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President Obama can't even organize a proper whitewash
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Topic - Haroun Mir
President Hamid Karzai received a resounding endorsement Saturday from a traditional national assembly to negotiate a security agreement that could keep a U.S. military presence in Afghanistan past 2014, when most international forces are to have left. The size of the force is subject to negotiations but a future deal could keep thousands of American troops here for years.
A botched NATO airstrike killed five Afghan soldiers after they were mistaken for insurgents early Wednesday, highlighting continued weak coordination between international troops and the local security forces they are striving to build.
"From the beginning we were pretty sure that the jirga was mainly a symbolic gathering of Afghans," said Haroun Mir, the director of the Afghanistan Center for Research and Policy Studies, a Kabul-based think tank. "This is a symbolic gathering — more political leverage for President Karzai to show to international community that he is still able to gather Afghans under one tent."