Afghanistan Analysts Network – English

AAN in the Media

AAN In The Media – September 2009

6 min

VN sturen Amerikaanse gezant de laan uit (UN dismisses American envoy)
De Standaard Daily (Belgium), 30 September 2009.
Article on Gaibrath’s dismissal quotes AAN on the fact that the UN had initiated an internal inquiry into a leak to the press on the existence of fake polling stations.

Conflict binnen VN over fraude Afghanistan (Conflict within the UN over Afghanistan’s fraud)
Volkskrant Daily (Netherlands), 30 September 2009.
AAN is quoted on sources of conflict between Eide and Gailbrath’s that ultimately led to Gailbrath’s dismissal.

VN-gezant Kabul weg uit Kabul na ruzie met chef (UN envoy leaves Kabul after argument with boss)
NRC Daily (Netherlands), 30 September 2009.
AAN is quoted as source for the news on Gailbrath’s dismissal.

An election under siege, 29 October 2009
Martine van Bijlert, of the Afghanistan Analysts Network, a think-tank, believes that fraud is inevitable so long as Mr Karzai’s henchmen are worried about the outcome. She argues that the focus now should be on ways to detect fraud before it happens, “rather than simply hoping it will be better this time”.

New road paved with promises and projects
Brisbane Times, 28 September 2009
In this third and last part of a series on the Khost-Gardez highway Thomas Ruttig takes exception to an anthropologists’ assessment of the locals as savages.

Afghanistan’s electoral well-crafted: the mimic or the dog? – Full comment, 27 September 2009
This blog that seems to have been translated into Russian and back (thank you Google), quotes Martine as having said: ‘The mains intention why you haven’t seen a in number cosmopolitan intransigence up to this time is that it is unclear what gracious of results are contemporary to be presented’.

As Germany Votes Afghan Mission Gets Growing Attention
Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 26 September 2009
In this analysis of German parties’ positions on Afghanistan on election eve, AAN’s Thomas Ruttig is quoted extensively.

The Road to Perdition
The Brisbane Times. 26 September 2009.
Article by Paul McGeough, as part of a series on the intrigues surrounding the Khost-Gardez road, discusses the respective roles of Pacha Khan Zadran and Jalaluddin Haqqani. Quotes Thomas Ruttig.

Obama hat noch kein Rezept (Obama Hasn’t Found a Recipe Yet)
Tagesspiegel (Berlin), 23 September 2009
AAN’s Thomas Ruttig comments on General McChrystal’s assessment on the US approach to Afghanistan.

Afghans on troop surge debate: It’s the corruption, stupid
Christian Science Monitor (online), 23 September 2009
In an analysis of what should be done to address electoral fraud, AAN’s Thomas Ruttig pleads for preparing a Loya Jirga by ‘jirgas at the local level and have residents, officials, and international actors all make commitments to each other’.

Diplomaten statt Soldaten (Diplomats instead of Soldiers)
tageszeitung (Berlin), 22 September 2009
In a comment for the Berlin daily, AAN’s Thomas Ruttig argues that politicians should take back the lead from the military again in developing an Afghanistan strategy and that a clean-up of the electoral fraud must be the first step for the West if it wants to regain Afghans’ confidence.

Reconciliation as the post-election national agenda
UNAMA Afghan Update, Peace Day Special Issue, 21 September 2009
This UNAMA publication quotes Thomas Ruttig’s proposals on a reconciliation mechanism from his paper ‘The Other Side’.

Afghan role at stake in German poll 
BBC News, 18 September 2009
In an analysis of the impact of the Afghan issue on the German elections, AAN’s Thomas Ruttig is quoted extensively.

Vorläufige Mehrheit für Karsai (Preliminary Majority for Karzai)
tageszeitung (Berlin), 17 September 2009
In an article for the Berlin daily, AAN’s Thomas Ruttig explains what is left to be done (by the ECC) after the announcement of the preliminary final result of the 20 August election.

Raus aus Afghanistan – Aber wie und wann? (Out of Afghanistan – but how and when?)
Stern (Hamburg), 17 September 2009
In his analysis of options for an orderly withdrawal from Afghanistan, Christoph Reuter quotes AAN’s Thomas Ruttig on how Afghan democracy was pevented from emerging at the Emergency Loya Jirga.

Eight years after 9/11, Taliban roils 80 percent of Afghanistan
Christian Science Monitor (online), 11 September 2009
In this analysis by Aunohita Mojumdar, AAN’s Thomas Ruttig is quoted on the growing influence of the Taleban in Kunduz province.

Afghanistan – Mangel an Glaubwürdigkeit (Afghanistan’s Elections – A Lack of Credibility)
Tagesspiegel (Berlin), 11 September 2009
AAN’s Thomas Ruttig warns that a second round of voting would be marred by the same security situation as the first one and that turn-out might even drop further.

The Afghanistan election fiasco was wholly predictable
Times Online. 11 September 2009.
In an article that explores the origins of this year’s electoral fraud, Martine van Bijlert is quoted: “In 2005 [the fraud] wasn’t just small-scale, we saw the seeds of massive, organised fraud, especially in the southeast. What we are seeing today is a development of that, (…) The problem is a basic lack of rule of law. In eight years we haven’t established a culture where you follow rules.”

Fraud watchdog annuls Afghan votes
ABC News, 11 September 2009
Martine van Bijlert, co-director of the Afghanistan Analysts Network, says it is hard to tell what the controversy means for the long-term progress of the country. She thinks that ironically, the situation is so bad it might actually do some good.”There is now actually a chance to signal to the Afghan people that things that are not acceptable will not be accepted and that it might change.”

