This is spectacular:
The Foreign Minister of Uzbekistan, a country that is emerging as a linchpin of United States policy in Central Asia, has devised a new proposal aimed at ending the war in Afghanistan and will present it to the United Nations on Tuesday.
In an interview this week, the Foreign Minister, Abdulaziz Kamilov, said his Government wants to forge a coalition in Kabul that would include the fundamentalist Islamic Taliban movement but not allow it to impose policies opposed by other factions.
”Resistance to the Taliban is not only military but also in the hearts of the Afghan people,” Mr. Kamilov said. ”It is not possible for Afghanistan to be drawn back into the Middle Ages.”
Mr. Kamilov said that in his speech to the United Nations General Assembly in New York he would propose the establishment of a ”contact group” to press for a new coalition in Kabul. Its members would include all countries bordering on Afghanistan, all major factions in the country, and perhaps some outside powers including the United States.
Anyway, so that was in 1997. It’s something to keep in mind when we hear about basically the exact same thing happening right now. It could possibly work this time, but I see no evidence that it actually will, or that conditions have changed noticeably.