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Afghan Reconciliation Efforts Have Failed

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Posted on Jul 2, 2011
Flickr / isafmedia

Insurgents reportedly identified as Taliban hear the terms of their surrender amid an Afghan-led combat operation in 2010.

In 2005, the U.S.-backed Afghan government instituted a reconciliation program aimed at reintegrating insurgents who aggressively opposed the U.S. invasion of their country. With minimal political support and inadequate funding, that program failed, and many who voluntarily left groups such as the Taliban have received none of the promised benefits.

In a rare style of reporting that reveals the human vulnerability of the United States’ official enemies in Afghanistan, Foreign Policy correspondent Emilie Jelinek, who has been reporting from that country since 2004, lets the frustrated Afghans speak for themselves. —ARK

Foreign Policy:

Three months ago I met Haji Ismael, the head of Khost’s Program Tahkim Sulh (commonly referred to as the PTS, the government’s former National Program for Reconciliation), set up in 2005 to reconcile and reintegrate insurgents with the objective of “healing national wounds.” The program failed, due to poor funding and a lack of political support, which meant that opportunities to bring in Taliban were squandered. The Afghan Peace and Reintegration Program (APRP) now proposes to integrate the existing capacities of the PTS into its framework, although it is unclear how, with the added risk that this will simply revive former failed efforts under a new name.

... When I met him [Ismael],  in February, he introduced me to two recently reconciled insurgents, who told me they’d decided to stop fighting for two reasons. Firstly, because they said they trusted the head of the provincial commission; and secondly, because the government had promised them jobs, housing and benefits if they surrendered. This was almost a year ago, and they haven’t seen a single Pakistani Rupee.

“I regret joining this process; all of my brothers regret it as well,” one of them told me. “We have received no assistance from the government, nothing that they promised. We gave up everything in Miram Shah [the capital of Pakistan’s North Waziristan agency, and a center of Taliban-affiliated groups] and now we have nothing, we can’t get jobs. Our six families share a single room. Not even animals live the way we do now. We receive threatening calls from Miram Shah, that we will be found and killed and our home attacked.”

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By Cliff Carson, July 3, 2011 at 8:39 pm Link to this comment

Yes TDoff

I think it is a miracle they fell for the ploy a second time.  Yes I said a second time.

On another thread earlier this year I wrote of the Afghan Convoy of Death.  If you read about this or participated in the discussion, you will recall that the thousands of Taliban who accepted an offer from the Northern Alliance were brutally murdered once they had surrendered.

Worse yet American Special Forces were involved.  The Government Trolls came out like a thicket of misquotes never proving it didn’t happen, but insinuating that anyone who would report such a thing would not be a loyal American.

But happen it did.  So I would say the Afghans who fell for it again must of forgotten that old American Saying “Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me.”

We need to restore ethical and moral behavior in our Government.

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By TDoff, July 3, 2011 at 6:12 am Link to this comment

Quelle surprise! The citizens of Afghanistan don’t trust the US, or the US-installed puppet governments. Which shows that somehow, in all the tumult, they have kept their sanity and sense of reason.

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