During the Paris Conference, the states involved in Afghanistan evinced to pass full responsibility over the rebuilding of the country to the government in Kabul. While this policy appears to have no alternative, it leads to a somewhat problematic situation in view of the declining support of the government in the population. Thus, on the one hand, the capacities of the leadership in Kabul have to be strengthened despite its lack of popular esteem; on the other hand, the national control organs over corruption and mismanagement have to be expanded.
At the same time, the strengthening of the Afghan government does not mean that the commitment of the international community can be reduced – just the opposite: The expansion of the army and the police has to be pushed more determinedly, particularly in cooperation with the US, and the coordination between civilian and military measures must be improved in the long-run.
This policy should be supported through a pragmatic cooperation with Iran: Europe should attempt to cooperate with Teheran with regard to the drug trade and the repatriation of refugees, disregarding the conflict over the Iranian nuclear programme. Pakistan, in turn, should be supported in regaining control over its western territories, without NATO or the US intervening directly.
Overall, multiple expectations have proven to have been exorbitant on Afghanistan. The international community should reduce its goals accordingly and develop a better feeling for what can be expected of the local population.