Neither, but the fact is that unless we want to be in Afghanistan forever, we must talk to the Taliban. Keep in mind that 1. 9/11 was the act of Al Queda not the Taliban 2. Nobody has been able to conquer Afghanistan largely because of the nature of the tribal armies like those that the Taliban is rooted in. If we want to wind down the war in Afghanistan we have to be looking to make a more moderate Taliban rather than continuing our current policy of trying to annihilate them.
The Taliban is still alive and kicking because it has genuine support among Afghans. The Taliban is rooted in Afghan society regardless of whether we agree with all of their views. What right do foreigners have to kill them for their politics or identity? Isn’t that political persecution? Imagine if day China decided to invade the US to kill or capture racists and “help” non-racist Americans and after 18years the debate was about whether it was shameful to negotiate with those racists?
Also, people should consider the Taliban’s perspective. Even though it did not carry out 9/11,America invaded them, killed and imprisoned many, and slandered them for decades. Should they also reject peace with America until the American government is toppled, America becomes a peaceful nation, the perpetrators of the invasion of Afghanistan are brought to justice? How would a Talib who has been jailed by the Americans feel? Would he associate Americans with freedom? Is freedom equal to jail? Is democracy equal to being killed and hinted for belonging to the Taliban political movement? Is it wrong to resist foreign invasion?
Al Qaida carried out 9/11 in secrecy (which is expected for such an operation). Taliban did not allow or condone Al Qaida to do that. When the US demanded that Taliban hand over bin Laden, it didn’t have sufficient evidence, so Taliban had no obligation to hand him over. Oh and Yaliban Afghanistan has no extradition treaty with the US at the time. As bad as 9/11 was, the it does not justify attacking innocent bystanders. The argument that attacking the Taliban is ok because they were sheltering Al Qaida is the same as bin Laden’s argument that killing American civilians is ok because they voted for their government whose policies are hurting people in the Middle East.