Afghan Elections

Karzai Accused of Treason

Is Afghanistan the new Iran? Last month's Afghan elections were plagued by charges of wide-spread vote rigging, and opposition leader Abdullah Abdullah, the country's former foreign minister, wants President Hamid Karzai criminally investigated for "state-engineered fraud." Abdullah also accused Karzai of treason in an interview with The Times of London. In the elections, Karzai squeaked by with more than 50 percent of the vote, allowing him to avoid a run-off, although a U.N.-backed elections watchdog ordered Afghanistan's Independent Elections Commission to start a recount last week after saying it unearthed "clear and convincing evidence of fraud." The recount could take months, by which time harsh winter conditions in Afghanistan would preclude another election until spring, leaving the country rudderless in the meantime.