Barack Obama: Yesterday's Man.
Utterly clueless at a moment of revolutionary ferment sweeping the world, stupidity is his prerogative at home. But abroad, he persists in talking to all the wrong people, for all the wrong reasons: "To draw the Afghan insurgents toward reconciliation, the administration is supporting a plan by President Hamid Karzai that would allow the Taliban to open an office in Kabul or perhaps outside Afghanistan, where contacts might be easier. Saudi Arabia was discussed as one possible site, but a more likely venue would be Turkey. The Turkish government is pondering the issue." So is the Khomeinist regime in Tehran. When it comes to selling out Afghan democrats, Obama and Ahmadinejad appear to be on the same page: "The Islamic Republic of Iran is ready to hold Afghan peace meeting through participation of Afghan political groups."
That is not how you win peace in a democratic and sovereign Afghan republic. It is how you make America the enemy of Afghanistan's democrats, secularists, reformers, women's rights' leaders, and its young and besieged parliamentarians. Here's Ahmad Behzad, a young Herati MP:
"The consequences of talks and negotiations with the terrorist groups including the Taliban, has been devastating and damaging. First, it has encouraged the Taliban. With the proposition of this motto Taliban revived and planned to exert more pressure on the government of Afghanistan and the foreign forces to gain better and bigger privileges. That part of the society who no more had any hope for the Taliban gained hopes that this group will again emerge in the political scene. Third, the government of Afghanistan is trying to give Taliban privileges by releasing the Taliban captives who were caught in fights against the political system of Afghanistan. It has given Taliban more supremacy as they have again joined their ranks."