Published: Tue, September 10, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

Republicans Criticize Trump's Planned Meeting With The Taliban Scheduled Days Before 9/11

Republicans Criticize Trump's Planned Meeting With The Taliban Scheduled Days Before 9/11

This is meaningless rhetoric created to appeal to a rah-rah sense of patriotism-by refusing to negotiate with a group like the Taliban, it only puts more American lives at risks as the forever war in Afghanistan continues.

"President Trump ultimately made the decision", Mr Pompeo told Fox News.

"When the Taliban tried to gain negotiating advantage by conducting terror attacks inside of the country, President Trump made the right decision to say that's not going to work", Mr Pompeo said on Sunday.

MARTIN: We're joined now in studio by Laurel Miller. She now directs the International Crisis Group's Asia program.

LAUREL MILLER: It's my pleasure. Trump then said that he had "cancelled the meeting and called off peace negotiations" because the Taliban had "admitted to an attack in Kabul that killed one of our great soldiers". Obviously, the attack was very tragic.

The talks had been aimed at ending almost 20 years of war in Afghanistan.

"I don't see where those negotiations go".

In a thread of tweets explaining his decision to cancel the meeting, Trump wrote, "if they can not agree to a ceasefire during these very important peace talks, and would even kill 12 innocent people, then they probably don't have the power to negotiate a meaningful agreement anyway". To invite the terroristic Taliban to Camp David, whatever the negotiating details, is really hard to swallow.

"They were coming to the United States tonight".

Khalilzad later said the United States was willing to withdraw some 5,000 soldiers within 135 days, according to a preliminary pact in which the Taliban pledged not to allow Afghanistan to be used for attacks against this nation or its allies.

Media captionIs peace with the Taliban possible?

MILLER: I think that's right.

A spokesman for US forces in Afghanistan disputed the methods and findings, but declined to provide civilian casualty figures.

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Trump relishes dramatic gestures, such as meeting North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, but the idea of inviting Taliban leaders to United States soil still stunned Washington.

Only a small group of advisers were included in the planning for Camp David - and after talks broke down and the historic meeting was scrapped, even fewer were told Trump was going to announce as much on Twitter. He is completing a book about President Trump's national security team and policies and has reported from Afghanistan for CNN since 1993. What leverage does the administration still have in these talks? He said other groups across the region would have seen the deal as a victory for the Taliban and "would have joined them".

MILLER: To some degree. I want to look them in the eye.

The longest war in American history started with USA military efforts to destroy al-Qaida terrorist training grounds protected by the Taliban. It can just do it.

The Taliban also said the U.S.'s "casualties and financial losses will increase, and the USA role in global political interaction will be discredited even further".

The initial US-Taliban deal was meant to pave the way for intra-Afghan talks on a broader political solution. The goal of the meetings was to end the US war in Afghanistan. Less than a week ago, a US delegation visited Islamabad to review the terms of the final agreement too.

Lee Ielpi also thought the talks could have been better timed. China's the biggest investor in both countries - and those investments in Afghanistan give it a reason to strive for peace there.

MILLER: Yeah. This is only the first step of peace.

Sediq Sediqqi, a spokesman for Ghani, tweeted that the Afghan government should lead the peace process.

The objective is to make "the Afghan security forces stronger so that they can fight global terrorism and create the conditions for peace", the official said.

MARTIN: So the beginning has been stalled.

MARTIN: Laurel Miller, she served until 2017 as the State Department's acting special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan.

RYAN CROCKER: Thank you, Michel.

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