Talking to the Taliban: Hope Over History?


On June 18, the Taliban officially opened a political office in Doha, Qatar for the purpose of conducting peace talks with the U.S. and Afghan governments. But as this one last attempt is made to strike a deal, history suggests that a viable or sustainable peace settlement will be extremely difficult to achieve.

Previous attempts at negotiating with the Taliban, initiated both by the Soviets during their war in Afghanistan in the 1980s and the United States since 2001, have been characterized by wishful thinking and a lack of strategic direction. The experiences of both countries have also shown the difficulty of trying to strike a bargain while rushing for the exit.

Please join the New America Foundation’s National Security Studies Program for a conversation about the history of talks with the Taliban, and the prospects of success for the latest -- and probably last -- shot at a peace deal.

Click to read Talking to the Taliban: Hope Over History? , a recent report co-authored by two of the featured speakers.


Amb. Omar Samad
Senior Central Asia Fellow, National Security Studies Program, New America Foundation

Ryan Evans
Assistant Director, Center for the National Interest
Co-author, Talking to the Taliban: Hope Over History?

Peter Neumann
Director, International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation
Co-author, Talking to the Taliban: Hope Over History?

Ben Connable
International Policy Analyst, RAND Corporation