Ballots cancelled in Afghanistan’s tainted poll
ABC News Australia, 9 September 2009
Martine van Bijlert says it’s hard to tell what the controversy means for the long term progress of the country. Ironically, the situation is so bad it might actually do some good: “Because there is this potential for confrontation, there is now actually a chance to signal to the Afghan people that things that are not acceptable will not be accepted and that it might change.”

100 Prozent für Hamid Karsai (100 per cent for Hamed Karzai)
Freitag (Berlin), 11 September 2009
In his analysis of the Afghan elections’ current status for this Berlin weekly, Thomas Ruttig comes to the conclusion that a recognition of a manipulated victory by the international community would be a carte blanche for the Afghan all-party narco-mafia to continue pillaging the country (in German).

Machtkampf der Wahl-Kommissionen (Power Struggle of the Election Commissions)
Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, 9 September 2009
Christoph Ehrhardt quotes AAN’s last report on electoral fraud and Thomas Ruttig as saying that ‘all cases of manipulations needs to be painstakingly scrutinised – even when it takes longer then expected’.

Karzai beschadigd en verzwakt na ‘overwinning’ (Karzai damaged and weakened after ‘victory’)
Volkskrant Daily (Netherlands), 9 September 2009.
Article quotes AAN’s Martine van Bijlert on the current tussle between the IEC and ECC and the need to publicly deal with the fraud.

Nederland handhaaft beleid in Afghanistan (Netherlands continues its policy in Afghanistan)
Metro Daily (Netherlands), 9 September 2009.
Article quotes Martine van Bijlert, saying that military means will not be enough to turn the situation around, pointing to the importance of good governance and restored confidence.

Disillusionment over Afghanistan Grows in West
Spiegel (English version), 8 September 2009
Pursuing the question whether the war in Afghanistan still can be won, Susanne Koelbl refers to the AAN report on electoral fraud and quotes Thomas Ruttig as saying that ‘Afghans don’t need agricultural experts from Kentucky’ but loans, irrigation systems, fertilizer, seeds, markets — and peace.

Karzai leads Afghan vote, but election watchdog finds fraud
Christian Science Monitor (online), 8 September 2009
In the daily’s Global News Blog, Aunohita Mojumdar quotes AAN’s Thomas Ruttig welcome that the international community is now standing up to Afghan election fraud ‘late but not too late’.

Afghan Reaction To [Kunduz] Strike Muted
Washington Post, 7 September 2009
This article by Pam Constable quotes AAN’s Thomas Ruttig on the misguided 4 September airstrike saying that ‘many residents want U.S. and NATO forces to take action against the Taliban, but ‘precisely, without collateral damage’.

Karsai vor gefälschtem Wahlsieg (Karzai heads to a fraudulent election victory)
die tageszeitung (Berlin), 7 September 2009
In an article for the Berlin daily, AAN’s Thomas Ruttig predicts that the preliminary final result will not be announced before ‘Massud Day’ on 9 September.

Luftangriff am Fluss (Air Assault at the River)
die tageszeitung (Berlin), 5 September 2009
AAN’s Thomas Ruttig describes the NATO attack on two tankers hijacked by Taleban in Kunduz province and Ulrike Winkelmann describes the reaction of the German authorities after allegations that many civilians were killed.

Caught in a swirl of deceit
Sydney Morning Herald, 5 September 2009
On the fraud clouding the Afghan elections, AAN’s Martine van Bijlert warns that if President Karzai does not acknowledge ‘what happened, people will see his next term as more of the same.’

Der große Betrug am Hindukusch (The Great Fraud in the Hindukush)
Neues Deutschland (Berlin), 4 September 2009
In a report from Kabul, AAN’s Thomas Ruttig calls the international community to come out with clear words and to initiate an Afghan all-party conference including democratic and non-armed politial forces.

Afghanistan after the Elections; What Next?
Carnegie Endowment presentation (transcript), 3 September 2009
Martine van Bijlert’s article on Imaginary Institutions in Afghanistan was quoted during a Carnegie Endowment event.

NOS Acht Uur Journaal (Netherlands 8 o’ clock news)
NOS Journaal, 3 September 2009 (probably temporary link).
Martine van Bijlert is interviewed on the electoral fraud in Afghanistan. Featuring complaining tribal elder (“In our area nobody voted, but at the end of the day the boxes were all full for Karzai”).

More troops ‘no help’ for Afghanistan, Vendrell
Radio Australia, 3 September 2009
Interview with AAN’s advisory board member Amb. Francesc Vendrell

EU Minister for Foreign Affairs Carl Bildt visits Afghanistan (and meets AAN)
Swedish Presidency of the European Union. 2 September 2009.
An brief overview of Carl Bildt’s program in Kabul makes mention of a dinner with AAN.

Excuse me, Carlotta, but…
Angry Arab News Service, 1 September 2009
The Angry Arab quotes Carlotta Gall quoting Martine van Bijlert, and suggests that Carlotta declared the election a success on the first day.

Afghan Elections 2009: Milestone for Progress or Mirror of Malaise?
Blog on Norwegian Peace Building Centre website, 1 September 2009.
Article quotes Martine van Bijlert’s blog featuring a voter who remarks: “Ask any shepherd in the mountains who the next king will be and he will say: whoever the West supports. Ask the leaders of the biggest parties, they will say the same. The vote has no value.”


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