Rand Paul has a Plan for Pakistan and Trump is Backing him

by Daveda Gruber:

U.S. Senator Rand Paul has tweeted an idea. He has proposed to fund infrastructure projects in the U.S. with foreign aid halted from going to Pakistan.

On Friday evening President Donald Trump issued support for U.S. Senator.

 

The Republican from Kentucky said he planned to introduce his proposal soon.

The U.S. announced plans to end up to $2 billion in security assistance to Pakistan on Thursday.

The reasoning is the U.S. State Department contended that Pakistan had failed to take “decisive action” against Taliban militants targeting U.S. personnel in neighboring Afghanistan.

A lot of money is at stake here. There is $255 million that was placed on hold in August, and about $900 million in Coalition Support Funds intended to reimburse Pakistan for counterterrorism operations.

This past week, President Trump insisted that the U.S. had “foolishly” given Pakistan more than $33 billion in aid over the last 15 years. He says we got nothing in return but “lies & deceit.”

U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, accused Pakistan of playing a double game for years. They have at times been working with the U.S. while at the same time they’ve been harboring terrorists who attack American troops in Afghanistan.

She said, “That game is not acceptable in this administration. We expect far more cooperation from Pakistan in the fight against terrorism.”

On the other hand, officials in Pakistan expressed disappointment with the U.S. plans. They said the suspension of aid would be detrimental to bilateral relations. Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry emphasized that the country had spent more than $120 billion of its own money on the war on terror in recent years.

They maintained that Pakistan’s cooperation with the U.S. had helped “decimate” Al Qaeda also driving other militant groups away from the Pakistan-Afghanistan border region.

Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry said, “Arbitrary deadlines, unilateral pronouncements and shifting goalposts are counterproductive in addressing common threats.”

A senior U.S. administration official stressed the money could potentially still be available if Pakistan were to change course.

Paul went a step further on Thursday. He argued that Pakistan has been of little use in the war on terrorism, and proposed cutting off aid to Pakistan altogether.

Paul said, “We’ve sent Pakistan $33 billion since 2002. What did we get for it? Well Pakistan didn’t even help us find Bin Laden, even though he was living in one of their cities for years. Then they jailed the informant who helped us to get Bin Laden. They’ve allowed suspected terrorists to operate in their country. Some say Pakistani intelligence agents actually aid and abet the terrorists. It’s wrong.”

Paul, called Trump’s recent proposal to suspend aid “a breakthrough.” He has been fighting to end aid to Pakistan for years,

I agree that our spending, giving billions to countries who do not directly help the U.S. should stop. Now, make it happen.

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