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Afghan opinion of Germany worsens

DDP/The Local · 11 Jan 2010, 15:44

Published: 11 Jan 2010 15:44 GMT+01:00

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The number of Afghans in the northern and northeastern regions of the country who hold a positive opinion of Germany dropped 11 percentage points in the last year to 63 percent, according to the study for German broadcaster ARD, along with US broadcaster ABC and the UK's BBC.

About 1,100 of Germany's 4,300 troops in the country are stationed in the north as part of the NATO mission, and the Bundeswehr is generally considered to be responsible for safety in the area. But the debate over the German-ordered bombardment of two tanker trucks hijacked by the Taliban in the region in September 2009 – and the fact that it killed up to 150 people, many of them civilians – has apparently soured the local opinion of Germany, Arnd Henze from ARD affiliate WDR said.

Henze helped lead the survey of some 1,554 Afghans, who revealed that they were also unhappy that the region had become more dangerous after several years of relative peace.

In 2009, some 72 percent of poll participants said the security situation was positive – but in 2010 only 43 percent held this opinion. For the first time since the poll began was this level was under the country average, results showed.

But the poll also found that Afghans have a more positive general outlook in 2010 than in 2009. Some 70 percent said their country was on the right path – and increase of 30 percent compared to the previous year. And the number of people who said their children would have a better future rose by 14 percent to reach 61 percent.

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One of the biggest factors contributing to their optimism was due to improvements in quality of life – particularly the increased availability of electricity. But many said medical care, clean water and educational opportunities were still greatly lacking.

The poll was conducted by the Afghan Centre for Socio-Economic and Opinion Research in late December 2009.

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Your comments about this article

16:29 January 11, 2010 by dbert4
Wow, and what do you think that the, "local opinion" of Germans toward Afghanistan has likewise been soured? You bet your ass it has!
16:35 January 11, 2010 by Henckel
As the saying goes, "Tell me something I don't know"!!!
17:03 January 11, 2010 by Celeon
Frankly, i never gave anything on those polls.

How much do they tell you? Afghans have a more positive outlook in early 2010 than in 2009 ? That alone should tell you that something isnt right with those polls.

Why should they have a more positive outlook? Has something wonderful happened in the last months? Nope. There were some ups and downs and now they are basically still as knee deep into it as they were the year before.

It does not make sense as there is, beside spontaneous optimism, no reason to say that they are better off.

Violence has increased , Taliban operation have increased. The security situation has stagnated and even slightly worsened in some reasons.

Every Afghan who said he thinks he is better off than in the beginning of 2009 was either drunk ,dilusional or a Taliban himself when he participated in the poll.

So, what meaning has it when the same people tell you who they like and who not. Lets be honest.

These people are largely dependent on help and therefore they are opportunists by nature.

Thats not meant to be a insult , its just a logical fact of survival that they will always be best friends of those that can offer them something at the moment.

I also never bought into this "Afghans like Germans more than others" story.

They propably tell everyone they like him the most that is there at the moment in hope to get something out of it for themselves.

You have a german camp near you? Tell anybody who asks how much you like the germans and maybe they come over and install you a new waterpump or something. Otherwise they may not come. Who knows?

Really , i doubt that any poll over there recieves really objective answers so do not interpret too much importance into them
17:34 January 11, 2010 by cleavage
"opinion polls" mean absolutely nothing. There is no reason to be in Afghanistan as the lie to get us there needs investigation. We do not want to be occupiers. I support the troops by questioning what the heck they are doing there and bringing them home... now.
19:24 January 11, 2010 by DavEd
Quote: "revealed that they were also unhappy that the region had become more dangerous after several years of relative peace."

Quote: "what the heck they are doing there and bringing them home... now. "

The two statements correlate in the sense that they are absolutely correct. Germans aren't allowed to fight so what is the point in having your troops there? To pass out chewing gum to the locals?

The German government can't even admit that there is a war in the region.

Germany places all other NATO forces in jeopardy by allowing the enemy to run freely, where and whenever they choose.

Yes! Get out, and get out of NATO too! The sooner the better.

Go sign up with Medvedev's plan for a new European Security Aggreement.
22:10 January 11, 2010 by wxman
That's it! Time to pullout. Wouldn't want to disappoint the Afghans, ya know.
22:38 January 11, 2010 by wpfaeffle
All the more reason for them to get the hell out of there.
00:19 January 12, 2010 by Rolf100
I agree - the UN program in Afghanistan is not working. The UN should vote to close it down! Additionally, the US should be asked to pull all their troops back to their own national boundaries - no exceptions!

If military actions are required outside your own country ­ each country should be responsible for its actions.

We can then close NATO and the UN ­ nice tries but they do not work!
00:27 January 12, 2010 by TigerEye
Rolf100 and company,

Well said.
10:54 January 12, 2010 by michael4096
"...to 63 percent"

far higher than most europeans and americans have in their own goverments
16:34 January 12, 2010 by DavEd

Perhaps you are too young to remember the 9/11 attack on the US by al-qaeda (3000 American civilians were killed) whom the Taliban of Afghanistan gave safe haven to.

Maybe you haven't figured out the strategic importance of the Gulf of Aden and al-qaeda's increasing presence in Yemen and Somali that threaten that sea lane.

With the democratic government of Pakistan hanging on by their fingernails, Perhaps Pakistan's nuclear arsenal falling into the hands of the Taliban doesn't bother you.

War is always going to be a bloody chaotic job weather you are the defender or the aggressor.

Go home Germany, sleep well at night, the US will protect you, weather you or us like it or not.
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