Afghan President Hamid Karzai is on a five-day visit to Japan, where he met Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan, right in photo above, and other Japanese leaders about aid and investment for Afghanistan. Karzai also met with Japanese Emperor Akihito at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo on Thursday. Last November, Japan announced it would provide approximately $5 billion over the next five years to Afghanistan and has been one of the largest donors to Afghanistan.
A Pentagon estimate that Afghanistan is home to nearly a trillion dollars in sought-after minerals is good news, but it provides no assurance that the nation is on its way to peace and productivity, says analyst Fareed Zakaria.
Zakaria told CNN he is skeptical of the idea that you could "divide $1 trillion by the population of Afghanistan to reach the conclusion that every Afghan will be rich ... the history of natural resources and mineral wealth is that it produces enormous corruption and mismanagement, and very often the money does not go down to the average person."
In the Garmser District of Helmand province, a NATO International Security Assistance Force patrol found 450 kilograms of opium in a truck and detained the driver and a passenger. FULL POST
A suicide car bomb targeting a police headquarters injured three officers and three civilians in eastern Afghanistan on Thursday, authorities said. FULL POST