US never negotiates with terrorists … until now
The United States has had a longstanding policy of never … never … negotiate with terrorists. It is an important policy. It is a heartbreaking policy when dealing with international hostage situations. We also never pay off terrorists. No ransom money since that only encourages the taking of more hostages.
These have been the mainstays of America’s foreign policy. But apparently no longer.
The Untied States is currently in negotiations with the Taliban. In case your forgot, they are the officially designated terrorist organization that defeated the United States in Afghanistan — and are the puppet masters for al Qaeda.
Some argue that we must negotiate with the Taliban to get Americans, Afghan team members and others out of harms way. That may be true – but only because President Biden so badly screwed up the American retreat by leaving so many behind. People he promised NOT to leave behind.
Not only are we negotiating with terrorists, but part of the negotiation has to do with providing money to the Taliban because they are literally incapable of running Afghanistan without international assistance. In return for allowing some of the targeted folks out of Afghanistan, the United States seems to be willing to pay the ransom. Oh, they do not call it that. The Biden administration peddles it as “humanitarian aid.”
The money is supposed to alleviate some of the terrible suffering being endured under Taliban rule. In other words, we will pay the Taliban to let a few folks flee the country in return for a probably empty promise to not be too mean to those who remain.
Anyone who believes that the money will change the Taliban methods of brutal oppression one iota is a certifiable fool. All we need do is recall the billions we sent to North Korea in the Clinton administration and the plane load of American currency we sent to Iran. What did that money get us? “Nothing” is the correct answer.
History buffs will also remember the negotiations between British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain and Adolf Hitler that brought “peace in our time.” That was until the Fuhrer invaded Poland shortly thereafter. And then there was President Roosevelt at Yalta – when the ailing President ceded eastern Europe to Joseph Stalin to avoid a conflict with Russia.
I suspect that these negotiations will have some window-dressing and political face-saving results – but nothing that will deter the Taliban and al Qaeda from wanting to destroy the great American Satan.
We have seen this movie before. From a position of self-imposed weakness, the Biden administration negotiated our retreat from Afghanistan with the Taliban. They were to provide free passage for those needing to leave the country. They did not. Biden said the withdrawal would be delayed to get the endangered out. The Taliban said no. Biden deferred. Biden negotiated with the Taliban to provide security around the Kabul airport. Thirteen American service personnel died – and more than a hundred Afghans hoping to flee were killed in a suicide bomb attack.
We should not expect to get much out of these negotiations – if for no other reason than Biden is a terrible negotiator.
The very fact that we are compelled to negotiate with the Taliban – and are unlikely to get anything out of it except more money for terrorists – makes the United States look that much weaker and more pathetic on the world stage.
So, there ‘tis.