Some Afghans Wish John Kerry Would Be Their President
If U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry ever needs a new job, he could find himself at home in Afghanistan.
After a recent diplomatic visit to the country, Kerry was hailed as a hero and a great politician, so much so, that some Afghans wished he would run for president.
“John Kerry is the greatest American and the best friend of Afghanistan. He helped prevent this country from going to civil war two times,” 29-year-old Kabul shopkeeper Maqsood Parwani told NBC news. “I wish if we could elect him as our president, but we cannot so hope the American people elect him as their president.”
While in Afghanistan, Kerry helped end the drawn-out Afghani presidential election, which had previously reached a stalemate. After two days of talks, Kerry helped convince the two presidential hopefuls, Ashraf Ghani and Abdullah Abdullah, to agree to a U.N supervised recount of the vote.
The original runoff election in Afghanistan took place April, and a record seven million of 12 million eligible Afghani citizens voted. Of the eleven candidates in the first-round election, only Abdullah and Ghani made it to the June 14 second-round election.
The election marked the first time in history that the country’s power has been democratically transferred. But rather than a successful election and a peaceful transfer of powers, as both Afghanistan and the United States had hoped for, allegations of voter fraud preceded the June 14 vote. After the contested runoff election, outrage spilled into the streets as citizens expressed their displeasure towards the alleged election frauds.
The former foreign minister Abdullah refused to accept the original voting count, due to suspicion of corruption and false counts. Kerry helped to create a new chief minister position after a recount of the vote. He also took similar diplomatic action in 2009. Due to Kerry’s prominent role in the soothing of the conflict, he has received much praise from the Afghani people.
Prominent Afghani parliament member, Dr. Mohiuddin Mahdi, recently posted on his Facebook page that Kerry should be nominated for a Nobel peace prize for his efforts in the region.
“I ask the government of Afghanistan to give this tall man — I call him Jan Agha — Afghan citizenship so he might be able to run for president next time,” Taxi driver Noor Ahmad told NBC, referring to Kerry with an honorary title. “I am so grateful for Jan Agha’s tireless efforts to bring our politicians together and help end the uncertainty.”
Follow Ariel on Twitter