Pakistan feel betrayed by US: Washington Post

Pakistan feel betrayed by US: Washington Post
WASHINGTON: The new US policy towards Pakistan and its leaning towards India has generated sentiments of betrayal in the country as analysts warn, US pressure is unlikely to work and would make it difficult for it to achieve its goal of restoring peace in worn-torn Afghanistan.

US media continue to discuss the impact and fallout of the new US policy
that President Trump announced last week in which he threatened to cut aid to Pakistan while making an oft-repeating allegation that the country harbors terrorists.

Pakistan has paid a heavy price in the global fight against terrorism
with more than 60,000 people killed in bomb and suicide attacks and the economy suffering about $118 billion in direct and in-direct losses. Pakistan has repeatedly stressed that it is targeting all terrorists without discrimination and extremist elements are on the run and have found refuge in neighboring Afghanistan.

Despite being a long-term ally, the treatment given to Pakistan has
evoked a countrywide protest against President Trump and many analysts fear a downturn in bilateral relations that they say is a bad omen for common goals of peace and stability in South Asia in general and in Afghanistan in particular.

“Today, the dominant sentiments here is one of betrayal by an old
friend that owes a large debt to Pakistan,” a report by influential US newspaper the Washington Post said on Tuesday.

The report noted a wave of anti-American anger across Pakistan over
President Trump’s threat and his attempts to promote India in Afghanistan’s future.” Across the country’s political spectrum, leaders have raised a collective fist at Trump,” the report noted, who are furious that President Trump is leaning towards India against Pakistan which has a history of cooperation with the United State in foreign conflicts.

The said the allegations of terrorists sanctuaries are to destabilize
Pakistan and that the US and India want to use Afghanistan against Pakistan.
“No country in the world has done more than Pakistan to counter the
menace of terrorism,” the report quoted Chairman Senate Mian Raza Rabbani as saying.

The report observed that Pakistan is dismayed over President Trump’s
“warm embrace” of India where the current prime minister is “an ardent Hindu nationalist and Indian army troops have been waging an aggressive, months-long campaign against Muslim protesters in the disputed Kashmir region.”

“Trump’s comments about India were more unsettling for Pakistanis than
his threats to Pakistan.The U.S. calling for a deeper Indian footprint in Afghanistan sets off alarm bells across Pakistan. It will cause very real fear,” the report said quoting Michael Kugelman, a Pakistan expert at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington.

Former Interior Minister Senator Rehman Malik said that Pakistan has
sacrificed for many years to help the United States and the Afghan war has destroyed Pakistan. “We dont want anything but their respect. We are a victim of terrorism, not a cause of it. We want peace in Afghanistan, not war. Now America is befriending India at the expense of Pakistan. And that really hurts.”

Political analyst Peter S. Henne in another report published in the
Washington Post said that stabilizing Afghanistan would be much easier with a “cooperative Pakistan” and that US policymakers would be better off working out arrangements with the country.