Just days before the 18th anniversary of the September 11 attacks, Donald Trump was set to secretly fly the Taliban leaders as well as Afghan President Ashraf Ghani to the United States for a meeting at Camp David. Per The Inquisitr, the end-goal was peace, and the meeting was ideally going to lead to a grand announcement of the accomplishment from Trump himself. On Saturday, Trump revealed the plan on Twitter as well as that he’d pulled the plug in response to a Taliban bombing on Thursday. However, interviews with U.S. and Taliban officials suggest that no deal was possible, and Taliban leaders issued a statement saying that more American lives would be lost due to the canceled talks.
A New York Times report shed more light on the days leading up to the meeting and the factors that ended up making it fail. According to the report, Mike Pompeo and his negotiator, Zalmay Khalilzad, said the meeting would ideally allow Trump to begin pulling troops from Afghanistan and get a commitment from the Taliban not to shelter terrorists. The move would help Trump fulfill his campaign promise to decrease forces in Afghanistan without helping terrorists that had taken American lives — a possibility that reportedly excited John Bolton.
History suggests key elements for any political/military negotiation: inclusion & candid communication between parties, details & shared agreement on key issues, a modicum of respect for all parties. All missing in this amateurish & reality show approach. https://t.co/ynVC2rHMmG
— Mark Hertling (@MarkHertling) September 9, 2019
But one bombshell in the report suggests that the biggest dividing point between the parties in the agreement was that the Taliban would visit Camp David only after the deal was announced. Reportedly, Trump did not want Camp David to be a celebration of the deal as he “wanted to be the dealmaker” who finalized the agreement.
“Mr. Trump did not want the Camp David meeting to be a celebration of the deal; after staying out of the details of what has been a delicate effort in a complicated region, Mr. Trump wanted to be the dealmaker who would put the final parts together himself, or at least be perceived to be.”
Trump reportedly wanted to speak with the Taliban and President Ashraf Ghani of Afghanistan in separate Camp David meetings to create a more “global” resolution.
In the end, no peace resolution came, and Reuters reports that the U.S. claims it will maintain military pressure on the Taliban. Zabihullah Mujahid, a Taliban spokesman, claims that the military organization will continue to take American lives and said that the U.S. continues to attack Afghanistan.
“Its credibility will be affected, its anti-peace stance will be exposed to the world, losses to lives and assets will increase,” he said.