Telegraph – Hamid Karzai gets tough with Lord Ashdown, by David Blair

Of the 10 men who have served as Afghanistan’s president in the past three decades, four were murdered and one strung up from a lamppost and disembowelled.

Bear this in mind when you judge President Hamid Karzai’s erratic behaviour and his abrupt withdrawal of support for Lord Ashdown’s appointment as UN envoy in Kabul. The former Lib Dem leader knows from personal experience that the worst possible fate for a British politician is swift elevation to the House of Lords.