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Entries in Hamid Karzai (2)

Tuesday
Feb082011

Obama: I Won't Let the Taliban to Retake Afghanistan

Photo Courtesy - Sean Gallup/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- President Obama says the U.S. is intent on winning the war in Afghanistan by preventing the Taliban from regaining control of the country it led from the mid-1990's through 2001.

In the second part of an interview with Fox News host Bill O'Reilly, Obama asserted, "I can say we will defeat al Qaeda and that the Taliban will not be retaking Afghanistan."

The president, who ordered a surge of 30,000 more soldiers to join the coalition effort that began nearly ten years ago, praised American forces as being "on the offensive rather than being on the defensive and we’re starting to transition so that Afghan security forces are taking over."

According to Obama, one of the biggest variables that could either guarantee or squash success in Afghanistan is the performance of its volatile leader, President Hamid Karzai.

Washington has had a love-hate relationship with Karzai ever since he came to power in 2005, and Obama said, "I do think that he’s got some big changes that he has to make in his government to be legitimate in the eyes of the Afghan people over the long term."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Jan112011

Biden Meets with Afghan President; Emphasizes US Commitment

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(KABUL, Afghanistan) -- Vice President Biden said Tuesday the coalition forces in Afghanistan have “largely arrested the Taliban momentum” in key areas there.  But he acknowledged that the gains are “fragile and reversible.”

Biden’s comments came after a meeting with Afghan President Hamid Karzai at the presidential palace in Kabul.

Biden emphasized the U.S. commitment to the Afghan government.  “We are not leaving if you don't want us to leave,” he said.

The vice president said while there are “many hard days that lie ahead,” there is now a “viable path going forward” to the transition from U.S. forces to Afghan security forces by 2014.

"We've moved into a new phase in Afghanistan: transition to full Afghan lead beginning this year and concluding in 2014," he said.

Biden reiterated the message that a senior administration official conveyed on the trip over -- the United States is there to assist the Afghan government, not lead.

"It is not our intention to govern or to nation-build,” Biden said.  “As President Karzai often points out, this is the responsibility of the Afghan people and they are fully capable of it.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio