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Turmoil In Afghanistan

U.S. Ambassador Ryan Crocker is just out. And he’s talking. Critically. He joins us.

 In this Friday, Sept. 14, 2012 file photo, Afghans burn the U.S. flag in Ghanikhel district of Nangarhar province, east of Kabul, Afghanistan, during a protest against an anti-Islam film which depicts the Prophet Muhammad as a fraud, a womanizer and a madman. Islamic militants seek to capitalize on anger over an anti-Islam video that was produced in the United States, saying a suicide bombing that killed a dozen in Afghanistan is revenge and calling for attacks on U.S. diplomats and facilities in North Africa. (AP)

In this Friday, Sept. 14, 2012 file photo, Afghans burn the U.S. flag in Ghanikhel district of Nangarhar province, east of Kabul, Afghanistan, during a protest against an anti-Islam film which depicts the Prophet Muhammad as a fraud, a womanizer and a madman.  (AP)

More mayhem in Afghanistan.  Riots over the infamous anti-Islam video.  And worse.  A suicide bomber kills a bus full of foreign workers.  Taliban dressed like US soldiers blow up a half dozen $30 million-a-pop U.S. military jets.  And worst, Afghan security forces – our putative allies – turning their guns, again, on US troops coming to their rescue.

Four dead.  51 NATO troops this year.  Now, the U.S.-led coalition has suspended joint operations with Afghans, the very heart of our turnover strategy.

This hour, On Point:  we ask retiring US ambassador to Afghanistan, Ryan Crocker, what’s going on.

-Tom Ashbrook


Matthew Rosenberg, reporter for the New York Times in Kabul.

Ryan Crocker, former U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan from 2011 to 2012; ambassador to Iraq from 2007 to 2009; ambassador to Pakistan from 2004 to 2007.

Rep. Jerrold Nadler, congressman for New York’s 8th District.

From Tom’s Reading List

The New York Times “In a significant blow to a core element of the Western exit strategy from Afghanistan, the American-led military coalition said Tuesday it has temporarily curtailed joint operations with the Afghan Army and police forces.”

Foreign Policy “Revolt is a loaded word, conjuring up images of the Free Syrian Army, the Anbar Awakening, and the Libyan civil war.  In small pockets across eastern Afghanistan, however, farmers, shopkeepers and others are taking the fight to the Taliban over the group’s abusive tendencies.  Though entirely isolated from one another, instances of violent resistance to harsh Taliban rules have spiked this past summer-brought on by school closings in Ghazni, music bans in Nuristan, beheadings in Paktia and murders in Laghman, among other causes.  While a small number of Afghans admire the Taliban, most who support it do so because they are coerced, or believe that the group is less predatory than the government, though that’s hardly an endorsement.”

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