October 20, 2009

Quotes of the Day

"We believe that this decision of the IEC is legitimate, legal and constitutional and that it strengthens the path towards democracy."

- Afghan President Hamid Karzai, on accepting a runoff

"President Karzai and the other candidates have shown that they have the interests of the Afghan people at heart. This is a reflection of a commitment to the rule of law and the insistence that the Afghan people's will should be done."

- President Obama, on Karzai's announcement after speaking with him by phone

"President Karzai really deeply believes he had won the election and that the international community was kind of conspiring to push for a different outcome. He had people within his government, people within the election commission who felt they were being insulted about putting together a faulty election process... There were a lot of very deep feelings about Afghanistan's right to run its election, its competency in running it and so forth."

- Senator John Kerry, on his meeting with Karzai

"There is every indication that the Obama administration favors a unity government rather than another vote. I think the most likely outcome is a unity government, but a government that will take a long time to put together, may not be very strong and will not be necessarily a very effective partner given the internal disagreements within that government."

- Zalmay Khalilzad, former US ambassador to Afghanistan and power player, on the future from Kabul

“It is not going to be complicated one day and simple the next. I believe the president will have to make his decisions in the context of that evolutionary process.”

- Defense Secretary Robert Gates, ticking the clock on President Obama's troop verdict

"I am relieved that this short-lived attempt to control the media and the public's right to know has come to an end. It's always been my belief that the American people should see the hard reality of our wars in Iraq and Afghanistan."

- Louise M. Slaughter, D-N.Y., chairwoman of the House Rules Committee, on the Pentagon's reversal to allow public photos of US soldiers killed in action

“The Government is dealing with the refugees like the Israelis’ attitude to the Palestinians."

- Saleh Shah, senator from South Waziristan, on the current operation

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