Friday, May 8, 2009

A Stressful Time in Afghanistan

I apologize for not posting in the last two weeks. I know that some of you have been concerned about me. Unexpectedly, I was sent back to Washington for meetings at the Department of State. When I returned to Kabul, we faced a major crisis. As you may have read, there was an incident in the Farah Province of Western Afghanistan where many civilians have been killed. At this point, we do not know how they were killed, but demonstrations have erupted in the streets and blame is targeted in many directions.

According to the reports, the Taliban beheaded some members of the provincial government, eliciting a swift response from the Afghan National Police. When the police went to arrest the people that committed the crimes, they came under attack and called for help from American fighter jets. Munitions were dropped on the buildings occupied by the Taliban. After the smoke cleared, the Taliban claimed that U.S. forces killed dozens of civilians.

We believe that this may not be true, and that the Taliban may have slaughtered innocent people while blaming us for the tragedy. My colleagues and I have been awake for hours on end responding to media interest and working to find out what really happened. When civilians die, it's tragic, no matter how they were killed. My stress level and sadness are intense, and it’s difficult to sleep imagining how the families and loved ones of the victims must feel. I am working hard to keep perspective and think long term about why we are here. I hope our presence will help create a better life for the people of Afghanistan. They so deserve to live in peace.


  1. It sounds very stressful trying to figure out what happened when the media is howling.
    I appreciate the job you are doing over there.

  2. Maybe we need a truth commission to fully understand the policies got us here in the first place- going to back to the United States role in the Iran/Afghanistan conflict. Maybe we need a truth commission to understand just the what hell happened in Afghanistan during President Bush- I mean who made the decisions to bomb Afghanistan to the stone ages instead of going after Al Qaeda and the Taliban. Maybe just maybe it isn't more warfare that will the solve the problems. Maybe we can't fix it just because we broke it.