We spent over $300 million to perpetrate a fraudulent election in Afghanistan, with the record of fraud actively covered up by the U.N. mission in Afghanistan.
In July, I came to the realization that the greatest risk to the Afghan elections was from “ghost” polling stations, that is polling centers sited in areas so insecure that the centers would never open. In coordination with the Ambassadors from the US, UK, EU and NATO, I pressed the Afghan Ministers of Defense and Interior either to secure these polling centers or to close them.
The Afghan Ministers, whose continued tenure in office was to depend on the fraud, complained about my intervention and Kai ordered me to drop the matter. As it turned out, most of the electoral fraud occurred in these ghost polling centers.
At considerable personal risk, UNAMA field staff collected data on turnout and fraud. Our data showed a miniscule turnout in key Southern Provinces, but these provinces were to report a large number of votes for Karzai.
Once it became clear to Kai that the output from our election center would be deeply disturbing to President Karzai, he ordered the staff not to share the data with anyone, including the Afghan institutions charged with preserving the integrity of the electoral process.
President Karzai had the Foreign Minister protest my supposed interference in the electoral process and, as you know, the Afghanistan Permanent Representative threatened to have me expelled from the country.
Kai sided with Karzai in this matter, seemingly indifferent to fact that these fraudulent ballots were the ones that put Karzai over 50%.
Peter W. Galbraith — WHAT I SAW AT THE AFGHAN ELECTION — U.N. Isn’t Addressing Fraud in Afghan Election – washingtonpost.com
Before firing me last week from my post as his deputy special representative in Afghanistan, U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon conveyed one last instruction: Do not talk to the press. In effect, I was being told to remain a team player after being thrown off the team. Nonetheless, I agreed.
For weeks, Eide had been denying or playing down the fraud in Afghanistan’s recent presidential election, telling me he was concerned that even discussing the fraud might inflame tensions in the country.
As many as 30 percent of Karzai’s votes were fraudulent, and lesser fraud was committed on behalf of other candidates.
In several provinces, including Kandahar, four to 10 times as many votes were recorded as voters actually cast.
The fraud has handed the Taliban its greatest strategic victory in eight years of fighting the United States and its Afghan partners.
The election was a foreseeable train wreck.
this balloting was managed by Afghanistan’s Independent Election Commission (IEC). Despite its name, the commission is subservient to Karzai, who appointed its seven members
The United States and other Western nations paid the more than $300 million to hold the vote
In July, I learned that at least 1,500 polling centers (out of 7,000) were to be located in places so insecure that no one from the IEC, the Afghan National Army or the Afghan National Police had ever visited them.
Local commission staff members were hardly experienced election professionals; in many instances they were simply agents of the local power brokers, usually aligned with Karzai.
If no independent observers or candidate representatives, let alone voters, could even visit the listed location of a polling center, these IEC staffers could easily stuff ballot boxes without ever taking them to the assigned location. Or they could simply report results without any votes being in the ballot boxes.
Along with ambassadors from the United States and key allies, I met with the Afghan ministers of defense and the interior as well as the commission’s chief election officer. We urged them either to produce a credible plan to secure these polling centers (which the head of the Afghan army had told me was impossible) or to close them down. Not surprisingly, the ministers — who served a president benefiting from the fraud — complained that I had even raised the matter.
Eide ordered me not to discuss the ghost polling centers any further.
On Election Day, these sites produced hundreds of thousands of phony Karzai votes.
At other critical stages in the election process, I was similarly ordered not to pursue the issue of fraud.
Eide ordered us not to share this data with anyone, including the Electoral Complaints Commission, a U.N.-backed Afghan institution legally mandated to investigate fraud.
A former senior United Nations diplomat in Kabul has made a scathing attack on the UN’s handling of Afghanistan‘s disputed elections, claiming that almost one in three of the votes cast for president Hamid Karzai were fraudulent.
Peter Galbraith, the former deputy head of the UN mission in Afghanistan, singled out his former chief, Kai Eide, for criticism, saying he had deliberately played down the level of cheating in an election where, in one region, “10 times as many votes were recorded as voters actually cast”.
Galbraith was sacked last week, after his disagreements with Eide, a Norwegian diplomat in charge of the UN mission, about how to deal with electoral fraud became public.
The election was a “foreseeable train wreck”, he said, with Eide standing idle as Afghan election authorities and ministers loyal to the president avoided taking steps that could have reduced massive fraud.
On Saturday Abdullah accused Eide of “giving a green card for fraud to determine the outcome of the election”.
A Canadian Perspective
The firing of its No. 2 official in Afghanistan shows how far the world body will go to cover up the fraudulent August election
The United Nations and Secretary General Ban Ki-moon have just made a mockery of the notion of free and fair elections by firing Peter Galbraith, the second-in-command at the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA).
The UN staff … along with the EU Observation Mission … considers close to 1.5 million out of five million votes cast to be fraudulent
The fear is that addressing the spirit of a free and fair election now might further weaken governance and destabilize the country, and bring international failure in Afghanistan more starkly out in the open. Thus, the UN wants a compromise.
It is suggested Afghanistan does not need a true election, it has never had a democracy.
A sham of an election as a “start” is considered good enough for Afghans, who after all know no better. It seems protecting the image of the UN is the priority.
The UN action is damaging to the very concept of democracy. The UN has failed to retain its neutrality in this election to protect its own interest. It has violated the accountability principle.
The UNAMA has violated the trust of the international community, which includes the tax-paying public of the countries that contributed to this pool of funds.
It would be interesting to see how our own government explains to the Canadian public the objective of our mission in Afghanistan at this point.
Does the election fiasco affect our Afghanistan mission objectives (which remain muddled at best, in any case); and how do we accommodate addressing Canadian values while we’re in Afghanistan, one of our foreign policy objectives?
Or do we simply join the UN “cover-up” process, undermining not only Canadian values and democratic principles but the Afghan population, which deserves a legitimate government confirmed through an open, free and fair process of election?