August 11, 2010

Afghanistan and Team Obama

Pregnant widow accused of adultery executed by Taliban

Kabul, Afghanistan (CNN)
-- The Taliban has executed a pregnant widow accused of adultery in western Afghanistan, provincial and district officials said Monday.

The 47-year-old woman, Sanam Gul, also known as Sanam Bibi, was killed in Badghis province Saturday morning, said Ashrafuddin Majidi, the provincial governor's spokesman.

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Joe Biden: Taliban negotiations likely

Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. said Tuesday that 70 percent of the Taliban in Afghanistan and Pakistan are essentially mercenaries who possibly could be negotiated with instead of fought, and said the United States likely will try this approach.

Mr. Biden, in Belgium to discuss Afghanistan with NATO officials in advance of next month's summit, said that he did not know what kind of concessions Taliban members might be willing to make, and said that the Afghan government would have to initiate and approve of any such talks.

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Seven Things to Remember When We Talk to the Taliban

Is your stomach churning yet? The occasionally salacious but usually accurate Guardian is reporting that Team Obama is signaling that it's ready to negotiate with the Taliban. Through "trusted" intermediaries like the Pakistanis and Saudis, naturally, and via plausibly denied channels, of course, but... really? Is this what a peace-in-your-first-term, Nobel Prize-winning president looks like? If we're going to reconcile ourselves to this kind of indecent proposal — the last one led to the bloody Swat Valley offensive — the U.S. had better not lose site of reality. Here's how. If it's not too late.

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