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Why is America Failing in Afghanistan?

- DR. Abdul-Qayum Mohmand

Analysis of “CIA World Factbook” (1981-2012): Dimensions of anti-Pashtun Conspirac

Afghan Fury at Planned Pakistan Pact
What Happens When the U.S. Leaves Afghanistan?
Trying to leave Afghanistan proves to be as troublesome as being there: A Closer Look
Afghanistan: “It’s Just Damage Limitation Now”
Zero Dark Thirty Review-Analysis; Eleven Instances of Disinformation
Why is America Failing in Afghanistan?
 
 
 
US forces in Afghanistan nearly destroyed vital airfield
We Are Those Two Afghan Children, Killed by NATO While Tending Their Cattle
Former Islamist Warlord Vies for Afghan Presidency
Pakistan releases top Afghan Taliban prisoner in effort to boost peace process
Losing the War in Afghanistan
Obama’s troop increase for Afghan war was misdirected
Afghan security vacuum feared along "gateway to Kabul"
Objections to U.S. Troops Intensify in Afghanistan
The Great Afghan corruption scam
War zone killing: Vets feel 'alone' in their guilt
Was Osama for Real? And Was He Killed in 2001?
Afghanistan withdrawal: The risks of retreat
The Real Reason the US Invaded Afghanistan
The Definition of a Quagmire
Huge Uncertainty' in Afghanistan
Controversial ID Cards Expose Ethnic Divisions In Afghanistan
Afghanistan: The Final Curtain Call for NATO?
Afghanistan After 9/11: A Mission Unaccomplished
Why Should Taliban and Other Insurgents Refrain from Negotiation With the US & NATO? By: Dr Mohammed Daud Miraki, MA, MA, Ph

Exclusive: Karzai family looks to extend boss rule in Afghanistan.

Intrigue in Karzai Family as an Afghan Era Closes
For Afghans, Two Outrages, Two Different Reactions
Double blow to west’s Afghan strategy
Does the Taliban need a diplomatic voice?
Afghanistan: Lessons in War and Peace-building for US
Afghan women opposed by former allies
Q+A - Haqqani: From White House guest to staunch U.S. enemy
Haqqanis: Growth of a militant network -BBC
Afghanistan shelves plans for ambassador accused of fraud
Afghan nominated as ambassador to Britain was accused in US of fraud
U.S. deal with Taliban breaks down
The Loneliness of the Afghan President: Karzai on His Own

NATO's Third Alternative in Afghanistan

On the Road: Interview with Commander Abdul Haq:- The Tragedy of Abdul Haq
When the Lion Roared: How Abdul Haq Almost Saved Afghanistan
AFGHAN WARRIOR: THE LIFE & DEATH OF ABDUL HAQ
Pakistan’s ISI: Undermining Afghan self-determination since 1948
Mineral Wealth of Afghanistan, Military Occupation, Corruption and the Rights of the Afghan People
M. Siddieq Noorzoy
Why Isn’t the UN Investigating and Prosecuting the U.S. and NATO for War Crimes Committed in Afghanistan?
Corruption and Warlordism:
Abdul Basir Stanikzai
In Afghanistan, U.S. contracts aren’t crystal balls, but they come close
The great Afghan carve-up
Anatomy of an Afghan war tragedy
Terry Jones Actually Burns a Qur’an and No One Notices
Q+A-Are Afghan forces ready to take over security?
Guantánamo Bay files rewrite the story of Osama bin Laden's Tora Bora escape
Winning Afghan hearts, minds with explosives
Afghanistan’s Mercenaries
KABUL’S HORIZONS
Who is winning Afghanistan war? U.S. officials increasingly disagree
Afghanistan: The Trouble With The Transition
From the Archives: In Quest of a ‘Greater Tajikistan’
The 1980s mujahideen, the Taliban and the shifting idea of jihad
Afghanistan's Karzai complains about interference
Karzai, US ambassador at odds over private security

Karzai Tells Washington Post U.S. Should Reduce Afghan Operation Intensity

Excerpts from Afghan President Hamid Karzai's interview with The Washington Post
What the Afghans Want
New US approach to Afghanistan insurgency: Vindication for Pakistan?
Putting Some Fight Into Our Friends
Afghans 'abused at secret prison
Why We Won’t Leave Afghanistan or Iraq
Indo-Pakistan proxy war heats up in Afghanistan
Canada’s elite commandos and the invasion of Afghanistan
U.S. retreat from Afghan valley marks recognition of blunder
Five myths about the war in Afghanistan
Marine who resigned over ‘conscience’ speaks at MU
The Afghan media may have grown since Taliban rule ended, but not so press freedoms
Mystery holes and angry ants: another Afghan day
Kabul Bank's Sherkhan Farnood feeds crony capitalism in Afghanistan
Marjah War
Operation Moshtarak: Which way the war in Afghanistan?
Q&A: Why Marjah, why now?
In Jalalabad, hope is fading
Seeking reconciliation, US units meet remote Afghanistan tribes
Once Again, Get the Hell Out! "Ending the War in Afghanistan"
Blackwater Kept a Prostitute on the Payroll in Afghanistan; Fraudulently Billed American Tax Payers
Wild West Motif Lightens US Mood at Afghan Bas
In southern Afghanistan, even the small gains get noticed
 Afghanistan war: US tries to undercut Taliban at tribal level
 Soviet lessons from Afghanistan
Are actions of 'super-tribe' an Afghan tipping point
Taliban: Terrorist or not? Not always easy to say
Q&A: Who else could help in Afghanistan?
Vietnam Replay on Afghan 'Defectors'
Washington's Refusal to Talk about Drone Strikes in Pakistan Meets Growing Opposition
Afghanistan summit: Why is the US backing talks with the Taliban?
Taliban's leadership council runs Afghan war from Pakistan
Why buy the Taliban?
2 Afghanistan conferences: No solutions
An Alternative to Endless War - Negotiating an Afghan Agreement?
Do the Taliban represent the Pashtuns?
Afghanistan asks ex-presidential contender to tackle corruption

