump said in a tweet after the session.

 

Trump, who has repeatedly questioned the billions of dollars spent in wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, has made no secret of his desire for a U.S. pullout from Afghanistan after 19 years of war triggered by the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

 

But there are deep concerns among national security aides about negotiations led by U.S. special representative to Afghanistan, Zalmay Khalilzad, who updated Trump and others on the status of the talks.

 

A pullout has raised fears within the U.S. military and among some lawmakers that Afghanistan could plunge into a new civil war that could see a return of Taliban rule and give al Qaeda and other militants a sanctuary in which to expand and plot new attacks on U.S. and allied targets.

 

A U.S. defence official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said significant differences remained between the United States and the Taliban after an eighth round of talks ended in Qatar on Monday.

 

Some 14,000 U.S. troops remain engaged in America's longest war, training and advising Afghan security forces and conducting counterinsurgency operations against militant groups such as al Qaeda and Islamic State's local affiliate.

 

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a statement issued after the meeting that the United States remains committed "achieving a comprehensive peace agreement, including a reduction in violence and a ceasefire" in Afghanistan.

 

Trump and Pompeo were joined for the talks by Vice President Mike Pence, national security adviser John Bolton, Defense Secretary Mike Esper, Joint Chiefs chairman General Joseph Dunford and CIA Director Gina Haspel.

 

"The meeting went very well, and negotiations are proceeding," the White House said in a statement.

 

The U.S. military presence dates to 2001 when then-President George W. Bush invaded in pursuit of al Qaeda and ousted the Taliban rulers who had given Osama bin Laden and his followers a safe haven in which they plotted the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

 

U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham, a Trump ally, said any deal should allow the United States to maintain a military presence in Afghanistan to pursue such groups.

 

"Any peace agreement which denies the U.S. a robust counter-terrorism capability in Afghanistan is not a peace deal," he said in a statement. "Instead, it is paving the way for another attack on the American homeland and attacks against American interests around the world."

 

A senior administration official said a decision was not necessarily expected from the Bedminster meeting, but Trump "has been pretty clear that he wants to bring the troops home."

 

Both sides had raised expectations of being close to finalising an agreement prior to convening the latest round of talks.

 

The U.S. defence official, however, said differences remained over U.S. demands that the insurgents publicly renounce ties to al Qaeda and other militant groups and agree to a nationwide ceasefire, the official said.

 

Khalilzad also is seeking the Taliban's agreement to hold direct negotiations on a political settlement with Kabul government officials who would be part of a delegation that included opposition leaders and civil society representatives.

 

Taliban leaders to date have refused to hold official talks with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani's government, which they denounce as a U.S. puppet.

 

(Reporting by Steve Holland and Jonathan Landay; Additional reporting by Idress Ali; Editing by Leslie Adler and Diane Craft)

 

reuters_logo.jpg

-- © Copyright Reuters 2019-08-17
  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It’s going to be messy no matter who is president 

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The US should just get the eff out of Afghanistan.  They have the examples, in history, of the British and the Russians, of outsiders who could never control that rat-hole of a country.

 

I stand to be corrected, but I don't think there has been a foreign terrorist attack on the US mainland since 9/11.  So it looks like American intelligence agencies are doing a good job of keeping the bad guys out. If that is the case, it eliminates the need to keep the flag flying in Afghanistan. Let the drones keep an eye on the ISIS and Al Quaeda mobs...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Big worry is Taliban's vague guarantee regarding women's rights, along lines of "in line with Afghan traditions and Islamic law"... beating women who step outside of homes, ending education for women, ridding workplace of women, etc etc

Anyone think Trump gives a darn about women's rights?

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think it's only fair that since the US armed and trained the Taliban in the first place, the Taliban should allow them to surrender gracefully

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
35 minutes ago, blazes said:

I stand to be corrected, but I don't think there has been a foreign terrorist attack on the US mainland since 9/11.

Why would they bother? The home grown terrorists are doing a much better job than they could ever do

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So the US tax payer not only had to pay for Trump to go to his golf course but also had to pay for numerous aides to go too. Did they get discount rates on food and accommodation? 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Emdog said:

Big worry is Taliban's vague guarantee regarding women's rights

Worries unrelated to any U.S. peace negotiations.

Regarding any peace agreement between the U.S. and Taliban (it's unclear whether the current elected Afghanistan government has any say in the matter of peace talks), the big issue is that Trump requires no backstops or verification to verbal promises from the Taliban that it will cease all terrorist actions and will fight any terrorist attacks such as from Al Qaeda. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I hope the ‘briefing’ was with lots of pictures and little to no writing. Otherwise it would be a waste of time. Probably would be no matter what, as he thinks he knows better than everyone anyway.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, grumbleweed said:

I think it's only fair that since the US armed and trained the Taliban in the first place, the Taliban should allow them to surrender gracefully

The Russians withdrew from Afghanistan 88/89, when did the Taliban form?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Emdog said:

Big worry is Taliban's vague guarantee regarding women's rights, along lines of "in line with Afghan traditions and Islamic law"... beating women who step outside of homes, ending education for women, ridding workplace of women, etc etc

Anyone think Trump gives a darn about women's rights?

That is an issue. But, it was one of our own making. The US created the Taliban. We trained them, as the Mujaheedin, and equipped them. Now we deal with them. And in the case of Afghanistan, they have kicked our butts. Time to walk away, label it another Vietnam type fiasco, and simply admit we cannot win a war. If the Taliban beats us, who could we beat? Iran? Maybe not. We have not won a war of any significance since 1945. In the case of the US, all of it's glory is in the rear view.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, spidermike007 said:

That is an issue. But, it was one of our own making. The US created the Taliban. We trained them, as the Mujaheedin, and equipped them. Now we deal with them. And in the case of Afghanistan, they have kicked our butts. Time to walk away, label it another Vietnam type fiasco, and simply admit we cannot win a war. If the Taliban beats us, who could we beat? Iran? Maybe not. We have not won a war of any significance since 1945. In the case of the US, all of it's glory is in the rear view.

 

More like the concept of war changed, while some people's expectations remain the same.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...