Congressman McNerney in Afghanistan, meets with President Karzai

Describes streets of Kabul as crowded with 'bustling marketplaces'

Congressman Jerry McNerney (D-Pleasanton) is in Afghanistan meeting with President Karzai and military leaders.

The Congressman was asked to travel to the war-torn country to assess the situation on the ground first hand.

He sent the following report to the Pleasanton Weekly:

I'm writing to you from Kabul, Afghanistan where I've traveled as part of a bipartisan congressional delegation. I've come here to see for myself the current state of affairs in Afghanistan, ask questions of our military leaders and the Afghan government and spend time with our men and women in uniform.

It's now the end of a whirlwind day of activity, and I'm glad to have a moment to reflect on my experiences and share my thoughts with you.

When I landed in Kabul today the weather was hazy and cool. We left the airport and traveled through Kabul and points near the city where we saw a number of Afghan civilians along the roads and in crowded and bustling marketplaces. The majority of the people on the streets of Kabul were men, but there were women out in the city as well and some were not dressed in full burkas, a change from rule under the Taliban. With so much conflict throughout the country and region, it was heartening to see day-to-day activity continuing and an active local economy.

Shortly after we arrived, we went to meet with President Karzai. The offices of the president were modest and the congressional delegation was joined by senior advisers to the Afghan government as well as other presidential staff. The visit was an opportunity for the congressional delegation to question him about the country's political and economic situation.

Karzai laid out the challenges in Afghanistan as he viewed them, and we had an opportunity to discuss a wide range of issues. I pressed him directly about his commitment to ending corruption, which I consider essential to both America's military support for his country, and for the ultimate success of democracy in Afghanistan. Karzai acknowledged that serious problems still exist and more needs to be done to address the situation.

After our meeting, I visited with soldiers stationed here, including several Californians. They told me about their families, and I could tell how much they miss everyone back home. They are very proud to be serving their country and showed a lot of enthusiasm for their work. I shared with them how much we appreciate their sacrifice.

Over the next days, I'll continue on with the congressional delegation's travel to other parts of the country and discussions with our senior military leaders on the president's proposal for our involvement in the region.

We have many difficult decisions ahead about sending additional troops to Afghanistan. I'm grateful for the opportunity to see firsthand the situation and use what I've learned here to make informed decisions in the coming months.

I hope to see many of you soon after my return home and look forward to sharing more about my trip.

(If you'd like to share your thoughts with the Congressman, email him directly at

We can't do it without you.
Support local journalism.


Like this comment
Posted by Steve
a resident of Highland Oaks
on Dec 28, 2009 at 4:25 pm

Maybe Jerry is scouting out opportunities for his next job, since starting January of 2011 he'll be out of office (thanks for your healthcare vote again!)

Like this comment
Posted by Margaret
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 28, 2009 at 4:47 pm

Steve...good point. However, McNerney will be able to keep his seat unless people like you, me and many others campaign to replace him.

McNerney has George Soros money, ACORN, democrat designed districting, along with the Pleasanton Weekly Editor and Pleasanton Mayor, along with approx. 39% of his district voting democrat on his side.

Perhaps McNerney's visit to Afghanistan will wake him up to actually support the military vs. voting against funding them as he has done in the past.

McNerney's voting record in favor of jobs killing Obamacare, Cap & Trade, TARP and others reflect his socialistic and economy-destroying philosophy.

Like this comment
Posted by Susan
a resident of Civic Square
on Dec 28, 2009 at 5:35 pm

Well, schools are closed. His speciality is photo ops with school children and vets. What's he to do ??? He certainly doesn't have to stay home to bone up on anything. He just votes how Pelosi's staffers tell him to vote.

Like this comment
Posted by Susan
a resident of Civic Square
on Dec 28, 2009 at 5:35 pm

Well, schools are closed. His speciality is photo ops with school children and vets. What's he to do ??? He certainly doesn't have to stay home to bone up on anything. He just votes how Pelosi's staffers tell him to vote.

Like this comment
Posted by common sense
a resident of Val Vista
on Dec 28, 2009 at 10:02 pm

I guess, money is not object. Spend Spend Spend, as if our congressman going to Afghanistan makes one rats ass difference, I hope he enjoyed the trip

Like this comment
Posted by Jerry
a resident of Oak Hill
on Dec 29, 2009 at 12:10 am

Talking to Afgans in relatively "safe areas" that tell him what he wants to hear doesn't cut it. He should attach himself to a combat unit (that puts it on the line 24/7) for a couple days, then he can report to us what's really happening and perhaps he would have a real appreciation for what they do, not some lip service to justify the trip...

Politicians should stay home and let the military commanders conduct the war operations...

Like this comment
Posted by judy
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jan 5, 2010 at 3:40 pm

Afghanistan? That's where the slick-talkin' terrorist...who pretended to be a helpful informant and double-agent for the US.. So being nice, politically correct Americans, SEVEN of our most experienced, most valuable US CIA agents, just waved him INTO their base (after all they had 'talked' with him before). So he murdered our 7 mid-east CIA agents ! ! ! ! ! ! ! That was after Christmas...wasn't Jerry there then ?? He should give us an Afgani report.

Like this comment
Posted by Kelly
a resident of Canyon Meadows
on Jan 15, 2010 at 2:24 am

Join the movement! Visit []

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

Be the first to know

Get the latest headlines sent straight to your inbox every day.

Couples: Reading List
By Chandrama Anderson | 0 comments | 1,186 views

New Donlon school is at least four years away
By Tim Hunt | 1 comment | 776 views