October 20th, 2010
01:59 PM ET

Taliban talks influence strategy

Even as NATO military officials try to minimize public attention on their role in assisting the Afghan government's meetings with Taliban and insurgent leaders, there are growing indications the program is now part of official NATO and U.S. policy.

There is extreme reluctance to spell out exactly how troops are helping.
A top International Security Assistance Force military officer told CNN
Wednesday "this issue has gotten too much over-emphasis of our role."

The goal now is to draw a picture showing an Afghan government-led peace
process as the only hope for the Taliban and insurgent fighters looking for a
way to escape further bloodshed at the hands of the coalition.

Gen. David Petraeus has acknowledged that U.S. and NATO troops are
ensuring security for fighters and insurgent leaders who want to travel to meet
with government officials.

"Indeed, in certain respects, we do facilitate that," he told a London
audience last week, "given that, needless to say, it would not be the easiest
of tasks for a senior Taliban commander to enter Afghanistan and make his way
to Kabul if ISAF were not willing and aware of it, and therefore allows it to
take place."

Inside ISAF, it is privately acknowledged by top officials that this has
included "safe passage," essentially promising not to attack or bomb convoys or
locations that may involve insurgents trying to contact the Karzai government.

But several top ISAF officials also caution that substantive progress has
not yet been made in getting Taliban and insurgent leaders to talk to the
government. As one indicator, British Maj. Gen. Phil Jones, head of the ISAF
reintegration effort, told CNN that safe passage events "are fairly rare
things, to be frank."

ISAF officials also indicate that they believe most of the insurgents
seeking to come back into Afghan life are likely for now to be affiliated with
the Quetta Shura in Pakistan, a loose organization sometimes affiliated with
Mullah Mohammed Omar.

Even as the talk is about Taliban safe passage, Petraeus' military
strategy includes significantly increasing ground and air attacks to pressure
the Taliban into believing they have no option but to come to the negotiating
table.

ISAF officials say the current rate of strikes is about four to five
times what it was 18 months ago.

The top ISAF military officer said, for example, that in the south,
troops have hit a number of IED factories and heavily wired compounds that have
to be destroyed because no one can disarm them and people can't move through
the area.

In the past 90 days, he said, troops have killed 300 senior Taliban
leaders and 800 fighters, and detained 2,000.

But, like other officials, he cautioned that so far there is little real
momentum in the process of trying to make peace with the Taliban.

soundoff (65 Responses)
  1. LarryKegel(US Army)

    What are You talking about??? You are getting worse every day!!!

    October 25, 2010 at 3:00 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Rick from LA

    Freedom is never free however, we must weigh the cost on the Afghans. This video shows the dark side of the Taliban and the light of justice that is the coalition, but like most propaganda films, it is not so cut and dry. You left out the part where bad intel lead to the deaths of those good afghans, or how the psychological stress on our soldier made them take out their frustrations on the people they were protecting. Freedom is never free but at what cost are we willing to attain, and who are the ones truly paying for it?

    October 25, 2010 at 12:31 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Night Wings

    I've worked with cool muslim people who hate the bloodshed more then anyone else. They hate the Taliban as much as anyone. I can't help to think what might have happened, if President Bush gave us the green light to go in after OBL when we had him on the run with his tail between his legs as he ran to Pakistan. We had OBL in our sights(3000 meters) away and could have killed him there and then. It was a crucial mistake by President Bush telling us to go back to OP25 Brovo..

    October 25, 2010 at 8:03 am | Report abuse |
    • LarryKegel(US Army)

      Bush Jr. did what He did for two reason... The 1st was for the Oil in Iraq... The 2nd was that Bin Laden and Family are best Friends with the Bush's and Cheney!!! I bet if You go to His Ranch You will find Him and His Family at His Ranch...

      October 25, 2010 at 3:16 pm | Report abuse |
  4. markjuliansmith

    “Against all probability, against the very nature of things, this phenomenon of Nazism continued and continually grew in force; it subdued its own reluctant nation, overcame every element of tough resistance and repulsion, gnawed its way through all obstacles, and restrictions, and gained strength from every sort of opposition. A triumph of will power, indeed, for this man and his gutter –bred following.”

    THE BEAST FROM THE ABYSS Hermann Rauschning 1941

    Have we learned nothing? Is it not clear caving in to evil begets more evil?

    Surely Mullah Mohammed Omar the Taliban leader and his companion in bloody debauchery Osama bin Laden the al-Qaeda leader have proven themselves to be vicious beasts willing to say and do anything to advance their textual template as did Hitler and his thugs not so many years ago?

