‘Morally Wrong’: Former Afghan President Hamid Karzai Blasts Biden For Afghan Debacle

(SHAH MARAI/AFP via Getty Images)

Dylan Housman Deputy News Editor
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Former Afghan President Hamid Karzai blasted the United States and President Joe Biden in a new interview with The Washington Post over a series of decisions he said left Afghanistan at the mercy of the Taliban.

Karzai called Biden’s Afghanistan policies since the American withdrawal from the country “morally wrong.” He said in the interview, which was conducted in October and printed this week, that the administration is further victimizing the Afghan people. He also said the United States has the moral responsibility to do more to help Afghanistan because of its frequent intervention in the country in recent decades.

“I strongly disagree with the decision to strip the Afghan reserves, keeping half of it for the possibility of distribution to the 9/11 victims with whom the Afghan people commiserate fully,” Karzai said of Biden. “We as the greatest victims of terrorism commiserate fully with American families who lost lives and suffered in that great tragedy of Sept. 11. It is morally wrong to take money from the greatest victim and the poorest victim and give it to another victim when both are victims of the same atrocity, of the same oppression.”

Karzai referred to Biden’s executive order to split $7 billion in frozen funds from Afghanistan’s central bank between rebuilding the country and paying for legal fees for the families of 9/11 victims, who have pursued financial compensation from the Taliban. The families have intensified their efforts since the militants took control of Kabul last year.

“I have had lots of disagreements and quarrels with the United States on issues … But I am not going to lay the whole blame at the door of the United States. We Afghans are responsible as well in many, many ways,” Karzai said when asked whether the United States bears responsibility for Afghanistan‘s current state.

Karzai did deflect some responsibility for Afghanistan’s pervasive corruption during his tenure, blaming foreign powers like the United States. “I take full responsibility for the corruption and bribes in the delivery of services, as it is in many parts of the world,” Karzai began.

“But the big contracts, big corruption, in hundreds of millions of dollars or millions of dollars, was clearly a United States of America thing … Yes, there was corruption, but to blame Afghans or the Afghan government for it, is wrong. We do take responsibility. I would never say there was no corruption. But who was responsible for it? Afghans or our international partners? Mainly our international partners, and they know it,”

When asked whether his own government played a part in the collapse of the government, Karzai denied responsibility. He said he called the Taliban “brothers” because Afghans on all sides were dying in what he said was a mismanaged American war. (RELATED: Afghan Commandos Abandoned By Biden Reportedly Being Trained By Russia To Fight Ukraine)

“I wanted the United States of America to be an ally of the Afghan people and not to fight a war in our villages. They knew, the Americans, that the sanctuaries were in Pakistan. They told us that repeatedly,” he said. “And they would bomb Afghan villages. They would come and tell us that Pakistan was training extremists and terrorists. Then, they would go and pay them billions of dollars. When this was repeated and repeated, I had only one conclusion. The conclusion was either the Americans are doing this on purpose. Or that they are extremely naive and out of touch with the realities of this region.”

Karzai served as president of Afghanistan from 2002 to 2014, and was the first elected president of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan in 2004.