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New Yorker Magazine reveals how Afghan peace talks failed

ANI | Updated: Dec 12, 2021 02:53 IST


New York [US], December 12 (ANI): The New Yorker Magazine in a report revealed how the Afghan peace talks failed.
As per the report, throughout the negotiations between the Taliban and the Trump Administration, Ashraf Ghani and his government were sidelined, reported Tolo News.
The report titled "The Secret History of the US Diplomatic Failure in Afghanistan" shed light on the Afghan peace process--from its start in 2010 to the foreign forces' withdrawal in August of this year.
It covers the failure of the peace process and the fall of Kabul, and is written by Steve Coll and Adam Entous, reported Tolo News.
According to the New Yorker report, the first attempts for making peace between the Taliban and the Afghan government started in November 2010. However, the attempts did not materialize because the Taliban refused to work with the then-president Hamid Karzai government, seeing him as "an illegitimate puppet."
On the other hand, Karzai also objected to the US conferring legitimacy to the Taliban. "You betrayed me!" Karzai shouted at Ryan Crocker, the US Ambassador to Afghanistan, during a meeting in late 2011.
The peace talks got serious during Donald Trump's administration because the US president was determined to pull out US soldiers from Afghanistan, the report said.

According to the New Yorker, Trump even had asked Zalmay Khalilzad, the then US envoy for Afghan peace, to provide the Taliban with money if that would encourage them to have a peace deal.
Finally, the US and the Taliban drafted a deal that was signed in February 2020. According to the New Yorker, Ghani asked for military assistance from Biden, such as more helicopters, and the continuation of logistical support by the American contractions. Biden's response was vague, according to Afghan officials present in the room, reported Tolo News.
The New Yorker touched upon the release of Taliban prisoners. According to the report, the then US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in a meeting with Ghani in Kabul urged him to be flexible about releasing the Taliban's prisoners and assured him that "The United States is your leverage. If we do not get what we want, we will not leave," he said. "We will only leave when there is a political resolution."
"This clarity that you will stand with us in the negotiation is something that we have never had," Ghani told him, according to the report.
The New Yorker said the Taliban had agreed on terms over counterterrorism and restrictions on fighting, especially stopping Taliban fighters from attacking US and NATO troops as they withdraw based on the agreement.
"If one American dies after the deal is signed, then the deal is off," Miller told the Taliban envoys before the Doha deal.
Based on the Doha deal, the intra-Afghan peace talks was scheduled for March 10, 2020, to seek an enduring peace in Afghanistan. The talks, however, started six months later than the date specified in the deal.
The talks did not bear fruit, while at the same time war intensified in the country, which according to Miller was clearly "violations in spirit, if not the written word" of the Doha deal.
The intra-Afghan talks did not lead to peace and the Taliban continued overrunning provinces. Kabul finally fell on August 15th, 2021. (ANI)

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