    Are not the Taliban and al-Qaeda immediately recognizable in Rauschning’s 1941 text?

    The US paying for the Taliban to turn up at negotiations is based on the same logic used by British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain on 30 September 1938 who proclaimed "peace for our time" as a result of the Munich Agreement permitting Nazi German annexation of Czechoslovakia's Sudetenland.

    Apathy to the danger we face from the same textual template, though this time Islamic, of justified hate and ‘grevious harm’ against other as it has in the past will be civilized societies undoing.

    October 24, 2010 at 6:41 am | Report abuse |
    • John

      Mark. It is absurd to compare the current situation in Afghanistan with the second world war. Just face up to reality and accept that a taliban government is the most stable government that Afghanistan can have. At the moment the US have spent billions supporting a pot smoking bi-polar western educated corrupt fool called Karzai. He has neither the respect of the West, the Afghans or anyone else. The Taliban government just need to be given respect and support. Sure they do not share western liberal values but hey this is central Asia not central USA!! The Afghani's will only embrace democracy etc when they want to and at the moment they are too poor to care for anything more than security.

      October 24, 2010 at 10:36 pm | Report abuse |
      • LarryKegel(US Army)

        Why do You think We are training the Military, Police and will start next year training the different Villages!!!

        October 25, 2010 at 3:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • LarryKegel(US Army)

      I guess that would include the hate the Tea Party is doing??? This Country will go down the drain if They are elected... Thank GOD for the Presidents Veto!!!

      October 25, 2010 at 3:10 pm | Report abuse |
  5. LarryKegel(US Army)

    It is better to have it in another Country and not having it here!!!

    October 23, 2010 at 11:34 am | Report abuse |
  6. RSAT4

    war war war war. Whats wrong with Americans. War war war war war war war every day, every hour, every minute, every second a soul is taken away by American. We are tired of Americans.

    October 22, 2010 at 1:43 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Junky

    I love USA ....

    October 21, 2010 at 8:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • LarryKegel(US Army)

      So Do I!!! Why do You think I served in the Army for 6 years???

      October 22, 2010 at 1:40 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Junky

    Till USA continues to Fund Pakistan, these crazy things will continue to happen...
    Stop financial aid to Pakistan..

    ISI is using US funds against US.

    October 21, 2010 at 8:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • LarryKegel(US Army)

      Why should the innocent People suffer because of the Few??? Starving the People will only give the Enemy more reason to kill Our People!!!

      October 22, 2010 at 1:39 pm | Report abuse |
  9. LarryKegel(US Army)

    I'm getting aggravated at the right-wing idiot who keeps on posting his right-wing nonsense under my name.For the record,I say that this war stinks and an Afghanistan for the Afghans!!!

    October 21, 2010 at 5:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • S Eanwar

      I agree with u 100% Larry, more so as reasoning is impossible while these goons keep intruding, even when they are not being racist, they are saying things for the sole cause of saying it, with absolutely no understanding of the of the on going discussion.

      October 23, 2010 at 1:16 am | Report abuse |
  10. DrBombay1950

    The only good Taliban is a dead one.

    October 21, 2010 at 2:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • LarryKegel(US Army)

      If that is true... Racist are all Idiots???

      October 21, 2010 at 4:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • LarryKegel(US Army)

      Are you truly that full of hate,DrBombay1950? If so,I feel sorry for you.

      October 21, 2010 at 5:15 pm | Report abuse |
  11. S Eanwar

    @ Dan in Lafayette, IN @ Roy,

    On a constructive note in name of discussion, before it gets hijacked by the tramps; ppl who come up here and express their personal hatred, obviously reflecting more upon their own beings.

    So the Negotiations with Taliban is nothing new. Since early 2004-5 ASAF has pursued engage in fire and dialogue dual tactics. Media caught it up just now. And I see it as a dialogue of the type of Treaty of Versailles, its more of bring more ppl to the fold of stability. And its is working slow but steady. What we need to enforce is lower collateral damage, stories of atrocities by soldiers and economic development. Biggest failure so far is on economic interest not military.

    October 21, 2010 at 1:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • LarryKegel(US Army)

      You have to win the Military before You can worry about the economics!!!

      October 21, 2010 at 4:38 pm | Report abuse |
      • S Eanwar

        @ LarryKegel, It has to go hand in hand, socio political development is key in reducing whats called "mescenaries", The only economy know since 1979 is war, and threat of war means nothing to the people, promiss and hope of none does.

