Trump is driving Pakistan into China's arms

Trump is driving Pakistan into China's arms

A 2007 Pentagon memo that the New York Times quoted in a 2010 article says that Afghanistan could be the "Saudi Arabia of lithium", referencing the oil-rich monarchy that is a key USA regional ally.

"Driven by transnational terrorist networks, criminal organizations, cyber crime and state sponsorship of terror" the violence "promises to be a decade long threat to national security rather than a passing phenomenon", he said.

After meeting Ghani, Trump praised efforts to try to drive members of more than 20 militant groups, including the Taliban, out of Afghanistan.

Pakistan's Foreign Secretary Tehmina Janjua said that Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi reportedly expressed concern during a meeting with US Vice-President Mike Pence over Trump advocating a greater role for India in his new Afghan policy.

"With President Trump's recent announcement of his strategy to counter terrorism and bring stability to South Asia, Afghanistan's enduring partnership with the USA has been renewed and re-directed", Ghani said.

The US President, in the same speech, lauded India's role in Afghanistan and hoped for an increase of Indian support to rebuilding and securing the war ravaged nation.

During his speech announcing his revised approach to Afghanistan, Trump singled out Pakistan as a key player in the long-standing conflict.

Ghani, a former World Bank official, praised worldwide institutions like the United Nations for helping to foster stability in the wake of the second world war, but he said new efforts were needed to confront the "threats we are facing to our economies, our security and our values".

"The message to Pakistan to engage and become a responsible stakeholder in the region and in the fight against terrorism has never been clearer", he said.

"President Trumps' new strategy includes the disruption and denial of sanctuary to terrorists whose motives know no boundaries", he said. "The United States and our allies are working together throughout the Middle East to crush the loser terrorists and stop the reemergence of safe havens they use to launch attacks on all of our people". "We salute you", Ghani said of the renewed commitment to the war.

Ghani said Afghan forces are getting better, having gained more experience by assuming a bigger role in the fighting after the massive cuts in USA forces under Obama.

Trump added that "it is important to understand that the Afghan soldiers are doing the fighting". "We really have no choice but to do it".

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