The former foreign minister of Pakistan Hina Rabbani Khar believes that the US military has been deployed to spark chaos across the region in South Asia.
In an interview with the CNN, Khar said “Not a conspiracy theorist, but the more I see how the war in Afghanistan is being fought, the more I believe it.”
She was pointing towards George Friedman’s book “The Next 100 Years”, where he has reportedly stated that the US is present there “to create chaos in the region, so that Russia, China and other Central Asian countries can be contained.”
In other parts of the interview Khar said “We can’t afford to be flippant about the realities on the ground in Afghanistan. Warlordism is all over the place in Afghanistan, where Taliban have taken over.”
This comes as pressures are on the rise by Washington on Islamabad to do more and act against militants which they claim are having safe havens inside the Pakistani territory across Afghan border.
Islamabad has responded by accusing the United States of making Pakistan a scapegoat for its own failure to bring peace to Afghanistan after more than 16 years of troop deployments, stating it seeks recognition by the US of its efforts towards counterterrorism and not aid.
Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry sought to minimize the impact of the aid cut, saying Pakistan had spent more than $120 billion during the past 15 years on counterterrorism, largely from its own resources.
And, in a possible sign of efforts to improve relations, Alice Wells, principal deputy assistant secretary of the state for South and Central Asia, met Pakistan’s Foreign Secretary Tehmina Janjua in Islamabad on Monday for civil-to-civil diplomatic efforts.
Wells said the US seeks to move toward a new relationship with Pakistan.
In her meetings with different Pakistani officials in Islamabad, she said that the new relationship should be based on mutual interest in realizing a stable and prosperous region, according to a press statement issued by the US Embassy in Pakistan.
Acknowledging Pakistan’s considerable sacrifices in fighting terrorism, Wells emphasized that the US South Asia strategy represents an opportunity to work together for the establishment of a stable, peaceful Afghanistan, the defeat of Daesh in South Asia, and the elimination of terrorist groups that threaten both Pakistan and the United States.
Earlier on Monday, top US military officer Marine General Joseph Dunford said he was committed to the US-Pakistan relationship, which has been strained in recent weeks, specially after Trump’s New Year tweet accusing Pakistan of “deceit & lies”, and with the suspension of US aid including multimilliion dollar counterterrorism costs reimbursements.
“Do we agree on everything right now? No we don‘t. But are we committed to a more effective relationship with Pakistan? We are. And I‘m not giving up on that,” Dunford, chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, told a small group of reporters during a trip to Brussels.
Dunford’s statement comes after Centcom Commander Gen Joseph Votel’s telephonic talk with Pak Army Chief Gen Qamar Bajwa last week in which he assured Pakistani leadership that no unilateral action on the country’s territory is being planned by the US and its Nato ally in Afghanistan despite suspension of the military aid and a flurry of hostile statements starting with Trump’s caustic tweet.