Karzai needs to take the Umreekis along, including giving some concessions with respect to mining contracts.
Defiance will only lead to a greater reliance by the US on the ISI.
But one can also say that Karzai's defiance is caused by continuing molly-coddling of the ISI by the US. The US needs to put its cards down on the table, stop its dalliance with the Pak Army.
Western elites favored Karzai over Abdullah Abdullah in the election, and now they are finding that Karzai is not sufficiently subservient.
Some prominent Afghans say that Mr. Karzai now tells associates that the Americans’ goal here is not to build an independent and peaceful Afghanistan, but to exercise their power.
In January, Mr. Karzai invited about two dozen prominent Afghan media and business figures to a lunch at the palace. At the lunch, he expressed a deep cynicism about America’s motives, and of the burden he bears in trying to keep the United States at bay.
“He has developed a complete theory of American power,” said an Afghan who attended the lunch and who spoke on the condition of anonymity for fear of retribution. “He believes that America is trying to dominate the region, and that he is the only one who can stand up to them.”
Mr. Karzai said that, left alone, he could strike a deal with the Taliban, but that the United States refuses to allow him. The American goal, he said, was to keep the Afghan conflict going, and thereby allow American troops to stay in the country.
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/30/world ... l?ref=asia
Here is a possible solution to the mess that might satisfy both the Afghans and Americans:
* Talibs reconcile with Karzai and the US, and accept long-term presence of some US troops, as in Japan or South Korea.
* An independent Balochistan for access to Afghanistan
* Afghans and Balochis play ball with the US with respect to pipelines and minerals
* As a corollary, the US totally abandons the illegitimate and artificial state of Pak, leading to its demise due to economic reasons and internal strife.
* Area controlled by the Pakjabi military-jihadist elites dissolves into 6 or 7 independent nations, most of which enter into a South Asian Economic Union.
But all this first requires the US to abandon the long-standing policy of propping up the Paks to put a leash on India. That wrong policy is keeping the whole region unsettled.