The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

U.S. continues foreign aid to shaky Pakistan

Two years ago when Bin Laden was shot at point blank range by a U.S. Navy Seal in Abbottabad, Pakistan, which is home to one of the largest Pakistani military bases, the world thought the U.S. would stop its financial aid to the Pakistani military, among other branches. Instead, the Obama administration has increased the amount marginally after a minor hiccup.

According to several news reports late last year, thd U.S. has released over $1.6 billion dollars in military and economic aid to Pakistan. Is it worth giving a billion dollars to a country that our greatest enemy called home?

Well, ask the security experts who believe the Pakistani government was in a nexus with Bin Laden’s aids to provide him with a support system in Pakistan. Latest, a library has been named after Bin Laden, calling him a hero. Think about it, out of all the countries in the region, why did Bin Laden choose Pakistan? 

There are two statements that were released after Bin Laden’s encounter that need to be noted. In an interview to the CBS program “60 Minutes,” President Obama said, “We think that there had to be some sort of support network for Bin Laden inside of Pakistan. But we don’t know who or what that support network was.” 

In an interview with “Time” magazine, CIA Director Leon Panetta stated U.S. officials did not alert Pakistani counterparts to the raid because they feared the terrorist leader would be warned.

Our national debt continues to grow — why continue offering free gifts to nations? What is the line between being too liberal and serving our national interest?

A report published in The Guardian in 2011 said Pakistan has historically been among the top recipients of U.S. aid. Since 1948, the U.S. has sent more than $50B in direct aid to the country. Nearly half of this has been for military assistance.

President Obama came under severe criticism over why the U.S. continues its military aid to Pakistan. He responded by withholding a little of the aid for a time. 

An October 2013 report in USA Today titled, “U.S. Quietly Releasing $1.6B in Pakistan Assistance” said, “The Americans are uncomfortable highlighting the billions provided to a government that is plagued by corruption and perceived as often duplicitous in fighting terrorism.”

As an Indian, let me be honest, I have had first-hand experience of the hypocrisy of the Pakistani government. Just one example is that the Indian army on several occasions proved with documented evidence the ammunition some terrorists carried had seals of the Pakistani army.

Don’t you want to know where your money is going? 

What does the Republican Party think about foreign aid? A press release on the Republican Party’s website says, “Foreign aid should serve our national interest, an essential part of which is the peaceful development of less advanced and vulnerable societies in critical parts of the world. Assistance should be seen as an alternative means of keeping the peace, far less costly in both dollars and human lives than military engagement.”

I am a firm believer that the U.S. as the world hegemon should champion world peace and strive to protect human rights across the globe. 

Our Congress officially signs and approves financial aid to foreign countries, but it is the president who shapes foreign policy, and in this case Obama has been an ineffective decision maker. What about accountability to the American public? 

After doing all this, as an American, would you expect people from Pakistan will have an exceptional opinion about the U.S.? The answer is no.

According to a 2012 Pew Research poll, 74 percent of the Pakistanis polled believed the U.S. was an enemy.

Let me ask then: is it time now to reconsider federal funding to Pakistan?

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U.S. continues foreign aid to shaky Pakistan