The Secret History of the U.S. Diplomatic Failure in Afghanistan.
It characterizes Biden as a victim of a bad deal that he couldn’t rip up, Trump as reckless, and only alludes to back-channel interference by Pelosi, but biases aside, it’s a decent article.
Ghani decided to lie to Biden about the Afghan state of affairs, opting for a rosy narrative as opposed to a real assessment.
Biden in turn decided to lie to Ghani about his friendship and commitment to Afghanistan. Biden was looking for a way out at this point.
The talks didn’t fall apart, they were sabotaged by Ghani, NATO, and Biden, the same people trying to figure out what to do next.
The Americans knew it was over, but they decided to lie and have the war anyway because Ghani and NATO weren’t ready to work it out.
Ghani wasn’t interested in making a deal, wanted to retain the status quo, to remain in power, and lobbied Washington politicians hard against Trump, which is why making a deal with Ghani was a waste of time.
The article mentions Lindsey Graham, but one of the Ghani’s strongest supporters was Nancy Pelosi, whom the article conveniently doesn’t mention. The effort to undermine Trump with a fake Russian investigation and the two impeachments that followed were related to the effort by NATO and Washington politicians to stop Trump from making a successful exit from Afghanistan.
Biden was put into power by the National Security Establishment (NATO), the same people that worked behind the scenes with Ghani to undermine Trump’s effort in Afghanistan.
Nonsense. Biden not only sabotaged Doha, he could have ripped up Doha and stayed in Afghanistan if he wanted to, his own national security advisors told him to stay, Ghani didn’t want him to leave and NATO demanded he stay, he’s the president. This is the story they’re going with to make Biden look like a victim.
The real story is that Biden clung onto Doha as if his life depended on it, an easy way to get out in a reckless way while blaming Trump as reckless.
Yes, the first effort to negotiate with the Taliban happened under Obama, but Obama is a joke, and the Taliban were too busy laughing at him for any peace progress to be made.
World Bank Ghani. Imagine how mad the International bankers who put Biden in power were when Biden betrayed Ghani and left Afghanistan to the Taliban.
Ghani did his best to undermine the negotiations, to run out the clock. The understanding was when Trump loses the election, Ghani would be bailed out by the NATO candidate, i.e. Biden.
Negotiating a power-sharing agreement was part of the Doha deal, without that the US was not supposed to withdraw completely, nor would it once an agreement was formed as the Taliban would ask the US to remain to help with ISKP. Trump wanted to end the war, but wanted to keep a small residual force in Afghanistan as a base against Russia and China and to help against ISKP.
Baradar was arrested by Obama’s CIA and Pakistan, and was imprisoned in a Pakistani prison, was released at the request of Trump’s team to help move the peace process forward.
Trump thought Ghani was a crook, considered it a waste of time to negotiate with him, I would agree, much worse than a crook.
Taliban offered to hang flowers around the necks of Americans if they killed ISKP, said they can kill as many Al Qaeda and ISKP as they want.
The first time the Taliban failed to honor Doha commitments, Trump ripped Doha up himself, so for Biden to say he was “bound” by Doha is dumb, as if he even honored it.
Pompeo assured Ghani the US would only leave when there is a political resolution. No, Biden’s hands weren’t tied by a withdrawal deadline.
Ghani was not interested in a political settlement, he wanted to keep the status quo and to remain in power.
Pompeo had told Milley the drawdown would be conditional, i.e. U.S. troops would stay until certain conditions (political settlement) had been met.
Yes, Trump could overrule that as could Biden, which Biden did when he decided he wanted out, decided to blame Trump as tying his hands.
The spike in violence at the end of 2020 was in response to Biden winning the election (strange the article doesn’t even mention there was an election). The Taliban issued a statement the very next day to Biden stating that he should not deviate from Doha, which he did and then some. They didn’t trust him so increased violence as a warning to Biden.
This pretty much sums up Biden. To Biden, Pakistan is more important than retaining a twenty year investment into Afghanistan. Biden is a small-minded man, as are those who voted for and/or supported him.
Khalilzad should have quit at this point, he should have known what Biden was going to do next.
Two days after Biden is sword in, his envoy Sullivan made clear Doha was dead. Yes, he meant it with a view to escalate the conflict. They wanted to return to the status quo and were willing to spark a war to do it.
Biden wanted U.S. troops out, didn’t want to grant extensions because he wanted to be able to blame Doha, was afraid if he didn’t take advantage of Doha as a scapegoat then NATO would force him to stay indefinitely. No one loved Doha more than Biden.
The intent was not a Taliban government, but a 50/50 Taliban/Republic power-sharing agreement. Biden and Ghani turned it instead into a 50/50 Taliban/Haqqani power-sharing agreement.
Yes, Trump and Khalilzad should have made Ghani disappear much earlier, that was a big mistake. Unfortunately it was too late, 2020 was an election year, and Ghani and his World Bank backers were lobbying all of NATO and Washington to remove Trump from power. Trump was already going to be impeached twice, a third impeachment might have been a bit too much.
Blinked decided to further sabotage Doha by setting it aside and instead creating a new 8-page draft of a new “breathtakingly ambitious” (read: never gonna happen, deliberately sabotaging) peace agreement with all sorts of bells and whistles that Taliban rolled out of their chairs and laughed at. Taliban again told Biden to stick with Doha.
Biden then publicly explored delaying a troop withdrawal (Biden already rejected this in private because he didn’t want to get stuck indefinitely in Afghanistan) to bolster NATO and piss of the Taliban, and Taliban again warned Biden to stick with Doha.
Taliban again making clear that “bad things would happen” if the Americans keep talking about breaking Doha.
Biden decides to break Doha by extending the “conditions-based” withdrawal deadline to September 11, likely as a big fuck you to Afghanistan for 9/11, and begins withdrawing right as the summer fighting season was heating up. Taliban got the memo that Doha was dead, called off the Turkey peace summit, and went to war. They took the country in a matter of days.
Biden’s people told Ghani and the ANDSF to give up most of the country and make a stand in the cities, which they failed to do as well.
I’m not a military guy, Biden says. No, shit.
After the Taliban took all the rural areas but still held off on taking the cities, the Pentagon decided to start bombing them, which forced them to fight for the cities to better hide in them from airstrikes. Mistake after mistake.
Americans and Ghani desperate to make a peace deal in Doha well into August. It was over at this point and the Taliban knew it. Pride comes before the fall.
Any effort to make peace after August 10th was a waste of time. It was done.