Backpedaling

Karzai Apologizes for U.S. Critique

After attacking the U.S. and U.N. for contributing to his perceived election fraud, Afghan President Hamid Karzai has phoned Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to apologize, saying that his criticism was meant instead for Western media coverage of the elections. The White House had called the speech "troubling" and a source said "he initiated the call after learning there was great consternation in Washington." After stressing to Karzai that U.S. officials couldn't control American news coverage, Clinton told Karzai: "We’re prepared to stay focused on the work ahead." A source said of the conversation, “they pledged to continue working together."