U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan nominee Ryan Crocker said progress in Afghanistan has been significant but is still fragile and reversible. “We have an interest in ensuring that the country (Afghanistan) doesn’t back slide and that it just again doesn’t become an Al Qaeda safe haven.” He also said the U.S. does not seek any permanent bases in Afghanistan and that “you cannot really succeed in Afghanistan without a fair measure of success in Pakistan.”
He made these remarks at his Senate Foreign Relations Committee confirmation hearing.
President Obama nominated him on April 28 at a White House ceremony to replace retired Army Lt. Gen. Karl Eikenberry. Mr. Crocker served as U.S. Ambassador five times including Pakistan (2004-07), Syria (1998-2001), Kuwait (1994-97), Lebanon (1990-1993) and most recently in Iraq (2007-09) in the George W. Bush Administration. Mr. Crocker currently is the dean at the George H.W. Bush School of Government & Public Service at Texas A&M University.
The Committee released a report yesterday, “Evaluating U.S. Foreign Assistance to Afghanistan” The panel's Democrats issued the report that says stabilization programs in Afghanistan have had limited success. The $18.8 billion spent over 10 years is more than the United States has spent in any other country, including Iraq.