The BBC’s John Simpson is no fan of much of American foreign policy (particularly in Iraq), which makes this (relatively) optimistic account of developments in Afghanistan all the more revealing:
“The fact is that even if the streets of the city erupt with explosions this coming week, it will be too late. Barring the worst of disasters, the presidential election now seems unstoppable. The process of voter registration has been a remarkable success: so good, it may be that at least a million voters have registered more than once. “This is Afghanistan, after all,’ one Western ambassador says, indulgently. Forty per cent of the registered voters are women: another major success. So although there have been problems in the south and west of the country – the Pashtu-speaking areas, where the Taliban have traditionally had their support – the election should be an important stage on Afghanistan’s road to recovery.”
Read the whole thing.