Peter Galbraith On His Job, Electoral Fraud In Afghanistan, And The United Nations

by Pejman Yousefzadeh on October 4, 2009

This editorial should increase concerns about the U.N.’s incoherent response to what clearly appears to have been fraud in the recent round of presidential elections between the incumbent, Hamid Karzai, and the former foreign minister, Abdullah Abdullah. Among other things, Galbraith informs us that he was told to not tell the truth concerning his firing, that the U.N. actively lied about the reasons he was dismissed, and that Galbraith was ordered by his superiors at the U.N. not to press the issue when it came to investigating electoral fraud.

No one should come away from reading Galbraith’s testimonial without a feeling of deep concern over the state of political reconstruction in Afghanistan. And no one should have any faith whatsoever in the ability of the United Nations to act as a force for good in Afghanistan, or anywhere else. It was fashionable to sneer at Bush Administration officials who believed–and still believe–that the United Nations is in serious need of reform. But it would appear that those critics were entirely correct.

And just out of curiosity, will the Obama Administration ever comment on this issue, and its larger implications for the future of the United Nations?

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