The divergent approaches of the U.S., Pakistan, and Afghanistan highlight the complexity of developing a unified front on terrorism.
As Taliban violence surges, American, Pakistani, and Afghan leaders pursued clearly divergent approaches this week, underscoring the complexities of devising a coherent strategy to contain the problem.
While Afghan President Hamid Karzai has been trying to negotiate for peace with the Taliban, US drones fired once again on Taliban targets in Pakistan. And while the US Army prepares to change its military commander in Afghanistan, Pakistan has announced a new head of its troubled intelligence wing.
President Karzai disclosed on Monday that he has been trying to broker a peace accord with the Taliban. "The negotiations ... are increasingly seen as the only solution to the violent insurgency gripping Afghanistan," the Financial Times reports.
As the Afghan war intensifies and American commanders call for increased troop levels, President Hamid Karzai said Tuesday that he had repeatedly sought the intervention of the Saudi royal family to bring the resurgent Taliban to peace negotiations.
But Mr. Karzai said his appeals had failed to yield any talks, and his tone suggested a degree of frustration with the Saudi government for not having acted more decisively. Nor was there any indication that senior Taliban leaders were ready for talks on any grounds that the Karzai government and its Western backers would be likely to accept.
On the contrary, the Taliban leader, Mullah Muhammad Omar, issued a new call on Monday for Afghans to continue their "holy war" against American and other Western troops, and promised that those heeding his call would be rewarded with a collapse of American power in the world, just as the former Soviet Union collapsed after its 10-year occupation of Afghanistan.
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