On Wednesday, September 10th on Fox & Friends First, Institute of World Politics professor Rebeccah Heinrichs was asked to comment on the recent cancellation of peace talks between the U.S. government and the Taliban at Camp David.
Professor Heinrichs expertly noted that beyond finding a solution that is optimal for maintaining stability in the region, we must also find one which honors the lives of those who died in the September 11th attacks as well as in the ensuing conflict. When asked about how the U.S. government should best move forward to achieve this, Professor Heinrichs asserted that among a lot of “bad choices,” at this point, the best one is to not negotiate with the Taliban while they actively continue to protect and harbor Al-Qaeda.
Though the Taliban released a statement in response to the cancellation of the Camp David meeting stating they have been and are still willing to continue peace talks, their behavior indicates the contrary. As evidence of this, Professor Heinrichs cited the recent Taliban orchestrated killings of a U.S. and Romanian soldier among other civilians in Kabul, Afghanistan on September 5th to demonstrate exactly why the U.S. cannot continue negotiations.
Continuing her commentary, Professor Heinrichs asserted that so long as the Taliban and Al-Qaeda remain inseparable and the violence by the hands of these terrorist organizations continues, peace talks are and will remain impossible. Because of the considerable resources that would be required to completely expunge the Taliban and Al-Qaeda from the region, the next step for the U.S. government should be to withdraw the bulk of our forces, while maintaining a residual force to monitor and continue counter terrorism efforts.
Professor Heinrich’s views reflect a sentiment that likely many of our service members & their families, among other Americans share: that it is time to acknowledge the considerable progress we’ve made in our counterterrorism operations and begin to bring our troops home.
In her words, it is no longer a matter of when the conflict ends but when we decide to end it.