President Trump was correct in canceling planned peace talks with the Taliban in Afghanistan, Republican Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., said Monday.
Appearing on “America’s Newsroom,” the Senate Foreign Relations Committee member said that in addition to showing “backbone,” the president also exhibited the “right instincts and right judgment.
“He is willing to talk to anybody,” Barrasso said. “He’s also willing to walk away from a bad deal and a deal with the Taliban would’ve been a bad deal here.”
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo blamed a terror attack by the Taliban last Thursday for the cancelation of the planned talks at Camp David this weekend that the administration had hoped would lead to a peace agreement.
TRUMP SAYS TALKS WITH TALIBAN ARE “DEAD,’ AFTER CANCELING SECRET CAMP DAVID SUMMIT
On “Fox News Sunday” host Chris Wallace asked Pompeo, “Who thought it was a good idea for the President of the United States to meet with Taliban leaders, who have the blood of thousands of Americans on their hands, just three days before 9/11?”
Pompeo said that they were aware of the history of Camp David and that they “reflected on that as we were thinking about how to deliver for the American people.”
“And so, as we considered the right path forward, you talked about an agreement in principle, I think that’s true. We weren’t complete,” Pompeo admitted.
Another Wyoming Republican, Liz Cheney, decried any potential future meeting for the Taliban at Camp David.
PEACE TALKS WITH AFGHANS, TALIBAN CALLED OFF AFTER TRUMP CANCELS SECRET MEETING
She wrote on Twitter: “Camp David is where America’s leaders met to plan our response after al Qaeda, supported by the Taliban, killed 3000 Americans on 9/11. No member of the Taliban should set foot there. Ever. The Taliban still harbors al Qaeda. The President is right to end the talks.”
Both the Taliban and administration officials have left the door open to a resumption of negotiations, but the death of an American soldier in the attack — Sergeant First Class Elis Barreto Ortiz — was the 16th this year and one of many since talks began almost a year ago.
Additionally, Taliban negotiators claimed Sunday that they had agreed to come to the United States only after a deal was announced and solely to meet with the American side and not the Afghani government.
Ahead of a rally in North Carolina on Monday night, Trump told reporters the only reason he canceled the meeting was because the Taliban had killed Americans.
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“They’re dead. As far as I am concerned, they are dead,” he said.
On “America’s Newsroom,” Barrasso commented: “The Taliban was continuing to work by terrorizing the talks. That is not a way to get a peace agreement.
“But, he’s a president of action — he wants to get things done. So, he’s willing to talk. He leads through action: looking for results, looking for solutions.”