Karzai was emotionally erratic not on policy: Journalist
WASHINGTON (Pajhwok): Former Afghan president Hamid Karzai was frustrated with American policies particularly after the Obama administration coming into power, an American journalist who spent three years in Kabul said Monday.
“I saw his journey from being a poppet president to someone who tried to assert his own authority,” said Joshua Partlow, the former Kabul bureau of chief of The Washington Post told a Washington audience on the occasion of the release of his book “A Kingdom of their own: The family Karzai and the Afghan disaster.”
Partlow, is now correspondent of The Washington Post in Mexico. “He (Karzai) was erratic emotionally, but he was not erratic on policy.”
The journalist believed the US should focus more on Pakistan where most of the terrorists were based. He did not like the fact that Afghans were held in US prisons not Afghan prisons.
Partlow during his conversation at the Woodrow Wilson Center, a top American think-tank, Karzai had a nationalism and had a genuine sensitivity to the problems of the people of Afghanistan.
During this period he had become a chief critic of the Afghan war at a time when the US had increased its troop presence in the country, he said of the former president. “This family was a way to understand and get an insight into the Afghan war,” he said, giving reasons for writing a book on the family of the former Afghan president.
“This is the longest war in US history,” said Michael Kugelman, senior associate for South Asia at Wilson Center. “It shows no sign of ending very soon. There are very troubling things happening in Afghanistan now,” he added.
Responding to questions, Partlow said Karzai was full of contradictions. He was part of a family that had made a lot of money from the war.
“It is very possible to see him in political role in Afghanistan, if this (unity) government falls apart. He has clearly not left the political scene,” Partlow said in response to a question, adding that Karzai was the key figure outside the government. “He is using that influence to shape the future of the country the way he wants.”
Partlow said the government now appeared to be more fragile and the Taliban now in control of more areas.
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