At the same time, the United States will immediately and substantially reinforce the Taliban by seeking the release of 5,000 Taliban prisoners by March 20. Even worse, the United States further agreed to a goal of “releasing all remaining prisoners over the course of the subsequent three months.” It will do this at the same time that it commits to the “goal” of removing sanctions from members of the Taliban that include travel bans, asset freezes, and an arms embargo.
The combination of the planned American retreat and the planned prisoner release would represent a substantial change in the balance of forces in Afghanistan. This would come without any agreement by the Taliban to cease hostilities against our allies.
At this point, the deal looks worse than a simple withdrawal. America can leave all on its own without also agreeing to seek the release of Taliban prisoners. It can leave all on its own without promising to ease sanctions. So why agree to the additional concessions?
America is making these concrete concessions in exchange for unenforceable promises from an untrustworthy enemy.