Pakistan Slams Being 'Scapegoated for US Failures' in Afghanistan

US President Donald Trump announces his strategy for the war in Afghanistan during an address from Fort Myer Virginia

Hailing Donald Trumps new tough line against Pakistan, top USA lawmakers have demanded that Islamabad be designated a "state sponsor of terrorism" and its major non-NATO ally status be revoked to force it stop from supporting terrorist groups.

China and Pakistan consider each other "all-weather friends" and have close diplomatic, economic and security ties. "They have always pressured us for doing more and more".

He acknowledged that the United States alone was not going to change this dynamic with Pakistan. "Collaboration and synergy of effort between all stakeholders is the key to success to bring this long drawn war in Afghanistan to its logical conclusion", he added.

In the wake of Trump's comments, China, another ally of Pakistan's, came to the country's defense.

Senator Ben Cardin, a ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said pressure must be increased on Pakistan to end its support for extremist groups. Because of its support to America, Pakistan has suffered a major loss. Realistically speaking, the United States needs Pakistan now that it has chose to increase its troops in Afghanistan. "How it is possible for Pakistan to provide its support in a matter which will strengthen India's grip in Afghanistan?" I don't agree with the position "if we only leave them alone they would leave us alone".

He said the president had benefited from an outsider's perspective on the US-Pakistan relationship, eschewing the conventional wisdom that "however much the Pakistanis double- deal you and lie to you and don t cooperate, you have no choice but to just keep the status quo".

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"The war will remain on in Kashmir", he said.

However, U.S. officials and analysts have long accused Pakistan of playing a double-game with Islamic extremists - supporting those that threaten its rivals in India and Afghanistan while cracking down on those who target its own citizens.

"It works when the president speaks up and says this is what we're going to do, we're going to stomp out terrorism and he follows through with it". One infamous example includes a $6 million program created to breed Italian and Afghan goats for better cashmere to improve the yield. "To scapegoat Pakistan will not help in stabilizing Afghanistan". (China has increased investment tenfold to compensate; it pumped in nearly $1.2 billion a year ago.) Plus, of course, the Pakistani military will always control the best land route to Kabul.

Pakistani civilians have little power over regional strategy but have lost homes and loved ones to militant violence which has killed thousands in their own country since 2007.

Responding to a question, the Secretary of State sought the help of India in changing Pakistan's behaviour.

U.S. Ambassador to Pakistan David Hale met Tuesday with Foreign Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif, according to a government statement, which also announced a meeting with Tillerson "in the next few days" in Washington.

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