Tehran Sets Conditions For Attending London Conference On Afghanista

Pakistan says reaches out to Afghan Taliban
Taking It to the Taliban
The Afghan Taliban's top leaders
How significant is Mullah Baradar's arrest?
Secret Joint Raid Captures Taliban’s Top Commander
What's the Quetta Shura Taliban and why does it matter?
What's behind latest Taliban attack on Kabul? See Images of the Attack By WSJ

Pakistan Version of Islam and Taliban ?????
Lahore fashion week takes on Talibanization in Pakistan

Loyalties of Those Killed in Afghan Raid Remain Unclear

After Attack, Afghans Question Motives or See Conspiracies
Gates: Taliban part of Afghan ‘political fabric’

IG: Afghan power-plant project ill-conceived, mismanaged

Taliban intensifies Afghan PR campaign

Taliban Overhaul Their Image in Bid to Win Allies
Karzai plans to woo Taliban with 'land, work and pensions'
Peace scheme mooted for Taliban
Bombs and baksheesh
But By All Means, Continue the Happy Talk on the Afghanistan War
Karzai Closing in on Taliban Reconciliation Plan
Last Exit Kabul
How To Get Out Without Forsaking Afghanistan's Stability
Afghan Recovery Report: Taleban Buying Guns From Former Warlords

'Jesus Guns': Two More Countries Rethink Using Weapons with Secret Bible References

Gun bible quotes 'inappropriate'
Text of Joint declaration of Afghanistan-Iran-Pakistan trilateral meeting
Garmsir Protest Shows Taleban Reach
Rugged North Waziristan harbors US enemies
The Arrogance of Empire, Detailed ( The Untold Story of Afghanistan )
Appointment of Afghan counter narcotics chief dismays British officials
In Afghanistan attack, CIA fell victim to series of miscalculations about informant
Rebuilding Afghanistan: Will government take hold in this post-Taliban town?
Rare bird discovered in Afghan mountains
Blackwater, now called Xe, in running for work in Afghanistan despite legal woes
How Soviet troops stormed Kabul palace
Afghan children 'die in fighting'
Afghanistan war: Russian vets look back on their experience
U.N. Officials Say American Offered Plan to Replace Karzai 
Learning From the Soviets
U.S. faults Afghan corruption body's independence
Intensify fight against corruption, says Afghan meeting
Afghan ministers cleared of charges
Drone aircraft in a stepped-up war in Afghanistan and Pakistan
U.S. Air Force Confirms 'Beast of Kandahar' Secret Stealth Drone Plane
Kissinger's fantasy is Obama's realit
Taliban shadow officials offer concrete alternative
Talking with the Taliban
20. Ashraf Ghani and Clare Lockhart
'Yes, there was torture and people were certainly beaten': Afghan warden
Why we should leave Afghanistan
US pours millions into anti-Taliban militias in Afghanistan
Pakistan to US: Don't surge in Afghanistan, talk to Taliban
A Plan C for Afghanistan
Finding decent cabinet is Karzai's big challenge
A way to get around Karzai in Afghanistan
Corruption fight boosted by 'Afghan FBI'
US demands Afghan 'bribery court'
Afghanistan plans court for corrupt ministers
The man leading Afghanistan's anti-corruption fight
Win hearts and minds in Afghanistan to win the war
Gates blocks abuse photos release
New U.S. Afghan prison unveiled, rights groups wary
War in Afghanistan: Not in our name
How the US Funds the Taliban
Afghan gov't says UN representative out of line
Cabinet of Warlords
Afghanistan and the lessons of history
Clinton says Karzai ‘must do better’
Recognizing the Limits of American Power in Afghanistan
After Afghanistan election, governors seek distance from 'illegal' Karzai
Karzai was hellbent on victory. Afghans will pay the price
Matthew Hoh: Please refute what I'm saying, we are stuck in the Afghan civil war
As US looks for exit in Afghanistan, China digs in
America's Top Diplomat Tells 'Nightline': 'Not Every Taliban Is al Qaeda'
Obama Can’t Make Russian Mistake in Afghanistan
10 Steps to Victory in Afghanistan
Will Obama change Afghan strategy?
Does the U.S. still have a vital interest in Afghanistan?
Pashtuns and Pakistani
The Afghan '80s are back
Pashtun peace prophet goes global
Afghan Road Builder's Dream Thwarted by Violence
A white elephant in Kabul
The Afghan Runoff: Will It Be a No-Show Election?

Ashraf Ghani- Afghanistan's Disputed Election Complicates U.S. Strategy

On Assignment: Into the Maw at Marja

Patrick Witty & Tyler Hicks
The New York Times


Afghanistan Cross Road CNN


The last frontier


Bruce Richardson
 

Articles

CIA: Buying peace in Afghanistan?

