COMMENT: The key link between the CIA, the Karzai family and the Golden Triangle of opium production in Afghanistan seems to be strongly suggested if not clear from past admissions about their deep connections. Putting this alliance forward as a strategy to win the Afghan regional conflict seems naïve and doomed to fail.

RELATED: Oct. 2009 – NY Times: Brother of Afghan Leader Said to Be Paid by C.I.A.
RELATED: Oct. 2008 – NY Times: Reports Link Karzai’s Brother to Afghanistan Heroin Trade
RELATED: Aug. 2009 – UPI: Karzai’s half brother an opium baron?
RELATED: Aug. 2006 – Der Spiegel: Karzai’s Brother Under Drug Suspicion
RELATED: You Tube – Fox News Admits U.S. Troops Guard Opium in Afghanistan

CIA Man Is Key to U.S. Relations With Karzai

Wall Street Journal
August 24, 2010

The Obama administration has turned to the Central Intelligence Agency’s station chief in Afghanistan to troubleshoot Washington’s precarious relationship with President Hamid Karzai, propelling the undercover officer into a critical role normally reserved for diplomats and military chiefs.

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The station chief has become a pivotal behind-the-scenes power broker in Kabul, according to U.S. officials as well as current and former diplomats and military figures. In April, when Mr. Karzai lashed out against his Western partners, it was the station chief who was tapped by the White House to calm the Afghan president.

The CIA’s prominent role in Afghanistan is fraught, the spy agency having clashed at times with the official diplomatic mission. That has complicated the civilian component of the U.S. military surge.

The station chief, a former Marine in his 50s, is known to some colleagues by his nickname, “Spider.” The CIA didn’t make him available for an interview.

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Besides his relationship with Mr. Karzai, he serves the more traditional role of running CIA operations in Afghanistan, a growing component of the war. The CIA is expanding its presence there by 20% to 25%, in its largest surge since Vietnam. The several hundred officers assigned to Afghanistan outnumber those in Iraq at the height of that war.

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