Fallout from “the Deal”

We’ll be following up on some of our concerns about the notion of “opposition” in the Afghan government that seems to be part of the emerging discussion of the deal between Abdullah and Ghani over the next couple of days, but wanted to do a quick roundup of some of the pieces coming out about the current situation and the path forward.  Both the NYT and Washington Post quickly followed the situation with editorials that praised Kerry’s work and applauded the deal.  While we certainly fell this created some short term stability, it’s unclear still first of all how close Afghanistan really was to the brink of political collapse.  It also remains to be seen what the longer term impact of this deal will be on Afghan democracy.  In contrast with these pieces, Bloomberg has a much more balanced piece that is worth a read at call “Afghanistan Needs Some Local Control.”  In particular, it points to some of the concerns with Kerry’s second intervention in electoral politics in Afghanistan and the need for the Afghan government to be able to provide internal mediators as well.  As one Afghan friend told me “personally, when he arrived, I was sure  that John Kerry would solve the situation.  At the same time, this was very disappointing  for many Afghans including myself, since it showed that Afghans do not have the capacity to solve their own problem and need to turn to the US Secretary of State.”  It’s also time to start thinking about how the current crisis could actually be an opportunity to reform the Afghan government.  The Economist starts to do this, even if the tone may be a bit overly optimistic (see here).

3 thoughts on “Fallout from “the Deal”

    • Possible and I definitely respect Coll’s reporting. I have trouble envisioning what would have happened after the Northern Alliance occupied the Presidential Palace with NATO and American troops sitting next door. Seems like that would have been a real misstep.

      • I think he’s probably using slightly more dramatic language than appropriate to describe what happened. It’s possible, but for a claim like that you’d hope for more details.

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