I know we, the USA, are looking for an exit strategy from Afghanistan….but we don’t have to lie about the Taliban in finding one. They are an enemy to USA and to women. I was in a room in Kabul, Afghanistan when Secretary of State Hillary Clinton assured Afghani women that we would not abandon them. I believe the Secretary meant that and means that and I hope she convinces her boss. In the meantime, we should not lie about who the Taliban is. Here is a sample: they sure seem to enjoy hanging women in soccer fields or making them stay in homes and get no education. They are enemies to women (and let me add, to the USA.)
What do you think?
Afghan President Karzai Welcomes U.S. Remarks on Taliban
Published December 31, 2011 | Associated Press
Afghan President Hamid Karzai on Saturday welcomed remarks from the Obama administration saying that Taliban insurgents were not America’s enemies.
Earlier this month, Vice President Joe Biden said in an interview with Newsweek magazine that the Islamist militants did not represent a threat to U.S. interests unless they continued to shelter Al Qaeda.
Biden’s comments came amid reports that the Obama administration and other governments are trying to establish a peace process with the Taliban to help end the 10-year war.
“I am very happy that the American government has announced that the Taliban are not their enemies,” Karzai said in a speech to the Afghan Academy of Sciences. “We hope that this message will help the Afghans reach peace and stability.”
A senior U.S. official has told The Associated Press that Washington plans to continue a series of secret meetings with Taliban representatives in Europe and the Persian Gulf region next year.
The U.S. outreach this year had progressed to the point that there was active discussion of two steps the Taliban seeks as precursors to negotiations, the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity due to the sensitivity of the issue.
Trust-building measures under discussion involve setting up a Taliban headquarters office and the release from the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, of about five Afghan prisoners believed affiliated with the Taliban.
On Tuesday, Karzai said his government would accept the Taliban establishing a liaison office in Turkey, Qatar or Saudi Arabia for the purpose of holding peace talks.
Meanwhile, NATO troops on Saturday handed over responsibility for security in three districts of the embattled southern Helmand province to Afghan forces.
Helmand governor’s office said these included Marjah district — the site of a major offensive by coalition forces last year. Coalition operations to rout the Taliban in February 2010 yielded slower than expected returns, but a troop buildup later in the year pushed insurgents out of the main center of the district.
Nad Ali, which had been run by British troops, also transitioned from NATO to Afghan security control, a statement said.
The handovers in Helmand are part of the second phase in a transition NATO and Karzai hope will leave Afghan forces in control of the entire country by the end of 2014, when the U.S.-led coalition’s combat mission is scheduled to end.