Sunday, February 04, 2007

So This Wasn't Predictable?

The British had cut a deal with the Taliban in Afghanistan over making Musa Qala a neutral town. It didn't work out as the British intended:

Musa Qala on Thursday was overrun by an estimated 200 Taliban fighters who disarmed local police, ransacked the district center and hoisted their trademark white flag.

The town had been subject to a peace deal brokered last October between village elders and the Helmand provincial government that prevented NATO, Afghan and Taliban fighters from coming within 3 miles of the town center.

The Taliban did not honor that truce. I doubt they intended to honor it longer than it would take to get NATO forces away from the town.

If you are shocked by this slap in the face to the power of just sitting down and talking to our enemies, I want you to go sit in the corner for a half hour and contemplate your utter foolishness. There is simply no excuse for that kind of failure in reasoning after more than five years of war with these thugs.

And in case you miss the point, the only difference between negotiating with our Taliban enemies and our Iranian or North Korean enemies is the scope of the consequences once the enemy breaks the agreement we think we have.

So NATO troops will have to retake the town. And some will die. And some Afghan civilians will die and others will have become a little more reluctant to aid the government (at least for a time) after essentially being abandoned to the tender mercies of the Taliban.