Trump’s tirade, damage control

US president sparked off twitter spate with bold, articulate and audacious Prime Minister Imran Khan when he reiterated the allegations that he leveled in Fox News interview. Over the past 30 years, the American presidents have been dealing with docile and self-serving leadership in Pakistan. They have not interacted with Pakistani leaders who have the ability and courage to pay in the same coin.

President Trump accused Pakistan of doing nothing for the United States despite receiving billions of dollars in aid. He defended his administration move to cancel financial aid and security assistance to Pakistan, even the reimbursement of coalition support fund, the money which Pakistan had spent on war against terror from its own resources. The US President wrote on social networking site, “We no longer pay Pakistan billions of dollars because they would take our money and do nothing for us. Bin Ladden being the prime example.

In a tit for tat response, the Prime Minister took to the twitter and wrote: Trump’s false assertions add insult to injury that Pakistan has suffered in the war on terror in terms of lives lost, destabalised region and huge economic cost. He needs to be informed about historical facts. Pakistan has suffered enough fighting. Now we will do what is best for our people and interest. The Prime Minister elaborated that the US has been upset over its military failure in Afghanistan. US have failed to defeat the Taliban despite squandering billions of dollars on unwinnable war and instead finding a political end, the US continues to push for a military victory.

To dilute the fall out of President Trump outburst against Pakistan, the US establishment has done a half hearted damage control exercise. The Pentagon in apparent attempt to lessen the damage caused by their Presidents twitter outburst termed Islamabad critical partner to its South Asia policy. The statement from Pentagon comes a day after Donald Trump sparked off twitter spat with the Prime Minister Imran Khan when the former reiterated his allegations in Fox News interview a day earlier.

Colonel Rob Manning, Director of defense press operations for the US department of defense said in off-camera press conference that US and Pakistan have strong mutual interest in the region, reported NDTV. He said as you know they are critical and vital to South Asia strategy, including facilitation of peace process that would lead to stable Afghanistan. Manning also clarified that there were no change in military-t-military relationship between Pakistan and the United States.

After the first twitter outburst of President Trump a few months ago accusing Pakistan of telling lies and deciet and suspension of security assistance Pakistani military leadership had categorically made it clear that it wants bilateral relations on mutual trust and respect. Bin Laden was the US baby for which they built strong hold in Tora Bora in Afghanistan in 1980s to fight the Soviet occupation forces. It ws the United Stated which ditched Afghanistan after the withdrawal of Soviet forces in the wake of Geneva Accord. Again it was the United States which did not lent its support to the UN efforts for the transfer of power from Dr. Najeebullah regime in Kabul to Afghan Tanzimats who were described Mujahedeen by the US President Ronald Regan. Dumping the debris of failure of US foreign policy in the region at the doorsteps of Pakistan is not justifiable.

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