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Trump dismisses advisers, vice president at Taliban camp meeting David



Even opposition from his own national security team, including Vice President Mike Pence, could not prevent Trump from moving forward with his plan to host Taliban leaders in the rural presidential run.

Trump ended up missing the event after a Taliban car bomb killed an American soldier and 11 others last week. But that decision came after a heated debate in the administration over the place of the summit – growing bigger, more substantive differences over the wisdom of negotiating with the Taliban in general.

Negotiations have dug Trump's hawkish national security adviser John Bolton against the nation's top diplomat, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, whose agency has been negotiating with the Taliban for the past 1

0 months.

The coloring of the debate has long been Trump's stated desire to withdraw US troops from Afghanistan after nearly two decades of war. The president insisted on fulfilling his promise to bring more US troops back home, but like his predecessors, he found several easy solutions to ending the war.

Trump disputes, reporting that he canceled Pence and "various advisers" at the Camp David meeting.

"I always think it's good to meet and talk, but in this case I decided not to," the president tweeted on Monday.

It was the Friday before Labor Day when Trump convened a meeting in the Council Hall with his closest national security advisers to discuss the state of peace talks with the Taliban. He was supposed to leave the next day to travel to Poland, but he had been missing the night before to stay back and watch the approaching hurricane.

Opposition

  Republican Representative Cites 9/11 Anniversary in Criticism of Trump's Decision to Invite Taliban to US for Peace Talks

Pence, who Trump sent to Poland in his place, was not physically present but was in contact with the president on the matter. Bolton wasn't there either – he stayed in Europe after the G7 summit in France and had a teleconference.

Bolton and his National Security Council staff have long been distrustful of US Special Envoy for Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad, who they believe had too much authority in the leadership of the talks and gave too much effect to Taliban leaders . The national security adviser, who has been sidelined by discussions in Afghanistan, has criticized the president directly.

Halilzad was also viewed by some members of Trump's national security team as an extension of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo – and hostilities between Bolton and Pompeo have emerged in recent weeks.

Even with skepticism, Pompeo and Halilzad remain focused on securing a peace deal that will reduce the number of US troops in Afghanistan from approximately 14,000 to 8,000, aligning with the president's own stated goal of withdrawal. Trump was briefed on the deal in a meeting with his national security team in Bedminster, New Jersey, at a golf course last month.

Along with other advisers who were sharply critical of the emerging Taliban deal, including Senator Lindsey Graham, South Carolina, Bolton believed that Trump would remain amenable to change if additional information was presented in a specific way , said a source familiar with the situation.

Making a deal

  Trump says he canceled Camp David's secret meeting with Taliban leaders

Only a small group of councilors were involved in Camp David's planning – and after the talks fell apart and the historic meeting was scrapped, even fewer were told that Trump would announce so much on Twitter.

Trump himself decided to cancel the talks Thursday after a Taliban car bomb, but the plan was not publicly disclosed until he announced it on Twitter. Some officials have expressed confusion over why plans should be disclosed at all.

9/11 Anniversary

Subsequently, even some Republicans became angry that Trump had considered using a mountain presidential run to host the Taliban that week celebrates the 18th anniversary of terrorist attacks on September 11, which sparked the war in Afghanistan.

"Camp David is the place where American leaders meet to plan our response after al-Qaeda, backed by the Taliban, killed 3,000 Americans on 9/11. No member of the Taliban should step there. Once, "wrote reporter Liz Cheney on Twitter. She said Trump had made the right decision to end the talks.

Appearing on Sunday morning talk shows, Pompeo mentioned an administration debate about using the talk retreat, but said Trump eventually decided that this would be the right place.

"We have all been discussing as we discuss how to try to achieve the right end result. While Camp David often has discussions about war, there have also been discussions about peace, "he told ABC's This Week." "There are some pretty bad actors who have traveled through this place throughout recorded history. This is an important place. "

Now the status of Taliban talks remains unclear. Although Trump said in his tweet Saturday that the peace talks have been terminated, the White House is currently discussing new dates for a future potential meeting with the US, the Taliban and The Afghan government, according to a source familiar with the matter, is unclear whether the Taliban will have to make firm and swift commitments before the meeting.

"We will move away from an agreement if others try to use violence to get better. goals in the negotiations, "Pomp said o Sunday on "State of the Union" on CNN "It's not right. It's not appropriate. He killed an American. And there was no point in rewarding the Taliban for this kind of bad behavior. "


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