Former Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai "We Afghans Are Just Being Used Against Each Other"

Former Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai, 63, on his empathy for the Taliban, his bitter disappointment with the former protective power, the United States, and why he considers the EU as his role model. He says the key to war and peace for his country, however, lies with Pakistan.
Interview Conducted by Susanne Koelbl in Kabul
Former Afghan President Hamid Karzai: "I realized early into my tenure as president that this war is not our conflict."

Former Afghan President Hamid Karzai: "I realized early into my tenure as president that this war is not our conflict."

Foto: Massoud Hossaini / AFP
About Hamid Karzai
Foto: PEDRO UGARTE/ AFP
Soviet troops pulling out of Afghanistan in 1989: "Over the past 300 years, we have always had at least two rival superpowers in our neighborhood."

Soviet troops pulling out of Afghanistan in 1989: "Over the past 300 years, we have always had at least two rival superpowers in our neighborhood."

Foto: Tass/ picture-alliance/ dpa
Karzai with U.S. President George W. Bush in 2007: "After the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks in the U.S., Washington took the historic opportunity to pursue its global ambitions in Afghanistan."

Karzai with U.S. President George W. Bush in 2007: "After the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks in the U.S., Washington took the historic opportunity to pursue its global ambitions in Afghanistan."

Foto: Larry Downing / REUTERS
Villagers looking for dead family members following a NATO strike in 2012 in the Logar province: "The U.S. was supporting both sides of the conflict at the same time."

Villagers looking for dead family members following a NATO strike in 2012 in the Logar province: "The U.S. was supporting both sides of the conflict at the same time."

Foto: Stringer Afghanistan Admin / REUTERS
The controversial border area called the Durand Line in the Kunar province: "We want an open exchange between people on both sides, without border controls, and with freedom of movement, similar to what Europeans have achieved today between Germany and France."

The controversial border area called the Durand Line in the Kunar province: "We want an open exchange between people on both sides, without border controls, and with freedom of movement, similar to what Europeans have achieved today between Germany and France."

Foto: Emran Feroz
Karzai with DER SPIEGEL reporter Susanne Koelbl in Kabul: "After the Taliban’s agreement with America, there is no longer any religious or patriotic legitimacy for them to attack their own countrymen."

Karzai with DER SPIEGEL reporter Susanne Koelbl in Kabul: "After the Taliban’s agreement with America, there is no longer any religious or patriotic legitimacy for them to attack their own countrymen."

Foto: Said Masiullah Sadat
A polling station in Kabul in 2009: How do the Afghans want to live?

A polling station in Kabul in 2009: How do the Afghans want to live?

Foto: Hadi Tabrizi / dpa