Foreign Policy Digital

It’s Time to Trust the Taliban

Afghanistan’s jihadi insurgents are ready to give America what it wants: defeat without humiliation.

In the peace process now underway with the Afghan Taliban, one-and-a-half significant U.S. interests are at stake. The “half” is the only real hang-up to signing a deal and bringing home American troops right now.

For Afghans, of course, the stakes in the present war are different and infinitely higher than for Americans, for whom the only vital interest is also the easiest to achieve: a Taliban agreement not to host international terrorists themselves and to do their utmost to prevent Afghanistan from once again being used as a base for terrorism against the West in general and the United States in particular.

One can be confident that the Taliban would not only agree to this but also follow through on the agreement. It’s not just because Taliban supporters and interlocutors, in public statements and private conversations (including my own), have

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