Let Us Talk

July 20, 2008

Sunday: Obama Has Breakfast With US Troops; Will Meet With Afghanistan President


Obama, in Afghanistan as part of a congressional delegation, shared breakfast with US troops on Sunday and is expected to meet President Hamid Karzai later in the day.

It’s been reported that most likely President Karzai will discuss a string of Nato offensives that have resulted in civilian casualties with Obama.

“I think Karzai is going to make it clear that mistakes by Nato and the Americans are not acceptable. He says that each time there is a civilian casualty it just adds to the support for the Taliban,” a Kabul reporter said.

In the last few days, Karzai went to the scene of an incident where there were civilian casualties at a wedding party in the east of Afghanistan, to console survivors and give compensation from the government. I think civilian casualties will be on the agenda.”

Obama is expected to raise the issue of the quality of leadership in Afghanistan.

“Obama has been critical in the past of Karzai and the Afghan government. This is a government that many in the international community see as having too many corrupt elements to it. I think he will ask Karzai to do more to take control of the situation.”

  At the Bagram base, north of Kabul, military leaders on Saturday told Obama and the other senators travelling with him about efforts to combat Taliban forces and other fighters.

The congressional delegation then met more US soldiers at Jalalabad air field, as well as the governor of Nangahar province.





Obama has said that Afghanistan is the central front in the so-called “war on terror,” and he is expected to call for more US action to overthrow the Taliban and al-Qaeda.

Obama has said that if he wins the US presidency he will commit at least two more combat brigades to Afghanistan while reducing the number of US forces in Iraq.

If Obama is elected president and takes office in January 2009, then the Afghan elections will be one of his priorities because Karzai is facing elections in the next year.


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