Is the United States literally trying to buy more time with the Taliban?
Reports broke late last night and this morning that hint such a deal may be in play.
One US official claimed the CIA boss has already met with Taliban leadership, while there are also rumors payment may have been made to secure more time.
Meeting with the Taliban
Fox News is now reporting that CIA Director William Burns held a secret meeting with Taliban leader Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar in Kabul on Monday.
This would constitute the highest level of meetings that have taken place with this administration and Taliban leadership.
With the meeting details remaining unclear, it is being assumed that Burns was pushing for more time.
Jean-Yves Le Drian, France’s foreign minister, stated, “We are concerned about the deadline set by the United States on August 31.
“Additional time is needed to complete ongoing operations.”
To this point, the Taliban has been adamant that an extension will not be given, but is that just a threat or do they have real plans for “consequences” if the United States still has a presence?
Some are already speculating that while the Taliban may not take direct action, it will encourage small pockets of groups to act on its behalf.
There is also speculation that a payoff may have occurred to buy some additional time on the ground.
Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby was asked directly about such a payment, and he stated “No,” but there was a caveat.
He added, “Not that I am aware of.”
Which, of course, means there is a very real chance this is, at the very least, being discussed as an option.
One can only imagine the outrage around the globe if it is found that Biden put cash directly into the hands of terrorists to try to worm his way out of a crisis he created.
The administration could also agree to free up funds that have been frozen since the Taliban takeover, which is just as bad as putting cash directly into the hands of these terrorists.
Biden reportedly has been given 24 hours by the Pentagon to commit to an extension or having all troops removed from the area by the August 31 deadline.
One way or another, this is all going to come out in the wash very soon.
Sources: Fox Business & Fox News