Shortly after the fall of the Taliban, Hamid Karzai was picked to be Afghanistan's interim leader. At the time, he seemed to be a good choice: He's a Pashtun from Kandahar; he came from a good family; his father was a highly respected leader; and the young Karzai displayed an optimism and a patriotism for this country. But over the years, Karzai has proved to be both a wily politician and a difficult ally for the U.S. Those who have known and worked with him over the years say Karzai is a troubled man who can hold a grudge. Others say he's been tasked with almost impossible goals, including erasing rampant corruption and trying to create a robust central government. Now into his second -- and final -- term in office, Karzai is concentrating on his legacy. That doesn't make him any easier to handle as the U.S. tries to implement its new strategy in Afghanistan.
Related NPR Stories:
Copyright NPR. View this article on npr.org.