With Bags of Cash, C.I.A. Seeks Influence in Afghanistan
CIA Ghost Money: Karzai Confirms U.S. Gives Funds To Afghan National Security Team
What the CIA’s cash has bought for Afghanistan

Khalilzad: A Satan Whispering in the Hearts of Men
The Afghan trust deficitt
Will We Learn Anything from Afghanistan? Part 1
Getting Out of Afghanistan: Part 2
William R. Polk
General’s Defense on Afghan Scandal Ducks Key Evidence
Afghans want Taliban peace talks
Bombing Weddings in Afghanistan: It Couldn't Happen Here, It Does Happen There
Hekmatyar's never-ending Afghan war
Covert American Aid to the Afghan Resistance; A Top-Secret U.S. Foreign Policy Plot to Induce and Effect Soviet Military Intervention
Afghan brain drain fears as Karzai urges education reforms

US considers launching joint US-Afghan raids in Pakistan to hunt down militant groups

Real security in Afghanistan depends on people's basic needs being met
Intractable Afghan Graft Hampering U.S. Strategy
Former Taliban Officials Say U.S. Talks Started
Taliban ready for talks with US, not Karzai government
Emboldened Taliban Try to Sell Softer Image
Leaked NATO Report Shows Pakistan Support For Taliban
Insight: Few options for Afghan, U.S. leaders after Kandahar massacre
Presenter: Secretary of Defense Leon E. Panetta and Daoud Sultanzoy, Tolo Television
NATO’s measured exit plan in Afghanistan faces new obstacles
BFP Exclusive: Karzai Clan Attorney Threatens US Journalist, Uses Intimidation Tactics
Afghanistan Chronicles
Arduous path to Afghan 'end-game'
Fear in the classrooms: is the Taliban poisoning Afghanistan's schoolgirls?
A comment on the recent events of student poisoning in Afghanistan
Rape Case, in Public, Cites Abuse by Armed Groups in Afghanistan
Afghanistan’s Peace Talks Hit Brick Wall
THE ANATOMY OF US’S DEFEAT IN AFGHANISTAN
VOICES OF EMPIRE: FROM CIA’s CULTURAL GREAT GAME TO GLOBAL GREAT GAME TODAY
WHITE PAPER FOR THE PERMANENT PEACE IN AFGHANISTAN
King Karzai
A Federal System of Government is Not Suitable for Afghanistan
CHINA AMO DARYA OIL DEAL
Analysis: Where Afghan humanitarianism ends and development begins
U.S. Envoy: Kabulbank Was 'Vast Looting Scheme'
Speaking with the enemy: how US commanders fight the Taliban during the day and dine with them at night
Afghanistan: Operation Enduring Musery
How to Win Peace in Afghanistan
For Karzai, Stumbles On Road To Election
Cruel human toll of fight to win Afghan peace
Criticism of Afghan War Is on the Rise in Britain
Troops 'fighting for UK's future'
Operation in Taliban hotbed a test for revamped U.S. strategy
Covering Crucial Afghanistan Operation
Afghans still skeptical about Obama
US Defence Department struggling with public release of report on bombing in Afghanistan
Afghanistan on the Edge
Q+A: Who are the Pakistani Taliban insurgents?
Afghanistan Past & Present
Bombs for Pashtoons and Dollars for Punjab
Help! I'm being outgunned on K Street!
ANGELS CHASING DEMONS: “Jesus Killed Mohammad”!
U.S. tested 2 Afghan scenarios in war game
America's Top Diplomat Tells 'Nightline': 'Not Every Taliban Is al Qaeda'
Obama hearing range of views on Afghanistan
What Do Afghans Want? Withdrawal - But Not Too Fast - and A Negotiated Peace
Will Obama change Afghan strategy?
What Do Afghans Want? Withdrawal - But Not Too Fast - and A Negotiated Peace
Afghans tricked into U.S. trip, detained
In the Afghan War, Aim for the Middle
Obama pulled two ways in Afghanistan
Obama Can’t Make Russian Mistake in Afghanistan
10 Steps to Victory in Afghanistan
Gates: Mistake to set time line for Afghan withdrawal
Afghans question what democracy has done for them
High stakes in Afghan vote recount
Two Perspectives On Resolving The Afghan Postelection Crisis
Does the U.S. still have a vital interest in Afghanistan?
Pashtuns and Pakistanis
The Afghan '80s are back
How to Lose in Afghanistan
US in Afghanistan proposes revamped strategy
US 'needs fresh Afghan strategy'
US looks to Vietnam for Afghan tips
Lessons from Vietnam on Afghanistan
Afghan Pres. Skips Country's 1st TV Debate
A proud moment for Afghanistan
Rival to Karzai Gains Strength in Afghan Presidential Election
Afghan presidential candidate withdraws in Karzai's favor
America and international law
Hamid Karzai pulls out of historic TV debate just hours before broadcast
Karzai says no to first Afghanpresidential debate
Afghan election: Can Karzai's rivals close the gap?
Karzai opponents hope to beat him in second round
Afghanistan's Election Challenges
For Karzai, Stumbles On Road To Election
Pentagon Seeks to Overhaul Prisons in Afghanistan
Cruel human toll of fight to win Afghan peace
Karzai’s gimmick
Well-known traffickers set free ahead of election
US president sets Afghan target
U.S. Inaction Seen After Taliban P.O.W.’s Died
Why the Pentagon Axed Its Afghanistan Warlord
Earn our trust or go, Afghans tell GIs
The Irresistible Illusion
Running Out Of Options, Afghans Pay For an Exit
We've lost sight of our goal in Afghanistan
$2,000 for a dead Afghan Child, $100,000 for Any American Who Died Killing it
The strategy is sound – but success is not assured
Operation in Taliban hotbed a test for revamped U.S. strategy
Covering Crucial Afghanistan Operation
Pentagon Seeks to Overhaul Prisons in Afghanistan
Echoes of Vietnam
A Response To General Dostum
Obama orders probe of killings in Afghanistan
Obama admin: No grounds to probe Afghan war crimes
US president sets Afghan target
U.S. Inaction Seen After Taliban P.O.W.’s Died
Afghanistan's Election Challenges
The Irresistible Illusion
Earn our trust or go, Afghans tell GIs
Running Out Of Options, Afghans Pay For an Exit

