Feigned friendship and ill-disguised mistrust (July 16th 2012) Feigned friendship and ill-disguised mistrust (July 16th 2012)

Andrew J. Bacevich the 65 year old American Professor of International Relations and retired career officer in the US Army has published an article in the LA Times titled ‘Divorcing Pakistan’ which contends the interests of Washington and Islamabad do not align, and neither do their preferred forms of paranoia. Bacevich states “The history of U.S.-Pakistani relations is one of wild swings between feigned friendship and ill-disguised mistrust. When the United States needs Pakistan, Washington showers Islamabad with money, weapons and expressions of high esteem. Once the need wanes, the gratuities cease, often with brutal abruptness. Instead of largesse, Pakistan gets lectures, with the instruction seldom well received. …But seldom has a marriage of convenience produced greater inconvenience and consternation for the parties involved. Simply put, U.S. and Pakistani interests do not align. Worse, neither do our preferred forms of paranoia. Pakistanis don’t worry about Islamists taking over the world. Americans are untroubled by the prospect of India emerging as a power of the first rank. The United States stayed in this unhappy marriage for the last decade in large part because Pakistan provided the transit route for supplies sustaining NATO’s ongoing war in landlocked Afghanistan. … A recently negotiated agreement with several former-Soviet Central Asian republics creates alternatives, removing Pakistan’s grip on NATO’s logistical windpipe. …As with most divorces, the proceedings promise to be ugly. Already, the U.S. is escalating its campaign of missile attacks against “militants” on Pakistani soil. U.S. officials dismiss complaints that this infringes on Pakistan’s national sovereignty.”


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