Would Obama try for a settlement with Taliban
0 comments | by George Friedman
Well, according to what’s been said by the administration, they are attempting to negotiate with the Taliban right now. I think, either way you play it politically, it’s equally troubling for President Obama if he doesn’t have peace by the time the election, the charge can be made that he has an open-ended war, that he doubled-down on Bush’s policy, and be criticized by both sides of the spectrum. If he does make an agreement, it will be charged that he capitulated to the enemy. He’s going to have to live with it either way. The worst thing that could happen to him, is to be suffering a series of significant defeats with large and growing American casualties, Americans captured on the ground and things like that. That is the thing that he is going to have a great deal of difficulty with. Its not that he isn’t going to have difficulty no matter what he does, but that’s his worst-case scenario. He really, if there is a Taliban offensive under way, he really needs to shut it down fast for political reasons, as well as military.
We must not forget that Taliban would seek total control after Americans leave and Pakistan would demand a much broader Strategic Payoff if the talks have to be successful. Editor