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Brown Tours Afghanistan, Cites Corruption

Monday, August 24, 2009 at 4:38 PM

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A U.S. congressional delegation, including representatives from Ohio, is in Afghanistan -- the first to visit since national elections there. Ideastream®'s Rick Jackson reports.

In his first visit to Afghanistan, Ohio senator Sherrod brown met with U.S. military commanders and with President Harmid Karzai who is waiting to see if he’ll remain in office after all the votes are counted. 

Brown is one of several American lawmakers who have intensified their criticism of Karzai lately, saying his government has not done enough to crack down on corruption and the drug trade that fuels the insurgency.  Brown says the Kabul government “has to show results”...and “time is running out.”

During his visit brown also said “the jury is still out” on whether additional American troops will be needed in Afghanistan but he said American patience is wearing thin. 

SENATOR BROWN: “We’ve lost huge opportunities, and much of the last six or seven years in Afghanistan, to root out terrorism and to defeat the Taliban. We missed those opportunities because of the focus on the war in Iraq.”

Brown said last week’s presidential election was clearly not as free of irregularities as monitors had hoped - and that corruption remains rampant in the nation, including at the highest levels of the afghani government.

Also on the trip was Ohio congressman Zack Space.


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