Tensions, what tensions?
U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Jack Lew arrived back from Afghanistan and Pakistan on Friday, touting the performance of several ministers in Afghan President Hamid Karzai’s government.
His visit came at a particularly tense time in U.S.-Afghan relations after Karzai made some corrosive statements in recent weeks against his donors, blaming the West for much of the corruption in his country and drawing critical comments from the White House.
Hours after landing home, Lew went out of his way to single out several Afghan ministers, including the finance and agriculture ministers, who he said were “extraordinary leaders.”
He cited a dinner two days ago in Kabul where he was seated next to former presidential candidate Ashraf Ghani and the current finance minister.
“Sitting there between these two leaders of a country — with so much ground to catch up in so many ways — one was left with such a strong impression at the same time that there were extraordinary leaders there, who frankly were on par or above the leaders of many countries that are considered highly developed,” Lew gushed.