Taliban: US Won't Support Non-State Actors

Photo: Getty Images [via CNN]

The Facts

  • This week, Taliban sources reportedly told Al Jazeera that the US has agreed not to fund non-state actors in Afghanistan. The commitment was reportedly made when top US officials met with the Taliban on Oct. 8 in Qatar, the first meeting since al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri was killed in Kabul by a US drone strike in July.

  • The US delegation at the meeting included CIA Deputy Director David Cohen and State Dept. Special Representative for Afghanistan, Tom West. Abdul Haq Al-Wasa, head of Taliban intelligence, led the Afghan representatives.

The Spin

Pro-establishment narrative

Maintaining diplomatic relations is a necessary foreign policy for the US and other nations. Speaking with Taliban leadership isn't the same as legitimizing the new regime, and it's only through conversations between the regime and Western governments that respect for human rights can ultimately be restored.

Establishment-critical narrative

The Taliban has little interest in following through with their diplomatic promises to the US. The recent killing of Ayman al-Zawahiri in July reveals this, as Afghanistan was used as a base for transnational terrorism. How can the US have any hope for negotiations if fundamental commitments are ignored?

Nerd narrative

There's a 25% chance that the United States will recognize the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan before 2030, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

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