Senior Editor Paul Jay kicks off the fourth and final segment of his interview with Eric Margolis with the question of how to properly negotiate with the Taliban in Afghanistan. Eric outlines his belief that the negotiations must be real, not just a tactic to divide the Taliban and other resistance forces and thereby prolong the occupation. Real negotiations would require a ceasefire on US and NATO military operations accompanied by an offer of negotiation invitations to all parties in the country. Eric gives a brief explanation of the history and demography of the country in reference to Afghanistan’s traditional absence of central governance, and what he views as their wishes to continue with such an arrangement. For this reason Eric finds deep flaws in the efforts of the West to try and impose such centralized structures. Eric also lists the various activities being carried out by foreign occupiers in Afghanistan that he feels are ill-advised, from the bombing of villages to the decision to deal with the Karzai government.
Eric Margolis is an internationally syndicated columnist and renowned book author. He’s a veteran Korea-watcher who specializes in north Asian military/strategic affairs. He’s been all over the DMZ and produced his documentary there last year featuring a segment from Panmunjom on the DMZ. Two special areas of focus: 1. What would a war actually look like if one erupted? 2. The geopolitics of the region – the Koreas, Japan, China, Russia, the US. Eric was a regular columnist for Japan's Mainichi Shimbun and is a long-time member of the International Institute for Strategic Studies in London.More by Eric Margolis