DEFEXPO 2022 INDIA Ministry of Defence

 

Biden’s putdown of Pakistan: More to it than meets the eye

The fact that the bulk of whatever aid goes to Pakistan is grabbed by the military and used for terrorism is of little consequence to the US, as is the fact that it was Pakistan that engineered the humiliating withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan.

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US President Joe Biden

Pakistan responded to US President Joe Biden calling Pakistan "maybe one of the most dangerous nations in the world as it has nuclear weapons without any cohesion" by summoning the US ambassador to Pakistan. While Pakistan’s foreign minister said questions about the safety of Pakistan's nuclear program were not raised during his recent meetings with the US State Department officials in Washington, a US State Department spokesperson told media, "As standard practice, we do not comment on the specifics of private diplomatic conversations."

Biden’s reference to Pakistani nukes appears to be adjunct to the hype he has been raising about nuclear war in Ukraine. Pakistani artillery ammunition picked up and packaged by the UK is reportedly being supplied to Ukraine. 

Soon after Biden became the president, the US signalled it wants to re-establish strategic ties with Pakistan. This was before conflict broke out in Ukraine. The US plan to cripple Russia militarily and economically has made it lean more on Pakistan. Pakistan helped the US in killing Al Qaeda chief Ayman al-Zawahiri by sharing his whereabouts in Afghanistan and allowing its airspace for the US drone. Despite this, the US is reportedly pumping Al Qaeda and ISS cadres to fight the Russians in Ukraine; the beauty of terrorists being available for a price.

The US sees Pakistan as useful in influencing the Central Asian Republics against Russia, as well as handling the Taliban-Haqqani network, Al Qaeda and ISIS-ISKP in Afghanistan for countering Russia, especially along Afghanistan’s northern border. In addition, the closeness with Pakistan pressures India, as the US hopes to ‘dictate’ New Delhi to curtail military and economic relations with Moscow.

Islamabad's utility to US

Pakistan has traditionally been providing ‘proxy’ boots on the ground for the US-NATO. Raising, arming and training the Mujahideen to fight the Soviets in Afghanistan, proxy boots in Iraq-Syria, raising of a brigade-sized ISKP force in Peshawar to fight in Afghanistan, plus inserting ISIS-Taliban cadres in Badakshan region on the Afghanistan-Tajikistan border, were all part of this. 

The US now possibly wants Pakistan to supply 'terrorists' for fighting in Ukraine. So, it is little wonder that US Secretary of State Antony Blinken keeps harping on America’s commitment to expanding the US-Pakistan partnership.

The USD 450-million US deal to modernize Pakistan’s F-16 fleet without informing India and justifying F-16 platforms for "counter-terrorism" is no surprise. With US blessings, the IMF also has opened its coffers for Pakistan with an immediate loan of USD 1.1 billion. Naturally, the US Secretary of State Antony Blinken keeps harping on America’s commitment to expanding the US-Pakistan partnership. 

Pressures on India

The fact that the bulk of whatever aid goes to Pakistan is grabbed by the military and used for terrorism is of little consequence to the US, as is the fact that it was Pakistan that engineered the humiliating withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan.

There is mounting concern in the American public about the enormous amount of money and arms the US is pumping into Ukraine while neglecting the price rise, inflation and energy shortages in the West. Quitting the Democratic Party, Tulsi Gabbard, who calls herself a Hindu American from Hawaii, has called a present lot of Democrats an “elite cabal of warmongers”.

Amid various pressures the Biden Administration is mounting on India, the waiting period for Indians wanting visas for visiting the US has gone up to two years compared to Chinese visitors being reportedly given visas in two days flat, which also shows how scared the US is of China. But this has angered Indian Americans also, whose Indian friends and relatives want to visit them.

Successive American presidents have openly blamed Pakistan for terrorism in Afghanistan but the US has continued to bond with Pakistan under the pretext of counter-terrorism. In the current context, Pakistan in all probability will be taken off the global financial watchdog FATF’s 'grey list' this month courtesy the Biden Administration.

(The author is an Indian Army veteran. Views are personal.)  

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Deepak Adyanthaya
Tue, 10/18/2022 - 19:16
The US will never give up Pakistan. This name calling is just intended to fool us. Pakistan is the US's hired gun. It can be conveniently used for all sorts of illegal activities because the country is an acknowledged terrorist State and no one is surprised by it's actions or atrocities, however cruel or unreasonable. In fact with sustained backing by the US, the world has come around to believing that this is an unavoidable evil the world has to live with.
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