Foreign Policy Blogs

Karzai Rebuffs General Petraeus' Apology Over Deadly Misidentification of 9 Boys

President Hamid Karzai’ has rebuffed General Petraeus’ face to face personal apology for the misidentification of nine boys for wanted insurgents, and the subsequent slaughter that followed.

President Karzai declared that “the people of Afghanistan are tired of these incidents and excuses, and condemnations cannot relieve their pain….I am asking you on behalf of the people of Afghanistan that there be no repetition of this incident.”

Mr. Karzai is seldom so forthright, so much in the right, as he has been on this occasion; his populism has had the far too costly fortune of coinciding with the deep and righteous anger and indignation felt by people throughout the Kunar Province, the area of Pakistan where those nine biys were killed by helicopter fire.

It remains to see though whether Mr. Karzai will be outflanked by the people’s anger.  No doubt he will come around to toeing the NATO line when conditions and opportunities permit. But until then, it is possible that in speaking to Afghan anger on this tragedy he might go too far, incautious as he is, and stoke the public’s ire beyond the the level convenient for the local politics of the day .  He will then have inflamed the cause of his own downfall in the eyes of the western diplomatic communities that have long help keep Afghanistan from slipping into outright chaos.

 

Author

Faheem Haider

Faheem Haider is a political analyst, writer and artist. He holds advanced research degrees in political economy, political theory and the political economy of development from the London School of Economics and Political Science and New York University. He also studied political psychology at Columbia University. During long stints away from his beloved Washington Square Park, he studied peace and conflict resolution and French history and European politics at the American University in Washington DC and the University of Paris, respectively.

Faheem has research expertise in democratic theory and the political economy of democracy in South Asia. In whatever time he has to spare, Faheem paints, writes, and edits his own blog on the photographic image and its relationship to the political narrative of fascist, liberal and progressivist art.

That work and associated writing can be found at the following link: http://blackandwhiteandthings.wordpress.com

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