We've lost sight of our goal in Afghanistan

The strategy is sound – but success is not assured
Stakes High in Afghanistan Ahead of August Elections
$2,000 for a dead Afghan Child, $100,000 for Any American Who Died Killing it
Ex-detainees allege Bagram abuse
Petraeus Is a Failure -- Why Do We Pretend He's Been a Success?
Fierce Battles and High Casualties on the Frontlines of Afghanistan
End the Illegal, Immoral and Wasted War in Afghanistan, says BNP Defence Spokesman
Outside View: Four revolutions
Pakistan's Plans for New Fight Stir Concern
France: liberty, equality, and fraternity – but no burqas
 

 

 

 

 

Echoes of Vietnam

Even the Coalition commanders in Afghanistan wonder if they can win the war
Will history repeat itself in Afghanistan?

British military intervention in Afghanistan has a chequered history, making it easy to conclude that British forces will fail again


 

Corruption fight boosted by 'Afghan FBI'
Source: The Independent By: Julius Cavendish  

Kabul: A new anti-corruption squad trained by British and American law enforcement agents will investigate high-level Afghans implicated in their country's vast criminal circles, Afghanistan's Interior Minister announced yesterday.

Nicknamed the "Afghan FBI", the task force will also investigate kidnapping and organised crime.
The UK's Serious Organised Crime Agency (Soca) along with the US Federal Bureau of Investigation have already begun mentoring the new body, which includes Afghan police, prosecutors and judges who must undergo polygraph tests as part of their training and vetting. Nato will provide the unit with intelligence and, officials in Kabul hope, use its clout to stop Afghan government officials derailing cases.

The move is part of a broader Western effort to encourage good governance in Kabul. Many Afghans blame institutionalised corruption for their country's deepening insurgency, and President Hamid Karzai is under intense international pressure to begin his second term as President by cleaning up government. Gordon Brown has warned Mr Karzai that he will exhaust international patience if he fails to act as a credible partner to the West.

It is the third time that the Afghan government has formally launched a unit to tackle corruption in the past eight years. The country's first anti-corruption watchdog was disbanded after it turned out that its head had served time in jail in the United States on drugs charges.

On Sunday the US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, called for the launch of a major crimes tribunal and an anti-corruption commission. "We're looking to see tangible evidence that the government, led by the President but going all the way down to the local level, will be more responsive to the needs of the people," Mrs Clinton said. The US ambassador, Karl Eikenberry, recently advised President Barack Obama not to deploy more US troops to Afghanistan unless President Karzai reined in the bribery and graft that have crippled his administration. He said the new plan "requires action. Words are cheap. Deeds are required."

Afghan officials have countered trenchant criticism in Washington by blaming the international community for pouring billions of dollars of aid into the shattered country without providing effective oversight.

Some anti-corruption experts in Kabul were dismayed at the call for a new watchdog, fearing that a political gesture was overwhelming carefully planned reforms. Tackling corruption took time and resources, they said, and sidelining existing organisations in order to create an illusion of progress would delay results further.

But a spokesman for the British embassy said: "There's been a lot of consultation and [the task force was] certainly not set up overnight." The existing anti-corruption body is the High Office of Oversight, set up with the support of the UN a year ago. Although it has attracted criticism for a perceived lack of independence from President Karzai, who appoints its members, Mr Eikenberry said that it had probably been the most effective law enforcement institution in Afghanistan. The office is still hiring competent staff and poring over hundreds of documents alleging corruption, and officials who have helped to set it up caution against a hasty rethink, with one saying that "it would be a real mistake to start over again". British and American lawyers are training about 50 prosecutors working with the office.

Corruption in Afghanistan is endemic, and the country has plummeted down Transparency International's index of the world's corrupt nations to fifth but last place. A number of high-profile appointees, such as President Karzai's half-brother Ahmed Wali Karzai, are regularly linked with the country's multibillion-dollar drug trade, and government employees routinely cast a blind eye to criminal activity in return for bribes. Afghan anti-corruption officials say that petty corruption is just as corrosive: it can take a month to register a car or get a new passport.

"It's not that the system is corrupt," said one Westerner living in Kabul. "It's that corruption is the system."


The man leading Afghanistan's anti-corruption fight
Source: The Christian Science Monitor By: Ben Arnoldy  

Afghanistan announced Monday the launch of a new anticorruption unit. The head of the current effort, Mohammad Yusin Osmani, says Afghanistan needs more prosecutions and inter-agency cooperation.

Kabul, Afghanistan - There's a joke making the rounds among Afghans: A group of officials go to meet President Hamid Karzai and ask him, "What's your plan for fighting corruption?" Mr. Karzai says, "I will tell you, but first you must give me some money."

Against that cynical backdrop and enormous international pressure, Afghan officials Monday announced the launch of a new anticorruption unit with the help of Interpol and the US. This is the third formal effort to launch a new body aimed at tackling the problem.

In his reelection victory speech, Karzai mentioned by name his current anticorruption czar Mohammad Yusin Osmani. Nearly a year into his job, Mr. Osmani and his Office of Oversight for Anti-Corruption has installed public hotlines and complaints boxes, drafted anticorruption plans with various ministries, and instigated one high-profile takedown of customs agents at the airport. But so far his group has only sent 15 cases to law enforcement agencies, resulting in just a handful of arrests.

