March 29, 2010

IT'S NOT ROCKET SCIENCE...:

A Deal With the Devil: Gulbuddin Hekmatyar is a vicious, brutal, devious warlord. He could also be one of America's tickets out of Afghanistan. (Ron Moreau and Sami Yousafzai, 3/28/10, NEWSWEEK)

Officials in Washington express mixed reactions to the idea of negotiating with Hekmatyar. His fighters are thought to have led assaults that nearly overran two small American bases in Nuristan province last October, killing eight American soldiers and wounding 24. Many national-security professionals, especially in the intelligence field, say they're disgusted to think of cutting deals with someone who has so much blood on his hands. On the other hand, as Gen. David Petraeus likes to say, you make peace with your enemies, not your friends. People at the Pentagon are speaking more cautiously, mostly echoing Defense Secretary Robert Gates's recent assertion that it's too soon to begin discussing peace in Afghanistan.

In this case, America's view may be beside the point. "Karzai's showing us he's not our puppet," says Bruce -Riedel, the former CIA analyst who led last year's review of Afghan policy for the Obama administration. "This isn't really our dance. This is an Afghan dance." All the same, some in the American government seem to like the tune. They speculate that with enough U.S. cash to sweeten the deal, Karzai just might be able to direct Hekmatyar's forces against the Taliban. Although personal comforts and luxuries have never seemed to exert much appeal for Hekmatyar, his appetite for power is vast, and money could help him get more of what he craves.


...get him out in the open by pretending to make a deal and then kill him.

Posted by Orrin Judd at March 29, 2010 5:33 AM
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