The Christian Science Monitor

Why US talks with the Taliban are suddenly on the table

The United States has a lot invested in Afghanistan: a longer war than both world wars and its intervention in Vietnam combined, more than $2 trillion, and more than 2,370 service members’ lives lost.

So why would the US choose now to enter into talks with the Taliban, the Afghan insurgency the US pushed out of power in Kabul in 2001 for harboring the Al Qaeda masterminds of the 9/11 attacks?

To understand the mounting signs of the Trump administration’s interest in negotiating some form of political deal with the Taliban, consider the conjunction of two key factors.

First is a US president, in Donald Trump, who has long considered Afghanistan a “bad investment” and who wants the nearly 15,000 US troops he begrudgingly agreed to keep there withdrawn – sooner rather than

Concern at State and DefenseRisk for Taliban, tooA not-so-distant withdrawal

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