The absence of punishment for corrupt officials raises questions about whether the new office will have real teeth either. The problem with the current effort, says Osmani, is that his office lacks the staff and mandate to investigate and prosecute cases. Instead, he must forward what his group finds to the attorney general's office, which is taking months on some cases.

"If this office had the responsibility to gather information, do investigation, and do prosecutions, probably we would be in a much better position in terms of fighting corruption," says Osmani.

Details of the latest anticorruption effort are sketchy, but it appears to be a move to marshal the resources of law enforcement agencies to work together.

"[This] was a reiteration of a joint commitment of all the administrations and institutions that are somehow linked to the chain of justice [to] do whatever possible to fight corruption," says Zamary Bashari, spokesman for the Ministry of Interior. He wasn't sure yet of the structure of the new grouping, but suspected it would not have a new leader and would be complementary to Osmani's efforts.

US demands Karzai fight corruption

Since the election, US officials have hammered Karzai over corruption. The American ambassador in Kabul reportedly warned US President Barack Obama against sending more troops because of corruption. And Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Sunday that the Afghan government must "demonstrate there's no impunity for those who are corrupt" by implementing new US demands.

One such measure, announced Saturday by Attorney General Ishaq Alako, is the establishment of a special court to try senior officials who, under the constitution, cannot be tried by the regular judicial system.

"Everyone knows that in Afghanistan, corruption is at a peak," Mr. Alako told reporters. He promised to stop corruption within six months. He has claimed in the past that he has a list of top officials suspected of taking bribes, and that the country already has put 16,000 people behind bars for corruption.

Examples of Afghan bribes

Yet Afghanistan consistently sits at the bottom of the barrel for corruption, last year ranking 176 out of 180 nations on Transparency International's Corruption Perception Index. Everyone here has personal stories of shakedowns. Even this reporter, when catching a flight leaving Kabul airport, was asked if he would like to cut the long line for a fee.

• Farhad Ghafoor, vice president of business development for the telecommuincations firm Rana, says a university chancellor once threatened to OK his contract bid only if the cost estimate was raised and the surplus passed under the table.

• Noor Agha, a fruit vendor in Kabul, says the police regularly shake him down for bribes so that he can operate his streetside stall.

• Mir Mohammad, an elderly man living on the poor hillsides of the city, says his son must work odd jobs to pay for private classes since the government universities – supposedly free – ask for huge (illegal) "admission fees."

• Haji Mir Rahman, head of Kabul's fruit depot, says police corruption is rampant on the roads. Truckers who drive through the Khyber Pass to Kabul, including Farouq Amjed and Alam Gir, say the number of Afghan police checkpoints asking for money has gone up since the summer. Mr. Amjed says the bribes range from 100 to 1,000 Afghanis ($2 to $20) and that there can be as many as 20 checkpoints on that road.

Osmani says that he has tried to tackle the proliferation of police checkpoints. He worked with several government agencies to crack down on the numbers, set up a complaints hotline, and got several police fired. Bashir Ahmad, a roadside collector for the Transportation Ministry, praised the effort saying "most" of the illegal police checkpoints have been removed; truckers interviwed say nothing has changed.

Building teams to stop bribes

A white-haired man who commands respect across political divides here, Osmani studied public administration in the US and worked for two decades in the Ministry of Finance including stints in the treasury, customs, and auditing departments. In other words, he knows where the skeletons are kept.

Osmani says his group has collected evidence that four Kabul city employees have taken land from people and sold it to others. He forwarded the evidence to the attorney general's office two months ago, and all he has heard is that they are "working on it."

Tired of passing along tips and waiting, Osmani succeeded in "crossing official lines" to get the Ministries of Interior and Finance to set up a joint sting operation at Kabul airport last month. They arrested two customs brokers accused of bribing officials to avoid paying $1 million in excise taxes on a $5.5 million shipment of telecom equipment.

"This was just an example we created to show people that if these institutions cooperate with each other we can achieve a lot," says Osmani. He's careful to say cooperation is good with the attorney general's office and other agencies, but that it's just not quick enough.

Osmani's office has about 80 staff, half of whom are professionals. He says this is less than 30 percent of the people he needs. Because of the limits of his mandate and his staff, he has focused on working with ministries to update procedures where fraud can fester.

Sometimes the bureaucracy has grown overly complex, like in the case of vehicle registrations that require dozens of signatures, leading to the use of corrupt middle-men to facilitate transactions. Other times, like in the case of customs, the adoption of foreign laws changed the traditional systems and created openings for corruption, he says.

After his office helped the Supreme Court implement its anticorruption plan, says Osmani, more than 200 judges and court staff all over Afghanistan were punished or removed.

Some officials argue that corruption is over-estimated, however.

"I am searching around to find one person [working for the city] who is taking a bribe, but I don't see it," says Mir Abdul Ahad Sahebi, the mayor of Kabul. "This latest propaganda about corruption, I personally believe not 2 percent of it is actual facts or figures."

The mayor argues that city amenities cost money and sometimes fees for services get misunderstood as corruption. He also echoes Afghan sentiment that international contracts for development here are the worst offenders.

Osmani doesn't entirely disagree.

"Corruption in Afghanistan is both a reality and an issue of perception," he says. "There are a lot of places in Afghanistan society that are clean and that has not been talked about. Sometimes people tend to exaggerate."


Afghan leaders unveil anti-corruption measures
Source: The Los Angeles Times By: Laura King  

With Karzai to be sworn in Thursday, officials promise reform will be a priority and tout the success of anti-graft efforts already in place. Western envoys stress new plans to confront malfeasance.

Kabul, Afghanistan:- Seeking to smooth over a key point of contention in advance of President Hamid Karzai's inauguration this week, senior Afghan officials on Monday unveiled what they described as tough new anti-corruption measures.

