Suspected Opium Dealer Brother of Afghan President also a CIA Spy?

October 28, 2009

(ChattahBox) — It was recently revealed in her memoir that Juanita Castro, the younger sister of Cuban leaders Fidel and Raul Castro, worked for the CIA during some crucial years of the Cold War. Now it looks like the feds are keeping tabs via family ties in Afghanistan too.  The New York Times reports that Ahmed Wali Karzai, younger brother of Afghan President Hamid Karzai (photo left), has been on the CIA payroll for the past eight years, according to unnamed U.S. officials. Ahmed is a dubious choice to be a spy. He is long suspected of playing a major role in the country’s opium trade, and some say may have had a hand in the Afghan election fraud. However, the CIA has long favored cooperating with local warlords, many of whom it helped to fight the Soviets, regardless of their alleged role in war crimes or the drugs trade.

And Ahmed does supposedly provide a variety of services, including helping to recruit the Kandahar Strike Force, an Afghan paramilitary force that operates under CIA direction in and around the southern city of Kandahar, Mr. Karzai’s home. The strike force is said to counter suspected insurgents and terrorists. Officials also say that Ahmed acts as a go-between for the U.S. and the Taliban. Critics say that America’s ties with Ahmed undermines America’s effort to develop a stable and independent central Afghan governing body and bolsters the Taliban’s arguments that President Hamid Karzai is simply a puppet (albeit a very corrupt one) of the U.S. government. Ahmed, has denied receiving any such payments from the CIA, and a CIA spokesman refused to confirm or deny the claims which are highly embarrassing for President Karzai and the US Government.


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