President Trump showed this week at the United Nations that he is not playing games. He is out protect America and our allies. That said, the United States is considering dropping Pakistan as an ally, according to the Financial Times. They report that President Donald J. Trump’s administration is considering the move, as they examine measures to stamp out more than 20 terrorist groups based in the country.
The Financial Times reports: “Officials familiar with the Pakistan prong of Washington’s new ‘AfPak’ strategy — which involves an open-ended commitment in Afghanistan and praise for India — say it has yet to be fleshed out.”
Last month, during his first prime-time address, which focused on the war in Afghanistan, President Donald Trump accused Pakistan of housing terrorists.
“We have been paying Pakistan billions and billions of dollars, at the same time they are housing the same terrorists that we are fighting,” President Trump noted. “That will have to change.”
The speech marked a fresh approach to the United States’ relationship with the duplicitous nation of Pakistan.
In the wake of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage said the U.S. would bomb Pakistan “back to the Stone Age” unless it became a counterterrorism partner. Pakistan’s president at the time, General Pervez Musharraf, agreed to do so.
However, the Pakistani government, under Musharraf, and then his successors, promised to continue cooperating with Washington in Afghanistan and elsewhere if America supplied it with military and foreign aid. They argued that without such support, they would have a weakened government, setting the stage for the empowerment of radicals.
Over the years, since the U.S.’ invasion of Afghanistan, the arrangement has led to $30 billion in aid from America. For its part, Pakistan has fought against extremist groups which threaten its own security, but it has also fueled the flames of extremism abroad, hoping to affect events in Afghanistan and India.
The South Asia Terrorism Portal, a terrorism research institute in India, noted, “The Pakistani establishment has, for long, provided open support to terrorist formations which has served its purported strategic interests.”
In his address, President Trump said that the United States “can no longer be silent about Pakistan’s safe havens for terrorist organizations, the Taliban, and other groups that pose a threat to the region and beyond.”
According to USA Today, these include jihadi groups like Jaish-e-Mohammed, Lashkar e-Taiba and Harakat-ul-Mujahideen, “all of which are actively backed by Pakistan’s notorious Inter-Services Intelligence.”
The president’s comments marked the most public break in support for Pakistan. According to the Financial Times:
“’No US president has come out on American national television and said such things about Pakistan,’ said Husain Haqqani, former Pakistan ambassador to the US.
“‘US policymakers are at the end of their tethers about what they see as Pakistan not helping them while promising to help them.’
“The administration has already put $255m in military aid on hold after Mr. Trump announced the policy shift. It is eyeing an escalating series of threats, which include cutting some civilian aid, conducting unilateral drone strikes on Pakistani soil and imposing travel bans on suspect officers of the ISI, the country’s intelligence agency. It could also revoke Pakistan’s status as a major non-Nato ally or designate it a state sponsor of terrorism.
“The latter options would limit weapons sales and probably affect billions of dollars in IMF and World Bank loans, along with access to global finance….”
H/T: Jihad Watch
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