With the Afghan leader poised to be sworn in Thursday for a second five-year term, the West has been putting pressure on Karzai to institute swift reforms or face a loss of international support. Recent days have seen criticism from Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, both of whom suggested that future aid to Karzai's government could be tied to his efforts against corruption.

In apparent response to the growing international pressure, Afghanistan's chief justice, interior minister, justice minister, security chief and attorney general appeared at an unusual joint news conference to announce the launch of a major-crime task force and a new anti-corruption unit.

The ambassadors to Britain and the United States also attended the briefing, in what appeared to be a gesture aimed at demonstrating solidarity in the anti-corruption fight but also providing an implicit warning to the Karzai camp of the consequences of failure to act.

Karzai's inauguration comed debate within the Obama administration over war strategy in Afghanistan, including whether to send in tens of thousands more U.S. troops. Rather than providing a hoped-for mandate for the next Afghan government, the election exacerbated long-simmering anger over the pervasive reach of corruption in public life, extending from the village to the national level. Bribes are routinely extorted for everything, from fixing traffic tickets to awarding lucrative contracts.

Results of the first round of presidential voting, held Aug. 20, initially handed Karzai an outright victory, but a fraud-investigating commission subsequently invalidated nearly a million votes cast for the Afghan leader and said a second round of voting would be needed to settle the contest. A runoff with Karzai's chief rival, Abdullah Abdullah, was canceled when Abdullah dropped out, suggesting he did not believe the vote would be fair.

At Monday's news conference, one senior Afghan official after another described graft and bribery as a blight on their society. "Corruption is a cancer," said Justice Minister Mohammad Sarwar Danish.

Although the gathering was at least nominally a media event, the front rows were packed with Karzai supporters who enthusiastically applauded assertions that reform would be a centerpiece of the new administration.

Tellingly, the Afghan ministers laid emphasis on the success of anti-corruption efforts already in place, while the U.S. and British envoys emphasized heir support for what they characterized as still-nascent plans to confront malfeasance at high levels.

"It's early days," said British Ambassador Mark Sedwill.

British and American law-enforcement agencies are working with their Afghan counterparts in the new anti-corruption drive, the diplomats said.

Aware that a perceived excess of outside pressure on Karzai might cause the Afghan leader to lose face and become more intransigent, both Sedwill and U.S. Ambassador Karl Eikenberry made a point of praising the incoming administration's willingness to confront corruption. Addressing a key Western concern, Eikenberry expressed confidence that Karzai would seek qualified and competent people to fill senior posts in his new administration.

But the tainted election left the Afghan leader beholden to an array of unsavory figures, some of whom expect to claim positions of influence in the new government. Without naming names, Eikenberry issued a strongly worded denunciation of ill-gotten riches among the Afghan elite, some widely believed to be the fruit of the narcotics trade.

"Ordinary Afghans must be convinced that the powerful can no longer exploit their positions to make themselves wealthy while the less fortunate in this country struggle to find work and to feed their families," the ambassador said. "The appearance of luxurious mansions around Kabul, with many expensive cars parked outside, surrounded by private armed guards, is a very worrisome sign that some Afghans are cheating their people while claiming to be in their service."


Yet Another Anti-Corruption Unit for Afghanistan
Source: The Associated Press By: DEB RIECHMANN  

For a third time, Afghanistan sets up anti-corruption squad; critics seek deeds not just words

KABUL:- Afghanistan's newly unveiled anti-corruption unit drew guarded praise Monday from a wary international community, which has heard President Hamid Karzai promise before to end the graft and thievery that's bleeding his nation.

Karzai's inability or unwillingness to tackle cronyism and bribery the past five years has given Taliban insurgents another argument with which to win support from the Afghan people. Nations supplying troops and aid are running out of patience and are threatening to hinge future assistance on his government's ability to ensure accountability.

"Words are cheap. Deeds are required," U.S. Ambassador Karl Eikenberry said at a hotel in Kabul where Afghan officials announced that they had established the Anti-Corruption Unit and Major Crime Force.

Interior Minister Hanif Atmar stressed that the international community did not force the government to set up the unit. He said Afghan officials asked the FBI, Interpol and Britain's Serious Organized Crime Agency to help establish a crime-fighting unit several months ago.

Still, the timing of Monday's announcement, just days before Karzai is inaugurated for a second five-year term following an election marred by fraud, was a clear indication that he is trying to show he's serious about battling corruption — from influence peddling and police bribes to the failure to prosecute government officials who have profited from their positions.

"With the beginning of President Karzai's second term, there really is a powerful opportunity to strengthen the rule of law and to build an even stronger record of accountability and honesty," said Eikenberry, who has questioned the wisdom of adding U.S. forces when the Afghan political situation is unstable and uncertain.

"We must act together," Eikenberry said. "We must act quickly."

American and British officials have been particularly vocal in recent weeks in calling for Karzai to institute reforms following a messy election that took 2 1/2 months to resolve and undermined the legitimacy of a government.

In Brussels, European Union foreign policy chief Javier Solana said it was "fundamental" that Afghanistan have a corruption-free government that would aggressively take on drug-running and other problems. But EU officials did not echo a pledge by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton on Sunday to hold back civilian aid without more accountability.

Much of the development money from foreign donors is funneled through Afghan ministries in an attempt to strengthen the government, but donors regularly complain they lose control of funds once they go into a ministry and often have no way or right to track their use.

Joining top Afghan law enforcement and judicial officials at a news conference, Eikenberry and British Ambassador Mark Sedwill pledged their support for the unit. They lauded Afghan civilian servants, including those at the Counternarcotics Justice Task Force, who are working — sometimes at risk to their own safety — to rid the government of corruption.

