Karzai Wishes he had Joined Taliban

Rajiv Chandrasekaran of WaPo gets the scoop. His sources say that at a high level meeting in October, Gen. David Petraeus and Ambassador Karl Eickenberry pressed President Hamid Karzai of Afghanistan to reconsider his decision to toss private security firms out of his country. Karzai exploded, called the US one of three enemies faced by Afghanistan, and added, “If I had to choose sides today, I’d choose the Taliban…” before storming out of the room.

Karzai has repeatedly threatened to join the Taliban, and did so last April to visiting US Congressmen (who were quite astonished at the performance).

Karzai’s unreliability is especially deadly if the US is to fight a counter-insurgency campaign, since it requires a stable, well-liked and dependable local partner to succeed.

The Afghan ministry of the Interior admitted Monday that 8 southern districts in the Pashtun region of the country were not controlled by the central government, and said that he was not sure who did control them.

Meanwhile, the country’s constitutional crisis continued to unfold. 100 newly elected parliamentarians called on Karzai to inaugurate parliament on Dec. 18. The petitioners includied an outsized contingent of Hazara Shiites (some of whom now are now the only representation some Pashtuns have).

16 Responses

  1. The irony is the US thinks he unreliable and unstable, but the incredible pressures he himself is subjected to (the guilty conscience of a puppet) can explain most of his outbursts. In that discussion of private security firms, he must be angry at his powerlessness vis-a-vis a criminal and murderous mercenary army that his government has to rely on as well as financially support. He has also had to talk to and apologize to countless people for NATO actions, seeing probably first hand the hideous and bloody mess left by bombs and drone strikes. I’m sure he has PTSD as well.

  2. So nice that my nephew gets to return for a second tour. We need to GTF out of there, immediately.

  3. “Not reliable”—–I have to wonder if a source of Karzai’s and other Afghans’ frustration is that Afghan (and Central Asian) methods of securing personal give and take with factional leaders is such a different method from the US perceptions and methods. Perhaps he sees that if he were with the Taliban, he could gain more personal power than being restricted by American perceptions.

    Bob Spencer

  4. Check out the article about Richard Holbrooke at Talking Points Memo: his family said that his last words, before being wheeled into surgery, were:

    “You’ve got to stop this war in Afghanistan.”

  5. Perhaps it’s time we listened to Holbrooke’s last words: Time to get out of Afghanistan.

    Time to recognize that we ARE the enemy. That Karzai understands that.

  6. President Obama has been waging a completely crazy and immoral war in Afghanistan and Pakistan (Yemen too), and I will never support this President again unless we leave Afghanistan completely and immediately.

  7. Perhaps we should make it clear to Karzai that we will arm the non-Pashtuns to the teeth if he takes any steps to siding with the Taliban. Rearm the Norther Alliance, the Hazaris, and the rest with modern weapons, train them in their use, and turn them loose on the Pashtuns.

    • We — and the Russians before us — have already done that “arm the Northern Alliance” thing. This explains why the Soviet Empire no longer exists and why the Pashtun-based Taliban control 80% of Afghanistan while the US-armed-and-backed Northern Alliance can hardly claim “control” of Kabul. By all means, let the United States continue doing what has so spectacularly failed in the past. What else can one expect from American foreign policy but insanity?

    • They used to say Northern Alliance fight like heroes, then later they say heroes fight like Northern Alliance. Long Live General Masoud. Karzai thinks Ahmad Shah Massoud is not there anymore. Nobody will fight against his blood brothers (Taliban). This time the war is going to be about the revenge not freedom.

      This is our Holy War. And no Taliban and other fanatics thugs will survive unscathed. Cant let a woman to be rape or a man to be hang on a tree anymore. Time to pay back what our motherland owed us.

  8. F ‘em. Let’s just LEAVE and be done with those gigantic wastes of US Tax Dollars.

  9. In rereading your column, I think that you meant that the Hazaras represent Pashtuns in Parliament by virtue of the Hazaras’ successful campaigns in Pashtun majority districts. This is now clear. Thanks,

    Michael

  10. With “our man in Kabul,” COIN is a lost cause in Afghanistan. If we had a draft we’d have been out of there long ago. As it is the country seems to be able to stand the killed and maimed statistics. But he cost of years and years of unsuccessful COIN will finallly force us to withdraw. Why not honor Holbrook and do it now?

  11. Often these stories /talk backs seem to reflect a sentiment pretty close to ‘damn those ungrateful bastards” . Almost as though the US/Nato was actually invited there in the first place- weird that the locals would be so ungrateful for the death and destruction delivered to their very doorstep.

  12. There is almost three years left for Karzai. He is on his best trying to share power with Taliban because there is no way that his Popalzai tribe survives after he step out from the office. Taliban gonna genocide them all after Karzai term of presidency is over. Karzai has no any respect in West to seek asylum and start a new life in there. He has no any option in Afghanistan too expect make a deal with Taliban to allow him live in the country after 2014.

    Gaius Baltar, if US had accepted this request early in the 2001 today America wouldnt lost its money and troops.

    The Northern Alliances fighters are on the move. They are taking their weapons out of mothballs. Karzai possibly going to switch side if he couldn’t make this peace deal.

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