So this happening:
Senior US officials said on Tuesday that representatives will begin formal talks with the Taliban "within a few" days at a new office in Doha, Qatar.
The Afghan Taliban opened the office to help restart talks on ending the 12-year-old war, saying it wanted a political solution that would bring about a just government and end foreign occupation.
Senior Barack Obama administration officials, speaking on condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to speak on the record, described the office opening to AP as a stepping stone to full Taliban renouncement of al Qaeda.
What I want to know is: Why? Why are we trying to make peace with the Taliban? Does anyone expect that peace to hold once we've exited the country? No, this will be Vietnam all over again, where the bad guys resume war just about the time our last soldier leaves the country. The Afghan National Army is riddled with Taliban and al Qaeda, too, so it's a pretty sure bet who will win in the end.
Is Obama opening talks just to save face, to show the world he's made a good-faith effort? How much face will he have left, when his purported peace partners make a mockery of his efforts as soon as his back is turned?
We should have either kept a small footprint and continued to wage a low-intensity anti-terror fight, or bugged out completely. Instead, we had this phony surge in order to force a phony peace. But I suppose there will be a brief moment of glory, when the diplomats and the leaders can all come together and smile for the cameras and give awards to each other and remind us of how wonderful they all are.
Or maybe I'm just not being cynical enough.