It’s easy to view this as another sign of Karza’s paranoia. Karzai’s supposed mental instability is an article of faith inside the corridors of Obama Inc, which has no doubt made him even more paranoid.
But you have to be paranoid to survive in Afghanistan.
And Karzai isn’t as nutty as he seems. Once Obama announced a deadline, Karzai had no choice but to come out as Anti-American. That is largely why insider attacks by Afghan forces have been stepped up. The placeholder government is trying to show that it can out-Taliban the Taliban.
Now Karzai is trying to tie the Taliban to Obama. It sounds crazy, but it’s done all the time in the Muslim world where it’s widely believed that Osama bin Laden was a CIA agent and that every leader they don’t like works for America. Obvious ideological incompatibility is not a handicap in a society based around conspiracy theories.
Hagel’s visit to Afghanistan was supposed to show off the new move toward a transition, but Karzai wasn’t going to let Obama Inc. have an easy score like that.
Afghan President Hamid Karzai on Sunday accused the Taliban and the U.S. of working in concert to convince Afghans that violence will worsen if most foreign troops leave
“The explosions in Kabul and Khost yesterday showed that they are at the service of America and at the service of this phrase: 2014. They are trying to frighten us into thinking that if the foreigners are not in Afghanistan, we would be facing these sorts of incidents,” he said during a nationally televised speech about the state of Afghan women.
Karzai offered no proof of coordination, but said the Taliban and the United States were in “daily negotiations” in various foreign countries and noted that the United States has said that it no longer considers the insurgent group its enemy.
Karzai said he did not believe the Taliban’s claim that they launched Saturday’s attacks to show they are still a potent force fighting the United States. “Yesterday’s explosions, which the Taliban claimed, show that in reality they are saying they want the presence of foreigners in Afghanistan,” Karzai said.
The Karzai government’s latest comments and actions come as it negotiates a pact with the U.S. for the long-term presence of American forces in Afghanistan and just days after an agreement to transfer the U.S. prison outside of Kabul to Afghan authority fell through. They also came during U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel’s first visit to Afghanistan since becoming the Pentagon chief.
Karzai said in his speech that any foreign powers that want to keep troops in Afghanistan need to do so under conditions set forward by Afghanistan.
“We will tell them where we need them, and under which conditions. They must respect our laws. They must respect the national sovereignty of our country and must respect all our customs,” Karzai said.
The complicated game here is that Karzai wants US forces there, but has to act as if he doesn’t, and as if he’s the one bossing them around and protecting Afghans from the United States, rather than being an American puppet. And he’s trying to shift responsibility for their ongoing presence over to the Taliban so that the Taliban attacks are keeping the United States in Afghanistan. Why? Because the Taliban want America there.
There is some truth to that. The Taliban are getting sizable infusions of cash and arms to fight America. Those payments would drop significantly without Americans to kill.
Karzai and the Taliban both need America to stay. Karzai needs American money to steal and American power to keep the Taliban at bay. The Taliban need American targets. Both pretend they want the war to end, but neither do.