The United States and the Taliban came to a historic agreement for peace in Afghanistan on Saturday, February 29, 2020. The main objective seems to be scaling back America’s longest conflict. The United States and the Taliban signed a historic deal aimed at winding down America’s longest war.
Who done it?
The principals seem to have been Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, special envoy Zalmay Khalilzad and the Taliban’s political chief, Abdul Ghani Baradar. In Doha, Qatar, the parties penned a deal to initiate a withdrawal of American troops from Afghanistan.
The Taliban promise to not allow Afghanistan to become a terrorist safe haven. Despite the agreement, the road to peace in Afghanistan is not a straight path due to intra-Afghan talks. This factor could make the entire deal collapse.
Before the deal was signed Pompeo said,
“This is how we will ensure that Afghanistan never again serves as a base for international terrorists… We’re just at the beginning. Furthering the cause of peace will require serious work and sacrifice by all sides… This agreement will mean nothing and today’s good feelings will not last if we don’t take concrete actions on commitments and promises that have been made.”
Have we learned nothing?
America and the Taliban have been in conflict in Afghanistan since right after the World Trade Center Attack, September 11, 2001. The terrorist attacks were carried out by al Qaeda operatives under the protection of the Taliban.
Reaching a peace deal with the Taliban is a top foreign policy priority for President Trump during his 2020 reelection bid. He campaigned on America-First principles that would put an end to the endless wars abroad.
“Signing this agreement with the Taliban is an unacceptable risk to America’s civilian population. This is an Obama-style deal. Legitimizing Taliban sends the wrong signal to ISIS and al Qaeda terrorists, and to America’s enemies generally.”
What the deal means to the parties
We need to understand what this agreement means to the parties. The president sees the agreement as contributory to two of his campaign promises. He believes this allows America to securely withdraw from Afghanistan. Further, he understands this to reduce America’s commitments to wars abroad. That’s what in it for Trump. But Islam has been at war with America since before Thomas Jefferson was President.
What’s in it for the Taliban is that they have promised nothing. They get to claim they have driven America out. The Taliban are an Islamic fundamentalist group. By signing an agreement promising to not allow Afghanistan to become a terrorist safe haven they mean they will not allow Kafir, non-believers, to stay. We should understand what we are signing.
The current proposed agreement gives nothing. The Taliban hate America and all western values and principles. They are in a religious jihad. What we do or say short of submission to them means nothing to them. Their jihad against America does not end because we decide to leave. It simply means they will travel to fight us. Did the agreement actually commit the Taliban to peace? I don’t think so.