Los Angeles Times

Peace with the Taliban in Afghanistan appears closer than ever. What could that look like?

KABUL, Afghanistan - Seventeen years after the U.S. military-led invasion of Afghanistan - after the deaths of more than 2,400 American troops, tens of thousands of Afghan soldiers and police and untold numbers of civilians - the prospect of a truce with the Taliban appears to be inching closer to reality.

Six days of talks in the Persian Gulf state of Qatar ended over the weekend with a commitment by U.S. and Taliban negotiators to reconvene soon and the outlines of a deal under which all 14,000 U.S. troops would depart Afghanistan within 18 months.

The talks still don't include the Afghan government, whose leader, President Ashraf Ghani, on

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