Perhaps he already knew it was futile, but wanted to buy time for his big pullout of the region, and the ‘bumps in the road” are just that.
I have already noted last year that negotiations with the Taliban are impossible, now the Obama admin. finally admits the blatantly obvious. It’s a no go. It’s long been my opinion that, either you carpet bomb them back into 7th century (I know, they’re already there, but you get the gist of it), with the promise of more of the same in the future if they resort to old habits, or leave.