USA and Pakistan, Best Friends?
It was reported that President Trump just had a telephone conversation with PM Nawaz Sharif of Pakistan, where he over-praised Sharif and Pakistan and promised to assist him in any way he could.
For many years, Pakistan was a staunch ally of the US, especially against the USSR during the cold war years and joined the pro American Cento and Seto alliances. Thereafter, it assisted the US in creating, training and supporting the Mujahedin in Afghanistan against the Soviets who were backing the Afghani government.
After the collapse of the USSR and their evacuation of Afghanistan, Pakistan’s importance shrank, reaching its nadir in the 1970’s when it was discovered to have an atom bomb. The US stopped all aid to Pakistan as well as slapped it with strict sanctions.
The US need for Pakistan arose again after 9/11. It needed their help against the Taliban and Osama bin Laden’s “Al Qaeda”. Thus again, sweet talk, aid and military support flooded Pakistan – even designating it as a major non-NATO ally!
A few years later, mutual criticism erupted over the war on terrorism. The US wasn’t satisfied that Pakistan was doing its best, and Pakistan was angry with US blatant violation of its sovereignty by its continuous drone strikes on the Taliban inside Pakistan. It culminated with the raid and killing of Osama bin Laden at his secure large villa in Pakistan, which triggered mutual recrimination between both countries.
Then, Obama suddenly switched US love towards India. His “Pivot to Asia” policy needed to be beefed-up with local participants, to camouflage his dangerous challenge to China in the South China Sea.
So, what exactly is the US seeking from Pakistan this time? Does it want Pakistan to reduce its involvement in OBOR (the new China Silk Road)? Not get closer to Russia, or buy Russian weapons? And how accommodating will Pakistan be?
Will India sit back and calmly watch this amour develop, while tensions are building up in Kashmir?
Let us hope that the US is not about to embark on one of its classical regional disruption schemes.