Steve, why so sleepy? I am in a Karzai-induced depression. Chris Fair has an excellent post over at ForeignPolicy.com that indicates that the Terry Jones Quran burning riots that killed peacekeepers in Mazar-e-Sharif could be considered the responsibility, in part, of our panel Hamid Karzai. Why? Because he was the one who took the event and played it up to distance himself from the Western folks who have been giving him billions of dollars. Fair raises the right question--why do we expend our lives and dollars if we are investing in this cruel joke of a leader? I guess the answer might be--what about the rest of Afghanistan? That is, the extremists who mobilized this mob and Karzai do not represent the entirely of the populace, and if we go, these guys will benefit but the populace will suffer through another nasty civil war.
But then the choice is to support the existing government. There is no right answer, but I am starting to think that if we do not see some dramatic improvements this summer (winning the war, rather than not losing it), then the time has come to cut our losses and let Karzai fester in his own stew. He might think he is being clever, but I don't expect to last very long after we leave. Yes, this would have bad implications for the neighborhood, but I am not sure we can duck those anyway.
So, that is why I am depressed, and when I am depressed, I get sleepy and post less.
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