If things were any better, there’d be no room for improvement

So let’s all be thankful that things in Afghanistan are only almost FUBAR:

Nancy Lindborg of Mercy Corps, the American aid group, says: “We’ve operated in Afghanistan for about 15 years and we’ve never had the insecurity that we have now.”

People have been threatened by the Taliban and al Qaeda. They have put leaflets in mosques and sent letters saying they will burn down the house and cut off the nose of anyone who tries to participate in the constitution,” said Omar Satib, an official at the election office. “We put announcements on the radio, but people are just not ready to come.”

A law passed in the mid-70s prohibiting married women from attending high-school classes was upheld in September by President Hamed Karzai’s government… Sayed Ahmad Sarwari, the deputy education minister, [said] he didn’t know the exact number of women who have been expelled, but that it was “possibly more than two or three thousand”.

The UN reported that opium-growing families were making an average $US3900 a year against the gross domestic product per capita of $US184, based on 2002 estimates.

Nov. 29 ? Next month, when Afghanistan holds a national council to adopt its new constitution, 64 of the 500 seats will be held by women, but some of those women already are getting death threats.

Officials said that is the bloodiest period in Afghanistan since U.S. forces overthrew the Taliban in late 2001 for sheltering Saudi-born Osama bin Laden and members of his al Qaeda network, blamed for the September 11 attacks in the United States.

Kevin Drum thinks Bush deserves 4 out of 10 for Afghanistan. That seems a bit generous to us.


Comments: 3


Kevin Drum is an idiot – 4/10 for Afghanistan? Perhaps that would’ve been about right when we installed Karzai and bailed, but now? 1/10 is being generous, and that’s only because Karzai’s not dead (mostly because he doesn’t govern the country anyway). Fun debate question for Bush: How are Afghanistan’s women doing since they’ve been “liberated”?


Hey, stop pathologically hatin’. The warlords give Bush great marks and his domestic bible-thumping base in Talabama is thrilled he hasn’t used the F-word* for over a year.



mndean: Note that Kevin Drum’s ratings were defined as “in terms the Bush Administration’s desired outcome”, not sane people’s desired outcome — in other words, he was deliberately trying to score the administration’s competency, rather than their virtue. Don’t know if that affects your assessment of Drum, but I thought you should know.


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