Monday, March 26, 2007

Negotiating with the Terra'ists

In some ways, this news is emblematic of Administration hypocrisy; in other ways, it's a heartening sign of realism:

The senior American envoy in Iraq, Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad, held talks last year with men he believed represented major insurgent groups in a drive to bring militant Sunni Arabs into politics.

The meetings began in early 2006 and were quite possibly the first attempts at sustained contact between senior American officials here and the Sunni Arab insurgency... Mr. Khalilzad’s willingness even to approach rebel groups seemed at odds with the public position of some Bush administration officials that the United States does not negotiate with insurgents. It was not clear whether he had to seek permission from Washington before engaging in these talks.

Of course, now Khalizad is leaving Iraq to take over John Bolton's old job at the U.N.