The United States has been involved in the war in Afghanistan for 17 years, longer than both World Wars and the Korean War combined.
But depending on how ongoing peace negotiations shake out, there could finally be light at the end of the tunnel for the country’s war-weary citizens and the American soldiers stationed there.
Negotiators for the United States and the Taliban have been meeting since last Monday in Doha, Qatar to flesh out the specifics of a Pentagon-proposed deal that would, in principle, allow for the withdrawal of American troops from Afghanistan in exchange for a guarantee from the Taliban that terrorist groups won’t be allowed to use Afghan soil as a safe haven while planning to carry out attacks against the U.S. Notably absent from these discussions is Afghan President Ashraf Ghani because the Taliban is reticent to speak with him or his negotiators.
What would a completed peace agreement look like? What has the tone been among U.S. and Taliban negotiators as discussions have progressed? How would the Pentagon’s plan as currently proposed look when implemented on the ground? What would it mean for Afghanistan’s government? Is there any hope for true peace so long as the Taliban and Afghan government remain reluctant to talk?
With guest host Libby Denkmann
Daud Qarizadah, journalist with BBC Persia who has been following the peace negotiations; he tweets @DaudQarizadah