TENSE RELATIONS

W.H. Mulls Canceling on Karzai

The White House will consider spiking a planned visit by Afghan President Hamid Karzai in a rebuke to his recent inflammatory statements, administration spokesman Robert Gibbs said Tuesday. Karzai has accused the United Nations and other countries of interfering with Afghanistan’s elections last year, and threatened to join the Taliban if the U.S. continues to pressure him to tamp down on corruption. Administration officials anonymously told the Associated Press that there were currently no plans to cancel the trip, but meant the threat as a "a shot across the bow”—a blunt warning to Karzai to cut it out. It’s a rare move in the cautious, careful, hyper-sensitive diplomatic world. In fact, the U.S. hopes for close cooperation with Karzai’s government in coming months as a major offensive, planned for the summer, looms. Obama and Karzai’s date is set for May 12.