Karzai to boycott talks with Taliban
It seems that Afghan president Hamid Karzai is a little upset that the Taliban prefers talking to the US as opposed to negotiating with his gracious and upstanding government.
Karzai better get used to this kind of treatment; we're leaving and we're going to depart as fast as we can negotiate a deal that will allow us to get everyone out before the Taliban hang Karzai from a sour apple tree.
The Afghan government will not take part in peace talks with the Taliban unless the process is "Afghan-led", President Hamid Karzai has said.
The statement came a day after the US said it would talk to the Taliban, who opened a political office in Qatar.
Mr Karzai earlier suspended talks with the US on its military presence in Afghanistan after Nato leaves in 2014.
Correspondents say Mr Karzai is angry the insurgents did not commit to talk directly to the Afghan government.
A statement from his office said Afghan negotiators would stay away from the Qatar talks, which were due to start within days, until "foreign powers" allowed the process to be run by Afghans.
"Unless the peace process is 'Afghanised', the High Peace Council is not attending the Taliban Qatar talks," the statement said.
Earlier, four US soldiers died in a Taliban attack at an Afghan air base, heaping further pressure on the proposed talks.
A spokesman for the Taliban said the militants had launched two rockets at Bagram airbase, the largest military base for US troops in Afghanistan.
The attack came just hours after the US announced it would open direct talks with the insurgents at their office in the Qatari capital, Doha.
I'd say the Taliban has demonstrated exactly what their intentions are going to be; they will kill us until we leave.
Given Karzai's paranoia about us selling him out - well founded paranoia - it won't be a surprise if the deal we reach with the Taliban allows them to stay in provinces of Afghanistan that they already control. It also won't be a surprise if we force Karzai to take a couple of "moderate" Taliban into his government.
It won't matter. Karzai is toast. Either his own people will take care of him or the Taliban will take over. The only thing the Afghan president may end up with is choosing the manner of his exit.