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Ambassador Describes FBI Role in Afghanistan

Karl Eikenberry, U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan, describes the FBI's role in the U.S. mission in Afghanistan.


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All of us had our own moment on 9/11.

All of us know, of our generation, exactly where we were when the news came.

I was in the Pentagon. And so it's been very deep in me that our homeland's security is tied to the defense of Afghanistan and to getting things right in Afghanistan.

The FBI has a very unique role to play.

Of course the FBI is the bridge back to the United States of America. The FBI is the shield in the United States of America.

What 9/11 taught us is that you can't defend from the shoreline, the United States of America, against terrorism.  You have to have the shield extended globally.

They fit into a team of 16 departments and agencies of the United States government that do all this security building work, government building work, economic development work.

All great organizations, great teams. But each one different.

And I sometimes joke, especially in a setting like Afghanistan, that as U.S. Ambassador you're trying to manage 16 different United States government tribes and subtribes. And to keep them all working together.

In that regard, let's say the FBI tribe plays a very important role.

It's a highly professional organization. It's disciplined, serious, mission-oriented, always focused.

And so, as the United States Ambassador, I've got to say that when it comes to just trying to inspire all the tribes of the U.S. mission here I like to have the FBI tribe out front.