Trump's threats to Pakistan probably won't change much

Trump's threats to Pakistan probably won't change much

An article in the Hong Kong-based South China Morning Post (SCMP) had earlier noted that in South Asia "there is one clear victor from Donald Trump's tweet tantrums this week: China, which suddenly finds its leverage over Pakistan multiplying as a result of the U.S. President's mood swings". Their website reported his tweet and added: "The US has long accused Istanbul of allowing militants to operate relatively freely in Pakistan's border regions to carry out operations in neighbouring Afghanistan".

Only Fox News could confuse Islamabad and Istanbul.

The minister's statement came one day after the United States (US) announced the suspension of all military aid to Pakistan. In 2009, then-president Barack Obama pointed to the terrorist "safe havens" in Pakistan as part of the need to ramp up American troop levels in Afghanistan.

That's why, despite their strident tone, it's unclear whether Trump's tweets signal a real shift in USA policy.

The official also said the suspension is mostly about the security assistance and does not include civilian assistance. "I don't think they will fully cut off the assistance, because they still want to work with Pakistan".

Washington's announcement Thursday signaled growing frustration over Pakistan's level of cooperation as USA involvement in the war in Afghanistan enters its 17th year.

Similarly, the Afghan ambassador to the United States, Hamdullah Mohib, and former Afghan President Hamid Karzai both welcomed the tweet.

The administration portrayed Thursday's announcement as following through on the August speech.

A day after the U.S. government suspended almost $2 billion security-related assistance to Pakistan, President Donald Trump expressed public support for a Republican senator's plan to introduce legislation, cancelling all aid to the country over its continued refusal to take tangible action against terrorists.

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Meanwhile, in the Middle East, Trump also threatened to cut off aid to the Palestinians, following his December decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. "At this stage all Fiscal Year 17 CSF have been suspended, so that's the entire amount of United States dollars 900 million", Andrews said. "They don't even want to negotiate a long overdue peace treaty with Israel", he tweeted Tuesday.

"Our hope is that they will see this as a further indication of this administration's huge frustration with the trajectory of our relationship and that they need to be serious about taking the steps we have asked in order to put it on more solid footing", a senior State Department official told reporters. The council will now hold multiparty conferences in Faisalabad on January 12 and in Lahore on January 13 against the USA threats to Pakistan.

Trump's tweets about North Korea have led to raised eyebrows around the world, and he outdid himself this week when he wrote on Twitter that his nuclear button was larger than North Korean leader Kim Jong Un's.

After South Korea and North Korea announced they would hold high-level talks, Trump took credit for the progress.

They say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result.

"Obviously, we'll continue talking with one another as we are at all times", Mattis said.

USA ambassador to India Kenneth Juster met with the Indian foreign secretary S. Jaishankar for the first time after Washington indicated that it has made a decision to withhold at least $900 million in military aid to Pakistan.

The source added that "all options are on the table" when it comes to further moves, including stripping Pakistan of its status as a "major non-NATO ally" or calling in vital International Monetary Fund loans. There should not be any doubts when it comes to the defence of Pakistan, he had said. Mattis along with the secretary of state Rex Tillerson have travelled to Pakistan in recent months to deliver tough message to the country's leadership.

But Carafano at Heritage said the actions were "not knee-jerk". According to the spokeswoman, such a measure was a response to the local authorities' insufficient measures in the fight against terrorist groups. The State Department needs to take a decision on $255 million for FY 2017 only by September of his year.

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