Jabbar Sabit and the “Airport Mystery”

Attorney General Sabit in his office - courtesy of Skyreporter

Some time back this blog gave a ringing endorsement of Afghanistan’s Attorney General Abdul Jabbar Sabit and the job he was doing as the country’s anti-corruption czar. (see Fighting the Good Fight…)
In fact, carried away by the relative success of his methods (albeit rather extreme, but then again we are talking about Afghanistan where corruption has also hit extreme levels) the post likened him to the crusading NY Attorney General Elliot Spitzer.

Well, these are not good days to be an Attorney General anywhere.

In a revealing bit of investigative journalism, and against numerous and powerful obstacles (including high officials from a myriad of governments) SkyReporter’s Arthur Kent goes behind the scenes to ask some tough questions about Attorney General Sabit, his background as a key Hekmatyar ally, his recent decision to fire the head of Kabul Airport security, and his potential entanglement in a drug trafficking scandal.

While our endorsement of Jabbar Sabit stands as far as his much needed “jihad” against anti-corruption is concerned, for a balancing view read/watch SkyReporter’s Oh Canada! , True North , and Afghan Heroin Series.

Here are some excerpts:

…The scandal of heroin trafficking at Kabul Airport is a perfect example. As I’ve pieced the story together, it’s been remarkable how obstacle after obstacle looms on the horizon. Mysteriously, most of these investigative roadblocks aren’t thrown up by the drug gangs, but by the authorities. Not just by shadowy figures at the top of Hamid Karzai’s Afghan government, but by American and British officials, too….

Canadian officials are evading questions about the man at the centre of the Kabul Airport heroin trafficking scandal, Afghan Attorney General Abdul Jabar Sabet, who is also a resident of Montreal…

Last autumn Sabet suspended Amerkel from his post as police chief of Kabul Airport. Several law enforcement sources in the capital confirm that the flow of smuggled heroin increased after Amerkhel’s removal. (Please see the AFGHAN HEROIN series of film reports at skyreporter.com)

President Karzai’s shadowy, accident-prone Attorney General continues to wreak controversy with botched investigations, with alleged criminality by at least one of his senior appointees, and with his own failure to take on top-level abuses of power.

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One Response to Jabbar Sabit and the “Airport Mystery”

  1. subadei says:

    This isn’t directly related to the above but this post is the most pertinent I could find to pose my question.

    American and NATO forces have instilled something of an anti-opiate strategy in Afghanistan (as you obviously are aware of) in hopes of curtailing both corruption and fiscal support for the Taliban. Much of this strategy has been focused on the poppy farms of Afghanistan. My question:

    Is it wise to alienate and bankrupt so many? Isn’t this strategy likely to increase support for the Taliban and alienate US/NATO forces as “occupiers” rather than “liberators” throughout the tribal “frontier” of Afghanistan? I’d like your thoughts on this.

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