The Afghans boasted that they have actively reassigned poorly qualified judges to administrative positions, arrested several hundred people for narcotics offenses in the past year, and removed dozens of corrupt police officers from the force. They talked with enthusiasm about starting a new chapter in the Afghan government.

"For the people involved in corruption — that time is over now," said Atmar, the interior minister.

"Corruption is the cancer that is destroying the lives of the people," said Justice Minister Mohammad Sarwar Danish.

But there was reason for guarded optimism about the unit, which along with the ministers of interior and justice is being overseen by the national security director, attorney general and chief justice of the Afghan Supreme Court.

This is the third formal launch of a crime-fighting unit promising to tackle corruption.

The country's first anti-corruption body was disbanded after it became known that its head had been convicted and imprisoned on drug charges in the United States. A second anti-corruption office was launched last year with a media blitz, promises of high-level trials and the firing of dozens of judges.

More than a year later, Afghans continue to list government corruption as one of their biggest problems, and officials said the judicial graft that the 2008 commission targeted remains one of the key problems the new body will have to tackle.

Transparency International, a non-governmental organization, last year ranked Afghanistan 176th out of 180 countries on its corruption perceptions index, a poll that assesses the degree to which corruption is perceived to exist among public officials and politicians. Only Haiti, Iraq, Myanmar and Somalia were worse.

Afghanistan plans court for corrupt ministers

 
Source: AFP By:    

KABUL– Afghanistan is to set up a special court to try corrupt ministers, the attorney general said on Saturday, as international pressure builds on President Hamid Karzai to act against graft.

The president "will certainly be giving instruction to the Supreme Court" to proceed with the plan, Attorney General Ishaq Alako told reporters.

"Everyone knows that in Afghanistan, corruption is at a peak," he said.

Alako added that "ministers who were previously in cabinet" are allegedly involved in graft and those found guilty will have to pay back misused funds and will be sent to prison, he said.

Huge fraud that marred Afghanistan's August 20 presidential election highlighted the scale of government corruption and Karzai, to be sworn in on November 19, is being warned by foreign leaders that he must act against it.

Under the constitution, ministers cannot be tried by the regular judicial system.

The country is separately developing a special anti-corruption court for non-ministerial offenders.

The attorney general spoke of trying to eliminate corruption within six months to boost morale and "give hope to people."

In a recent interview with US television, Karzai said "individuals who are involved in corruption will have no place in the government."


US demands Afghan 'bribery court'
Source: BBC By:    

The Afghan president must set up a "major crimes tribunal" and an anti-corruption commission, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton says.

She told ABC television that Hamid Karzai "can do better".

The Afghan leader - recently re-elected in a poll marred by fraud allegations - has come under growing Western pressure to deal with corruption.

One of Mr Karzai's spokesmen insisted the Afghan leader's administration was "serious" about tackling corruption.

The American ambassador in Kabul has warned against a US troop surge unless Mr Karzai takes action against corruption.

“ Now we believe that President Karzai and his government can do better ”
Hillary Clinton US Secretary of State

His views are at odds with US generals recommending a major troop deployment.

Afghanistan's chief prosecutor has said he has a list of senior officials and ministers suspected of taking bribes, but refused to publish their names.

Chief prosecutor Ishaq Aluko told the BBC last week that he had asked the president and Supreme Court to set up a special court to deal with the cases.

The presidential election in August was tainted with accusations of fraud and vote-rigging. Mr Karzai's main rival pulled out of a run-off vote.

No aid

Mrs Clinton, in an interview on ABC, said Washington expects "a major crimes tribunal" to be set up and "an anti-corruption commission established and functioning".

She said the Afghan government needed to take action against people who have "taken advantage of the money that has poured into Afghanistan" in the past eight years.

She said she had made it clear that civilian aid would not be given unless the US could track it if it went to government ministries.

Mrs Clinton said the goal of the US was to defeat al-Qaeda, and help Afghans defend themselves against the Taliban.

"Now we believe that President Karzai and his government can do better," she said.

People's needs

"We've delivered that message. Now that the election is finally over, we're looking to see tangible evidence that the government, led by the president but going all the way down to the local level, will be more responsive to the needs of the people."

Corruption in Afghanistan - which is the world's largest producer of opium - is linked mainly to illegal drugs, according to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime.

It has also said the unprecedentedly large amount of international assistance, and pressure to spend resources quickly, also contribute to corruption.

Afghanistan is regularly listed as among the worst five countries - out of 180 - for corruption by watchdog groups.


Clinton says Karzai ‘must do better’
Source: Reuters By:    

Secretary of state urges campaign against corruption

WASHINGTON - Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on Sunday Afghan President Hamid Karzai "must do better" if he wanted U.S. support and that included creating a major crimes tribunal and anti-corruption commission.

"We're going to be doing what we can to create an atmosphere in which the blood and treasure that the United States has committed to Afghanistan can be justified and can produce the kind of results that we're looking for," Clinton said in an interview with ABC News from Singapore.

"We've delivered that message. Now that the (Afghan) election is finally over, we're looking to see tangible evidence that the government, led by the president but going all the way down to the local level, will be more responsive to the needs of the people," Clinton told ABC's "This Week with George Stephanopoulos" show.

President Barack Obama is expected in the coming weeks to announce a new strategy for Afghanistan, including sending in up to 40,000 more troops to fight the eight-year-old war.

A central question as he debates sending in more troops is whether Karzai can be a credible partner in the war and tackle his government's corruption and mismanagement, which is seen as fueling the Taliban.

