April 3, 2014 |
KABUL, Afghanistan - The last time Abdullah Abdullah ran for president of Afghanistan the election devolved into a bloody farce. Votes cast in some areas in 2009 exceeded the number of voters. One in 5 ballots nationwide was tossed out because of fraud. Thirty-one people died in insurgent attacks. Days before a runoff against President Hamid Karzai, Abdullah withdrew from the race, fearing more fraud in the incumbent's favor. Five years later, the Karzai era is ending, as is the dominant role of the United States in Afghan life.
November 24, 2010 |
Afghanistan's main electoral body on Wednesday released what were billed as the final results of September's trouble-plagued parliamentary election. But as with so many things here, final doesn't mean over with. Results for one of the country's 34 provinces -- Ghazni, south of the capital, Kabul -- were withheld because violence, intimidation and fraud were considered so rampant that election officials decided a fair tally was impossible. Even as the Independent Election Commission was announcing the rest of the results, supporters of some candidates who had been disqualified days earlier by a watchdog body staged angry street demonstrations in Kabul and elsewhere.
November 2, 2009 |
President Hamid Karzai's only challenger today pulled out of next week's election runoff, saying the incumbent had turned down his demand for changes to prevent the rampant fraud that marred the first round of voting in August. The withdrawal of former Foreign Minister Abdullah Abdullah threw into disarray a vote that U.S. officials and their allies had hoped would produce a credible partner in the fight against Taliban and Al Qaeda insurgents. Azizullah Lodin, head of the government-appointed Independent Election Commission, said the panel would have to consult lawyers before deciding whether to proceed with Saturday's vote with just one candidate.
October 28, 2009 |
Eight U.S. troops were killed today in multiple bombings in southern Afghanistan, the military said, making October the deadliest month for Americans of the eight-year war. The latest deaths bring the number of U.S. service members killed during the month to at least 53, according to the independent website icasualties.org. Today's deaths occurred in "multiple, complex" bombings in the south, the military said in a news release. No further details were provided. An Afghan civilian working with the International Security Assistance Force, or ISAF, in Afghanistan was also killed, and several service members were injured in the incidents, the military said.
October 28, 2009
Re "Push for troops on a deadly day," Oct. 27, and "Nobody wins in the Afghan runoff election," Opinion, Oct. 21, and "The Afghan trap," Opinion, Oct. 20 Sending more troops to Afghanistan will increase the killing, not only of our own troops but of the Afghan people as well, simply because we are still there. After bombing and killing arguably tens of thousands of Iraqi civilians and still counting, when are we going to realize that we cause more deaths by occupying these countries than by minding our own business?
October 25, 2009 |
Afghanistan's runoff presidential campaign formally opened today with an ominous repeat from the first round: Taliban threats to disrupt the vote. "If anyone finds themselves injured taking part in this dirty process, they have only themselves to blame," the insurgent movement said in a statement posted on its Pashtu-language website. It also denounced the election two weeks from now as a foreign-orchestrated sham. The original Aug. 20 balloting, Afghanistan's second-ever direct presidential election, was marked by violence, mainly scattered on voting day itself but preceded by several weeks of concerted attacks, including major bombings in the capital, Kabul.