        October 23, 2010 at 1:12 am | Report abuse |
  12. sharefacts

    What ever we tried in last 10 year in Afghanistan has failed and Now Taliban controls 80% of Afghanistan. The only Strategy we have now on, is to get the hell out of this MESS on what ever cost. ( Talk to Taliban / Power Sharing with them / ). Talks will FAIL because Taliban wants a Withdrawal date of all NAto troops from Afghanistan first before any peace, which we will not accept, since we want 7+ permanent bases their. So fight will continue and Untimely we will cut of loses and will get the hell out in 2 years before presentational election. I bet on it.

    October 21, 2010 at 12:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • LarryKegel(US Army)

      Quit listening to Fox News!!! Because they are the only one that doesn't know We are winning the war against Tarriest!!! They are running out of places to hide... What do You think They want to talk PEACE with Us???

      October 21, 2010 at 3:26 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Roy

    Interview with Maulavi Abdul Kabir, member of the Leadership Council of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan

    Q: Some times, we hear rumors claiming that the leadership of Taliban is engaged in peace talks with the Americans and the Kabul administration. They say, the talks were held first in a certain country, then in another given country. Moreover, media reports refer to your role that you have willingness to engage in peace negotiation. Who circulate these amours and what is their objective?

    A: No doubt, the Americans have faced defeat at the military field. All their stratagems have gone awry. Now the Americans and their allies are making efforts to have some gains in the diplomatic field. Therefore, they launch spurious efforts under the name of reconciliation and peace time and again. They are trying to produce some fabricated indications in order to give cosmetic leverage to their claims. They mention names of a few members of the leadership of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, saying, they have had contacts with them or at least, shown willingness to initiate negotiation. In fact, all these are futile propaganda of the invaders aimed at creating mistrust between the Muslims and the Mujahideen. You know the enemy have not produced any evidence despite many claims to indicate that the officials of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan were engaged in talks with them. Nor they are able to produce one. This explains that the talks have not taken place nor the officials of the Islamic Emirate are intending to engage in the talks.

    October 21, 2010 at 4:25 am | Report abuse |
    • The Prophet Mohammed

      @ Roy, nice st of propaganda you found\manufactured. You back to Pakistan.

      October 21, 2010 at 7:28 am | Report abuse |
      • Dan in Lafayette, IN

        Wirklich stimmt das,Betruger? Da glaube ich nicht! Wir brachen die Friede,ebenso bald wie moglich!!! Wir mussen diesen unsittliche Krieg beenden!!! Ausserdem,warum mussen Sie das Name des Prophet Mohammedes entfuhren???

        October 21, 2010 at 8:21 am | Report abuse |
      • Roy

        If you choose to be brainwashed by the propaganda of the embedded (in bed with the army) western media then you have only yourself to be blame as you will always be in the dark and fed crap. The reality on the ground in Afghanistan is far, far different from what is reported in the press, that is why you don't hear anything about strategy these days that you were being fed some months ago. The only thing you hear now is talk with the Taliban. Ask yourself if the US and NATO were in any position of strength would they care two hoots about "talking to the Taliban". The Taliban are now in a position of strength and it is not in their interest to talk to foreign powers. They just want the foreign powers to get the heck out of their country, Afghanistan.

        October 21, 2010 at 9:06 am | Report abuse |
      • Dan in Lafayette, IN

        Good posting Roy,not like a lot of these right-wing,war loving, brainless(or should I say brainwashed) idiots here.

        October 21, 2010 at 10:28 am | Report abuse |
      • LarryKegel(US Army)

        Dan in Lafayette.IN: Wht are you trying to say??? Some of us don't under that language if any!!!

        October 21, 2010 at 4:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • LarryKegel(US Army)

      How do You know they aren't taking place??? Do You think They would out the talks on TV just so they can prove it to You??? How do you know the the Palestine and Israel are having PEACE talks???

      October 21, 2010 at 4:30 pm | Report abuse |
      • LarryKegel(US Army)

        What (Sorry)

        October 21, 2010 at 4:34 pm | Report abuse |
      • LarryKegel(US Army)

        Roy: Is that why They want to talk PEACE with us??? If They were winning They wouldn't stop the killing!!!

        October 21, 2010 at 4:36 pm | Report abuse |
      • Roy

        You are having a comprehension problem??? You need to go back to school if you do not understand simple english. The Taliban leader says:

        "This explains that the talks have not taken place nor the officials of the Islamic Emirate are intending to engage in the talks."

        If you understand this to mean "They want to talk PEACE with us??? " then you need to take comprehension lessons URGENTLY!!!