Karzai, due to be inaugurated this week after August's fraud-plagued election, has come under pressure from the Obama administration to do a better job if he wants to sustain U.S. support in a war that is increasingly unpopular with the American public.

Clinton said she had made it very clear, for example, that the United States would not provide civilian aid to Afghanistan's government unless there was "certification" that it went through ministries that could be held accountable.

Washington also expected there to be a major crimes tribunal and an anti-corruption commission established, Clinton said.

"There does have to be actions by the government of Afghanistan against those who have taken advantage of the money that has poured into Afghanistan in the last eight years so that we can better track it and we can have actions taken that demonstrate there's no impunity for those who are corrupt," she said.


لوی څارنوال د ځينو تورنو چارواکو نومونه افشا کړل
Source: بي بي سي By:    

د افغانستان لوى څارنوال په اداري فساد داخته لوړ پوړو چارواکو په اړه نور معلومات ورکړل .

محمد اسحاق الکو وايي د ولسمشر کرزي د کابينې د ترانسپورټ د ٢ پخوانيو وزيرانو او د اريانا د پخواني مشر نادر اتش په گډون د کندهار هرات، مزارشريف او ننگر ولايتونو ښاروالان په ادرې فساد تورن دي .

بل خوا د دغه هېواد ستره محکمه وايي که ولسمشر ورته واک ورکړي کولى شي له ځانگړې محکمې پرته تورن وزيران دفساد په تور محکمه کړي .

په دې وروستيو کې د افغان دولت له هر ګوټه له اداري فساد سره د مبارزې د چټکتيا رپوټونه تر غوږو کېږي .

د افغانستان لوى څارنوال هم پر نورو چارواکو وريو ځاى شو او په اداري فساد يې د يو شمېر تورنو چارواکو نمونه خبريالانو ته په ډاگه کړل .

اسحاق الکو د يو شمېر پخوا نيو وزيرانو او چارواکو په گډون د حج او اوقافو په وزارت کې دا اوس د اداري فساد د يوې قضيې د څېړنې خبر ورکړ .

ښاغلى الکو په ډاگه کړه چې د اوسنۍ کابينې يو شمير وزيران ، يو شمېر مرستيال وزيران، يو شمېر اوسني او پخواني واليان، او نورو ولايتي او مرکزي لوړ پوړي چارواکي په اداري فساد ککړ دي .

ده يې د نومونو له ښولو ډډه وکړه خو څرگنده يې کړه چې دوسيې يې څېړل کېږي :

((په دوى کې د کابېنې يو شمېر پخواني او اوسني وزيران، يو شمېر ښاروالان، يوشمېر معينان او د يو شمېرڅانگو ريسان شامل دي .

د ښاغلي قادري او قاسمي دوسيې ترڅېړنې لاندې دي او ښاغلى اتش امريکا ته تللى او د هغه د نيولو جلب مو انټرپول 'نړيوالو پوليسو' ته سپارلى چې له هغه ځايه راولي . ))

د قانون جوړه شوې مسوده

د افغانستان لوى څارنوال وايي له وزيرانو او لوړ پوړو چارواکو پرته په شته محکمو کې محکمه کړي خو د افغانستان قوانين د فساد په تور د تورنو وزيرانو لپاره د ځانگړې محکمې د جوړولو وړانديزونه کړي او ددغې محکمې د رامنځ ته کولو لپاره سترې محکمې د افغانستان ملي شورا ته د قانون جوړه شوې مسوده د منلو لپاره ليږلې .

خو د سترې محکمې يو چارواکي عبدالمالک کاموي وايي که ولسمشر ورته ځانگړى واک ورکړي نو تورن لوړ پوړي چارواکي په ټولو محکمو کې محکمه کولى شي .

دا لومړى ځل نه دى چې په افغانستان کې په اداري فساد کې د لوړ پوړو چارواکو د ښکېلتيا خبره کېږي، خو په افغان حکومت کې په سملاسي توگه د فساد د جرړو ويستلو لپاره دنړيوالو فشارونوپه لړ کې د افغانستان لوى څارنوال ژمنه کوي چې که مرسته ور سره وشي فساد د ختمولو په ډگر کې به افغانانو او نړيوالو ته په څو مياشتو کې د خپلې مبارزې اثرات وښيي .

خو يو شمير افغان کار پوهان لکه وحيدالله غازي خيل په اوسنيو وختونو کې چې ولسمشر کرزى د نوې کابينې او حکومت په جوړولو بوخت دي ددغه ډول ژمنو ورکول د نړيوالو فشارونو يو ډول ځواب بولي :

((زه فکر کوم چې دا تر ډېره تشريفاتي بڼه لري او هېڅ مانا نه لري، ځکه چې اوس يو کمېسيون جوړ شوی چې اداري فساد به ورکوي، ٢٢ ميليونه ډالر دې ته ځانګړي شوي دي . ))

خو د افغانستان د عدلي او قضايي ادارو لخوا په ادار ي فساد له يو شمېرککړو لوړ پوړو چاروا څخه ريښتينې پلټنې به بې له شکه چې د فساد په وړاندې مبارزې باندې د خلکو با ور زيات اوتر يوه بريده به نړيوال قانع کړي .

خو له دغې سترې او پراخې ناروغۍ د افغانستان خلاصول لويه ننگونه بلل کېږي چې د عملي کېدو پر وړاندې يې په خپله چارواکي د تورنو د تښتېدو، دوى ته يو شمېر کسانو د واسطه کولو او پلټونکو ته د بډو د وړاندې کولو په څېر نور لوى خنډونه پر وړاندې پراته بولي

 

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