What’s worse is that they ignored one of the most important rules of negotiation, if a deal seems as if it is too good to be true, it probably is.
But now, it turns out, Mr. Mansour was apparently not Mr. Mansour at all. In an episode that could have been lifted from a spy novel, United States and Afghan officials now say the Afghan man was an impostor, and high-level discussions conducted with the assistance of NATO appear to have achieved little.
“It’s not him,” said a Western diplomat in Kabul intimately involved in the discussions. “And we gave him a lot of money.”
American officials confirmed Monday that they had given up hope that the Afghan was Mr. Mansour, or even a member of the Taliban leadership.
Just wait a week from now they will admit that the fake terrorist was a thirteen year-old-kid from Bay Ridge Brooklyn.
The fake Taliban leader even met with President Hamid Karzai, having been flown to Kabul on a NATO aircraft and ushered into the presidential palace, officials said.
….Doubts were raised about the man claiming to be Mullah Mansour — who by some accounts is the second-ranking official in the Taliban, behind only the founder, Mullah Mohammed Omar — after the third meeting, held in the southern Afghan city of Kandahar. A man who had known Mr. Mansour years ago told Afghan officials that the man at the table did not resemble him. “He said he didn’t recognize him,” said an Afghan leader, who spoke on the condition of anonymity.
The Western diplomat said the Afghan man was initially given a sizable sum of money to take part in the talks — and to help persuade him to return.
We have also been helping the faker out by providing him with safe passage, air transport, and securing roadways.
The discussion now is who exactly sent this fake Mansour, the Taliban as a way to tweak the “great Satan,” or maybe the Pakistani intelligence service as part of their game of appearing to help NATO efforts to go after the Taliban while actually helping the Taliban.
Whoever sent the “faker” we probably should have recognized it, because he was offering something too good to be true.
….The man claiming to be representing the Taliban laid down several surprisingly moderate conditions for a peace settlement: that the Taliban leadership be allowed to safely return to Afghanistan, that Taliban soldiers be offered jobs, and that prisoners be released. The Afghan man did not demand, as the Taliban have in the past, a withdrawal of foreign forces or a Taliban share of the government.
As we warned when Obama promised to reach out to the Taliban, we got our hand slapped away. Our American foreign policy is dangerously naive’. Its time our President understand that you cannot meet halfway, someone that does not want to meet you at all.