Team Obama Handles Karzai With Kid Gloves
Posted on May 13, 2010
Relations between the U.S. and Afghan administrations have been less than cozy in recent months, but President Obama’s crew, headed by Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, attempted to warm things up this week by giving visiting President Hamid Karzai the royal treatment in Washington. —KA
The New York Times:
The party capped a day of meetings meant to showcase the breadth and durability of the relationship between the United States and Afghanistan — one that is more often characterized by the testy back-and-forth between this administration and the mercurial Afghan leader.
“We have told President Karzai that the United States will be there as a partner and a friend long after the combat troops have left,” Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton declared, with Mr. Karzai smiling at her side. “Our commitment is one that is enduring and durable.”
[...] Administration officials said in advance that they did not plan to hector Mr. Karzai about corruption during this visit, concluding that their earlier “tough love” approach had only made him resentful. Several Afghan officials appeared to be thrilled by the velvet glove treatment.
AP / Carolyn Kaster
Afghanistan’s President Hamid Karzai and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton shake hands as they address the media at the State Department in Washington on Tuesday.