        October 22, 2010 at 4:02 am | Report abuse |
  14. pamiri

    Its is not fair that USA and other international forces are being one upping by Karzai and bringing back Taliban on power , People in the country do no like and want Taliban anymore. This action of USA and Karzai rise many questions, If USA want Taliban back then why the USA attacked on Afghanistan? There should be just one option against Taliban , which killing of them then they would be finished,
    Taliban and Karzai is just working for the benifit of Pakistan and Pashtuns not for the wellbeing of the country so that the USA and other international countries should not listen from Karzai and his relatives and folks.

    October 21, 2010 at 3:39 am | Report abuse |
    • LarryKegel(US Army)

      Because the Taliban attacked us on 9/11!!!

      October 21, 2010 at 3:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rick from LA

      Victory at the stroke of a pen will out live victory at the stroke of a sword. There is no way to win this war. Not with those Pakistani Safe heavens. If we invade, we will get drawn into a battle with a well equipped, nuclear armed ally. We should win but the costs of lives will be unbeleivable high. So much so that our losses will put our military strength at or below the level of our neighbors. The only viable strategy right now is controlled reintegration. Bring the Taliban back as partner not as a ruler. Once the gun firing stops, we pack up and leave. In 3 years when civil war breaks out. It wil be because of the failures of the Afghan governement and not because of our interventions.

      October 25, 2010 at 1:02 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Dindy.....

    I am sorry for the spelling mistakes (It is not wear ..But where .. Please read the second post

    October 21, 2010 at 12:39 am | Report abuse |
    • LarryKegel(US Army)

      Only those that don't agree with Someone check the spelling!!! Once is enough...

      October 21, 2010 at 3:38 pm | Report abuse |
  16. Dindy.....

    SAM.. there will be no end of wars because some people on this planet listen to Devil. Not God"s Holy spirit. The worst part is Devil has told some people that they are so holy than others and they must kill the unholy . I thought only Jesus was Holy. We will have no peace with anything till these people become to salvation and stop listening to devil"s tricks. The people who are not in the battle must pray with the guidance of Holy spirit. Otherwise more disasters. All the peace loving people has a mission now though they are in the battle field or they are on couches with drinks and food . Must be alert with prayers. Raise the Holy name of God and his army .(Angels) So they will attack evil and free people from the spirit of killing (Devil) Praise and pray Honestly and continuously. This is spiritual war fare and Evil spirit of Devil use people to kill each other. After 1000 years it is released according to the BIBLE. what we hear every where ?? Killings ,Blood shed, abusing . Raise the Name of God who will see our need at this moment and Praise and believe he is living God who is not deaf and answer us {ISAIAH 44:26}

    October 21, 2010 at 12:38 am | Report abuse |
    • The Prophet Mohammed

      I'm tired of people blaming it on the "Devil", we all have freedom to choose to do right or wrong. We might as well blame it on that Damn Tooth Fairy. The Devil doesn't make you do Evil- You CHOOSE to do right or wrong.

      October 21, 2010 at 2:43 am | Report abuse |
      • LarryKegel(US Army)

        You are right there!!! Why blame either GOD are the Devil for other Peoples choices??? We all have a mind to know what is right are wrong... Just live under GODS 10 commandments and You are on the right side!!!

        October 21, 2010 at 3:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • LarryKegel(US Army)

      Once was bad enough!!!

      October 21, 2010 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
  17. Dindy.....

    SAM.. there will be no end of wars because some people on this planet listen to Devil. Not God"s Holy spirit. The worst part is Devil has told some people that they are so holy than others and they must kill the unholy . I thought only Jesus was Holy. We will have no peace with anything till these people become to salvation and stop listening to devil"s tricks. The people who are not in the battle must pray with the guidance of Holy spirit. Otherwise more disasters. All the peace loving people has a mission now though they are in the battle field or they are on couches with drinks and food . Must be alert with prayers. Raise the Holy name of God and his army .(Angels) So they will attack evil and free people from the spirit of killing (Devil) Praise and pray Honestly and continuously. This is spiritual war fare and Evil spirit of Devil use people to kill each other. After 1000 years it is released according to the BIBLE. what we hear every wear ?? Killings ,Blood shed, abusing . Raise the Name of God who will see our need at this moment and Praise and believe he is living God who is not deaf and answer us {ISAIAH 44:26}

    October 21, 2010 at 12:35 am | Report abuse |
    • LarryKegel(US Army)

      I hope You are wrong there... Because This World can't afford to keep on having wars!!!

      October 21, 2010 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rick from LA

      Speak not of scriptures when discussing the business of war for the two of them are not born of the same parents. The Lord's words are meant to guide us, when we take up the sword and shield for good or bad, we deafen our ears to His will and particate in demonic acts of our own making. We need not the fallen angle to guide into this action for we are just as evil as he who was cast down from the heavens. If the Jesus did not strike down his betrayer or those who would put them to death, how can we who follow His way of life do so?

