Still more short-sighted realpolitik. There seems to be an endless supply, and no amount of evidence will shake the false assumptions on which this sort of thing is based.
By Thomas Harding and Tom Coghlan for the Telegraph (thanks to all who sent this in):
Agents from MI6 entered secret talks with Taliban leaders despite Gordon Brown’s pledge that Britain would not negotiate with terrorists, The Daily Telegraph can disclose.
Officers from the Secret Intelligence Service staged discussions, known as “jirgas”, with senior insurgents on several occasions over the summer.
An intelligence source said: “The SIS officers were understood to have sought peace directly with the Taliban with them coming across as some sort of armed militia. The British would also provide ‘mentoring’ for the Taliban.”
The disclosure comes only a fortnight after the Prime Minister told the House of Commons: “We will not enter into any negotiations with these people.”
Opposition leaders said that Mr Brown had “some explaining to do”.