Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Obama's Dog and Pony Show in DC: Public Diplomacy parties on, but outside the halls . . .

The NY Times reports on the "glittering" reception on tap for Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai this evening. The real "money quotes" - from Brian Katulis - appear toward the bottom:
“the fundamental issues remain the same. We have not articulated what our endgame in Afghanistan is. What exactly are we asking Karzai to do?”
This kind of dog-and-pony show, IMO, smacks of desperation.  Obama's people have no handle on what's happening in Afghanistan, on how the country really works (see this report from yesterday's WaPo about how the US military there blundered into a warring tribes mess); the Afghan police remain infested with corruption - and the Obama "Surge" is running out of time, if he indeed intends on sticking to his July 2011 start-departure timetable.

Meanwhile, the trust gap between the US and Pakistan widens . . . and the US continues to try to solve its problems there and in Afghanistan by sending drones to blow away "militants."

And the  Iraq that the US left confused, trashed, and impoverished, with millions of its people displaced, comes ever closer to a new tipping point into violence.

Meanwhile, this evening Afghan ministers will party on with US generals and officials, feasting on the finest champagne and caviar, even as the Iraqis, Afghans, and Pakistanis whose lives have been trashed by the effects of the US's overseas adventures will be struggling to secure food and shelter.

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