Back to square one for the USA as negotiations for a peace/ exit plan start with the Taliban

According to an article in New Yorker Magazine on February 20, the USA has commenced direct talks with with leaders of the Taliban in Afghanistan to explore a peace plan. This has been more or less confirmed by US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton.  However, as the US has been at war with the Taliban for almost ten years, it is difficult to see what it has established if on its leaving, it seeks to have a dialogue with the Taliban which it has steadfastly accused of being linked to Al Qaeda.

RT.COM interviewed Shahzoda Shahed, an Islamic lawyer and a member of the National Reconciliation Council in Afghanistan. He is an ‘unassociated’ deputy of Parliament and is considered to be the deputy of Hekmatyar,  a leading rebel leader who refuses to acknowledge the authority of the country’s President  Karzai.

According to him, the Taliban will never acknowledge the current government as they had warred with the Mujahideens and were proud of their successes. They are angry that the Americans destroyed all of their government structures and tried to destroy them but failed and feel that they have regained their spirit and strength and want to rule again. He comments that, essentially, they are independently-minded people and will stick to their beliefs to the very end. For them, losing is not an option. So it seems there are tough times ahead at the negotiation table for Mrs. Clinton and the Obama team.

[Middle East Contributor]

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