Thursday, May 24, 2007
Brother of Conservative star says “Harper is protecting a corrupt regime in Afghanistan”
In the same week that Harper turned Afghanistan into the backdrop for his “Everything’s Alright Here” Tour, Arthur Kent, the outspoken journalist -- and incidentally the brother of Harper’s star candidate in Thornhill – offered a devastating critique of the mission that the Conservative Party is wedded to.
Arthur Kent has been in Afghanistan for years reporting for his internet news service http://www.skyreporter.com/. Yesterday he told CTV Newsnet yesterday that Harper is fighting a war to rid Afghanistan of one treacherous regime only to replace it with another:
“The prime minister is not taking appropriate care to ensure that the government in Kabul, which is the real hope of the Afghan people and the essential component to any success in Afghanistan is cleaned – cleared up of corruption and made more effective and responsive to the Afghanistan people . . . If Prime Minister Harper really wants to support the troops, and Lord knows they deserve that support, then Prime Minister Harper has got to get some very senior people in to Kabul and start cleaning up that rat’s nest known as the Karzai regime.”
This is not the first warning that the structures of Afghan governance are corrupt. Indeed, legislator Malalai Joya was kicked out of the Afghan legislature this week for saying those same things. But having Kent level this kind of attack on the very raison d'etre of the mission while his own brother is preparing to press the flesh for Harper at the summer hot-dog circuit brings the criticism much closer to where the Conservatives will have to respond to it.