WASHINGTON — US President Donald Trump on Friday hoped that Pakistan will help the US in Afghanistan as peace talks with the Taliban has apparently entered its last phase.
Trump said he had developed a “good chemistry” with the Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, whom he met at his Oval Office last week.
“We’re doing very well, as you know, with Pakistan. I met a gentleman who I liked a lot — as you know — last week, from Pakistan. I have a lot of respect for him. We have a good friendship — a good feeling, good chemistry. I think Pakistan will help us, and I think others will get involved,” Trump told reporters at the White House.
Responding to a question if the Taliban could be trusted, Trump said “I don’t want to say if they can be trusted or not. Look, history, I would say, is not so good, but they don’t like us much either. But we’ve brought them down; we’ve brought the number of soldiers down very substantially. We are talking to them. We have a lot of advantages making a deal with us.”
“Let’s put this way: We’re more police than anything else, and that’s not for our soldiers,” he added.
“I’ve said — I’ve said it a lot. We could win the war in Pak (sic) — we could win the war, if you look at it — and you can look at it any way you want — we can win the war in Afghanistan in less than a week,” Trump said.
“But I’m not looking to kill 10 million people. I’m not talking nuclear. I’m not talking nuclear. But we’d win that war in less than a week, and I have that as an option, always. But that’s what we’re not looking to do,” asserted the US President.
Trump touts Afghan peace ‘progress’ but warns able to kill millions
President Donald Trump flagged “progress” in peace talks with the Taliban on Friday but again warned that he has the ability to wipe out much of Afghanistan within days, killing millions.
“We’ve made a lot of progress. We’re talking,” Trump told reporters at the White House.
Trump said that US forces, bogged down for nearly two decades, “could win Afghanistan in two days or three days or four days, but I’m not looking to kill 10 million people.”
He made a similar comment about 10 million casualties in July, but this time specified that this would not involve nuclear weapons.
“I’m talking conventional.”
Trump was vague, however, in answering a question about a Washington Post report on a deal being brokered in which the United States would cut troop levels in Afghanistan to as low as 8,000 from their current 14,000.
In return, the Taliban insurgency would cease fire, enter peace talks with the US-backed Afghan government, and pledge to keep out Al-Qaeda, whose 9/11 attacks on the US spurred the invasion that ousted the Taliban from power in Afghanistan in 2001. (AFP)