Or shall we say good riddance to the man who has held so much power in Afghanistan over the last thirteen years, yet done nothing to secure its future prosperity? The outgoing Afghan President on Tuesday blamed the United States for war, the country that helped bring him to power. And Pakistan for the continued Taliban insurgency, the country that helped end the Cold War in Afghanistan. He said, “No peace will arrive unless the US or Pakistan want it.” Mr. Karzai, you give us too much credit. If peace was in our reach, would we not have managed to achieve it first ourselves? While India gets the best deals based on economic logic, Pakistan has inherited from Afghanistan the Taliban legacy, mistrust, wagging fingers and 2 million refugees.

Pakistan has made major mistakes with its policy towards Afghanistan, but cannot be blamed for all its ills. As units in an international system, ultimately countries have to be strong enough to stand for themselves. Blaming the other does nothing for development and progress and continues to keep enmity and dependency alive. Karzai's show of bravado against the US and Pakistan was only because his time is over. The man has had a rocky career and said what he could to appear heroic. This is the face he had put on his failures. President Ghani would be wise to be more diplomatic in his treatment of the neighbour and the creditor because the Taliban are here to stay whether the US leave or not. On Thursday, Taliban forces captured and beheaded 12 family members of local and national police and burned down 60 homes in Ghazni.

Had our two governments been more consistent in an anti-terrorist, anti-Taliban policy, had there been more security planning and less manipulative power grabbing, had the Taliban ideology not infiltrated the military as well as society, we might both have been more stable. If only. No body has a clean shirt on, not Pakistan, not Afghanistan, not the US. In Pakistan, we are familiar with the megalomaniac politician who just wants to be King no matter what, and will say anything to skirt blame. That Karzai would bungle the future of Afghanistan and be short sighted is not a surprise and neither are his farewell statements. Pakistan and the US haven’t given any notice to his statements, and rightly so. US Ambassador Karl Eikenberry described Karzai in 2009 as, “unfamiliar with the basics of nation-building and overly self-conscious that his time in the spotlight of glowing reviews from the international community has passed.” Karzai has faced numerable corruption charges, election rigging scandals and even charges of physical intimidation of his own ministers. He has always been known to be erratic. And sadly, and maybe stereotypically, so has his country.