Pakistan on Monday reacted angrily to Donald Trump’s latest comments against the country for not doing “a damn thing” for the United States in end terrorism, saying the US President “suffers conveniently from perpetual historic amnesia!”
Human Rights Minister Shireen Mazari’s terse remarks came a day after President Trump defended his administration’s decision to stop hundreds of millions of dollars in military aid to Pakistan for not doing enough to fight terrorism and criticised Islamabad for offering a hideout to Al Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden in the garrison city of Abbottabad.
The minister said in a series of tweets said that whether China or Iran, US policies of “containment and isolation” do not coincide with Pakistan’s strategic interests.
Ms Mazari, a close aide of Prime Minister Imran Khan, said Mr Trump’s latest criticism of Pakistan should be a “lesson” to those Pakistani leaders who “appeased” America, especially after the 9/11 terror attacks.
“Trump’s tirade against Pakistan and his claim that that Pakistan does not do ‘a damn thing’ for the US should be a lesson for those Pakistan leaders who kept appeasing the US especially after 9/11! The renditions; the loss of Pakistan lives in US war on terrorism; the free space for Raymond Davis and other operatives; etc etc,” she wrote on Twitter.
“The illegal killings by drone attacks; the list is endless but once again history shows appeasement does not work. Also, whether China or Iran, US policies of containment and isolation do not coincide with Pakistan strategic interests,” Ms Mazari said.
In reply to another tweet calling out Mr Trump over his remarks, Ms Mazari said: “@realDonaldTrump suffers conveniently from perpetual historic amnesia!”
Former Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif said Pakistan continues to “pay in blood” for what it did for the USA and described the bilateral ties as a “relationship of betrayals and sanctions.”
“We continue to pay in blood for what we did for USA from Beda Ber to fighting wars wich weren’t ours. Reinvented our religion to suit US interests, destroyed our tolerant ethos, replaced it with bigotry & intolerance. A relationship of betrayals & sanctions,” Mr Asif tweeted.
Referring to Osama bin Laden and his hideout in Abbottabad, Mr Trump in an interview to Fox News on Sunday said, “You know, living – think of this – living in Pakistan, beautifully in Pakistan in what I guess they considered a nice mansion, I don’t know, I’ve seen nicer.”
The compound was demolished shortly after US Naval Special Warfare Development Group forces, in a daring helicopter raid, killed Osama bin Laden in 2011.
“But living in Pakistan right next to the military academy, everybody in Pakistan knew he was there,” he added.
“And we give Pakistan USD 1.3 billion a year. … (Laden] lived in Pakistan, we’re supporting Pakistan, we’re giving them USD 1.3 billion a year — which we don’t give them anymore, by the way, I ended it because they don’t do anything for us, they don’t do a damn thing for us,” he said.
The ties between the two countries strained after Trump, while announcing his Afghanistan and South Asia policy in August last year, hit out at Pakistan for providing safe havens to “agents of chaos” that kill Americans in Afghanistan and warned Islamabad that it has “much to lose” by harbouring terrorists.
In September, the Trump administration cancelled 300 million dollars in military aid to Islamabad for not doing enough against terror groups like the Haqqani Network and Taliban active on its soil.