RSS
Hamid Karzai's weeping fit: Bad sign?
The president of Afghanistan broke down in the middle of a speech yesterday. Does this bode well for the Taliban?
Does a public display of emotion send the wrong message?
Does a public display of emotion send the wrong message?
YouTube
T

he video: Afghan President Hamid Karzai has drawn international attention — and a measure of concern — after he began weeping during a nationally televised speech on Tuesday. With internal violence on the rise, Karzai broke down and expressed concern that his 4-year-old son, Mirwais, might one day be forced to flee Afghanistan. "I have pain in my heart," Karzai said, his eyes red and his voice breaking. "I'm afraid that my son, my own son will become a refugee one day."
The reaction: Karzai's tears are hardly a good sign, says Blake Hounshell at Foreign Policy. It sends a message to the Taliban, and to Karzai's supporters, that he is weak and may be "considering getting out of Dodge." Perhaps, says Dan Murphy at The Christian Science Monitor, but Karzai's show of emotion is understandable as "civilians, minor officials, and local police are being killed on a daily basis," targets of the Taliban's escalating assassination campaign. Who wouldn't cry in that position?

 

 

EDITORS' PICKS

THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER

Subscribe to the Week