A Test Match with the Taliban
Under the tutelage of Pakistan’s military, the Taliban brought peace to Afghanistan the last time it ruled the country. But it was the peace of the graveyard, which it could establish once again – this time with the support of the United States.
NEW DELHI – At the recent World Cup cricket tournament in England, a plucky Afghan team composed mainly of former refugees gave a surprisingly good account of themselves, including in matches against their neighbors, India and Pakistan. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said of two other Afghan teams – the Taliban and the government – that met in Doha, Qatar, earlier this month to agree on a “road map for peace.”
The Afghan government officials who participated in the Doha talks could not even claim to be what they were, because their interlocutors, a murderous band of fanatics, do not recognize the Afghan government. Instead, the delegation was politely described as a group of representatives from Afghanistan, without saying whom exactly they represented.
After two days of talks, the participants agreed on eight points in a joint resolution, prompting Zalmay Khalilzad, the US Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation, to tweet that the talks had “concluded on a very positive note.” He congratulated the participants “for finding common ground.”