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Karzai’s Plan to Court Taliban

In London, Afghan President Hamdi Karzai unveiled his proposal to lure the Taliban leadership away from the insurgency. His strategy goes much further than that preferred by many American officials, who favor luring back low- and mid-level Taliban fighters.

The Obama administration is debating the implications of negotiating with top Taliban leaders.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was in London at a conference intended to generate money and international support for the war effort in Afghanistan. She acknowledged the need to talk to one’s enemies, but did not express full support for Karzai’s plan.

Questions of how to deal with reconciliation loom large. Many former Taliban fighters who switched to support the government have received death threats and have trouble finding work. Afghan officials hope that more NATO forces will help them support those who have defected from the Taliban. The topic was central to the debate at the conference. The U.S. has pledged to increase troop levels in Afghanistan to 100,000.

See NPR for more.

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