      October 25, 2010 at 12:55 pm | Report abuse |
  18. sam

    when will this conflict really end. And when can taxes reduced here in USA to pay for these wars.

    October 20, 2010 at 6:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • LarryKegel(US Army)

      The end of next year!!!

      October 21, 2010 at 3:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rick from LA

      The Conflict will never end. It will take different shapes and go on forever however we can extricate ourselves from it. Whe need to change it from a battle of military might to a conflict of political will. Then we can leave the battlefield with our honor intact and head held high even though the darkness still exists.

      October 25, 2010 at 12:49 pm | Report abuse |
  19. Just another Joe

    Are you deranged? what has this conflict got to do with the politics of 1930s Europe the power balance is totally different.

    October 20, 2010 at 6:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joseph McCarthy

      This conflict has a strong parallel with 1930's Europe. But even in this country we now have the extreme right-wing Tea Party Movement which is quite parallel to the German Nazi Party which was also extremely right-wing and we're now treating the Taliban the same way the Germans treated the Jews with extreme hatred.

      October 21, 2010 at 12:30 am | Report abuse |
      • The Prophet Mohammed

        "Attention all Taliban, we are giving away free flat bread at the factory, all Taliban report tomorrow morning at 07:00".

        Hey, if it worked for the Nazis why not? Maybe we should tell them we are giving away goats or suicide vests.

        October 21, 2010 at 7:25 am | Report abuse |
      • Dan in Lafayette, IN

        Isn't that kind of blasphemous,usurping the name of the Prophet Mohammed for your personal amusment? Think of how that must be offensive to the Muslims. We should respect all religions,even if you don't like the Muslims which is self evident according to your blogs.

        October 21, 2010 at 8:06 am | Report abuse |
      • LarryKegel(US Army)

        I would thing the Tea Party was closer to Communist and it was to Naziism!!! But both were bad for This Country and the World...

        October 21, 2010 at 3:32 pm | Report abuse |
      • The Prophet Mohammed

        @ Dan, you're welcome!

        October 22, 2010 at 2:13 am | Report abuse |
      • Dan in Lafayette, IN

        That was not me Prophet and I know how much of a pagan Muhammad was before he read the bible and took parts of it and used it for his own self righteousness. Everyone who has a problem with your insulting of Islams prophet should read bible.ca/islam/islam-questions.htm just put www dot in front.

        October 22, 2010 at 9:24 am | Report abuse |
      • Dan in Lafayette, IN

        He sinned the unforgivable sin!

        October 22, 2010 at 9:33 am | Report abuse |
      • The Prophet Mohammed

        @ Dan in Lafayette, IN – "He sinned the unforgivable sin!" Dan, now you have gone too far, I have NEVER, EVER spilled my Whiskey!

        October 24, 2010 at 9:53 am | Report abuse |
      • Rick from LA

        The Tea Party represents a different type of group. Very different from the extremist movemnts of the past. They will bring a 50's era conservatism back into vogue which means, isolationism and brinksmanship.

        October 25, 2010 at 12:47 pm | Report abuse |
  20. atal

    I see the ding-bat is back.

    October 20, 2010 at 5:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • sharefacts

      Will Talks With Taliban End or Prolong War in Afghanistan? Off Course Taliban will not reconcile because they first want all Nato troops out of Afghanistan before any peace. So lets get ready to fight 10 More years till 2020. Hell Ye....

      We have already spend 4+ Trillion dollars to Date on WARS and Lets get ready for 4+ Trillion more debt in next 10 years...

      October 21, 2010 at 6:30 pm | Report abuse |
  21. Onesmallvoice

    I don't care how,let's just stop this insane bloodshed. All NATO has to do is just drop their hidden agenda and let's have a peace that everybody can live with unlike that of WW1 which was unfair to Germany and lead to the rise of Nazism in that country.

    October 20, 2010 at 4:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • LarryKegel(US Army)

      If Germany didn't like it!!! Why did They sign it??? It was fair for the rest of the World!!! Isn't that what really counted???

      October 21, 2010 at 3:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • Onesmallvoice

      They were fooled by Woodrow Wilson's 14 point peace plan which later fell by the wayside in Versailles in 1919 when French Pres, Clemanceau along with the British finally dictated the peace terms.So the Treaty was not based on Wilson's 14 point plan.

      October 21, 2010 at 5:06 pm | Report abuse |
      • LarryKegel(US Army)

        Thank you,Onesmallvoice for your answer. One learns something new every day.

        October 21, 2010 at 5:19 pm | Report abuse |