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Trump wants to punish Pakistan, experts warn against

Defence news: The Donald Trump administration has grown tired of pakistan’s support for terrorists, it’s backstabbing habits and extremist ways. The current US govt. is looking at options to punish pakistan with expanded drone strikes, exclusion from non-NATO ally status and stopping aid. Experts however have cautioned that in doing so, pakistan will be driven closer to china and Russia. Chinese opposition to India in every sphere finds Islamabad at comfort already, however, Russia may not be so warm to pakistan’s ambitions considering the close ties India and Russia enjoy.

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PM Narendra Modi and US President Donald Trump with First Lady Melania Trump (Reuters Photo)

Reports of Among the tools considered by the Trump administration, according to Reuters, are expanding drone strikes, withholding aid and revoking Pakistan’s status as a major non-Nato ally. The guardian reported -But attempts to bully Pakistan into submission will only drive Islamabad further toward China, said Ayesha Siddiqa, author and research associate at the School of Oriental and African Studies in London. “It also means that in Afghanistan, there will be more violence. Pakistan sees Afghanistan as an American-Indian project against Pakistani interests,” she said.”

Pakistan is widely believed to harbor and support Taliban militants, and has been regarded as a spoiler in peace talks. Analysis Donald Trump’s hands-off approach gives US military free rein President has delegated direction of overseas conflicts to his generals, raising fears of unchecked escalation Read more US policy on Afghanistan is evolving at a time when the defense department is particularly powerful in policy-making, after Trump delegated authority to his defense secretary, James Mattis, to set troop deployment levels there.

On Friday, the acting special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan (SRAP), Laurel Miller, left the post along with her deputy, leaving doubts over the future of the position, which was created in 2009 by Barack Obama. A state department statement said that Tillerson “has not made a decision” on the issue. Advertisement “It’s a distinction without a difference whether a decision has been made, since there is functionally nobody in the office,” said James Cunningham, a former US ambassador to Afghanistan. “The key part of this isn’t whether there is an SRAP office. It is how is the senior official who is responsible for these issues, and as far as I know, that basically doesn’t exist. This is all part of the whittling down, eviscerating, debilitating of the state department’s ability to participate effectively in diplomacy.” –Guardian quote ends. Read full text at their page linked above.

China has always been a haven for Pakistan when it comes to investment sourcing, partnering for defence, international support and a technology lifeline. For Russia, India is the first preference. Pakistan will not get much from Russia militarily, but may get some economic concessions in return for siding with them, drawing away from the Americans. Although it’s unlikely the US will completely abandon Pakistan, America will enjoy lesser and lesser influence on Islamabad, not that it currently has that much influence that it used to hold in the years before war on terror.

America feels India is an important ally especially for economic clout building and in form of military sales. “Thank you very much for … ordering equipment from the United States. Always makes us feel very good,” Trump said in a joint appearance with Modi in the White House cabinet room. “There’s nobody makes military equipment like we make military equipment.” Then there is the China angle, US wants India to counter China in Asia. Although India has not shown much interest in the Idea, it may be forced to do so, considering Chinese aggression on the LAC and Indian ocean region.

Written by Baldeva Singh

Baldeva Singh is a tough talking nationalist who has a flair for writing. Defence matters, technical details on weapons and war scenarios are his key expert areas. Baldev is known to walk the talk in his personal life. He is from Patiala (Punjab). His friends call him a "blunt weapon" but he is often found reading old books when free!

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