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'Old friends' reuniting?
Posted By F. Michael Maloof On 07/29/2012 @ 5:44 pm In Front Page,Politics,U.S.,World | No Comments
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BEIRUT, Lebanon – What is described as an old Cold War alliance among the United States, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia, a long-time friend to both countries, seems to be re-emerging as the U.S. seeks to re-establish military ties with Pakistan, according to a report in Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin.
The U.S. regards Pakistan as pivotal to its new Asia policy to, in effect, contain China.
The U.S. also is bringing Saudi Arabia into this hasty arrangement because of their close ties.
At the same time, however, India is keeping a wary eye on Washington’s initiatives, especially after much fanfare by the Obama administration a few months ago with New Delhi for a renewed alliance.
“All this is great ‘public diplomacy,’” said former Indian Ambassador M. K. Bhadrakumar “But are Indians such duffers as not to begin to seriously wonder what is the meaning of the deep rumblings at their side facing the West where the U.S.-Pakistan security and military tie-up is getting restored?”
The U.S.-India relationship, too, is seen as a means of containing China as Washington encourages New Delhi to spread its influence more into the East China Sea which China has declared as being in its own historical domain.
That position, however, is not only being challenged by the U.S., but by other countries in the area who view the South China Sea with its islands and seabed as having abundant reserves of oil and other minerals. India, too, has been working with such countries as Vietnam in the region for oil drilling, which has created yet another level of friction between Beijing and New Delhi.
Not only is the new Pakistani spy director, Lt. General Zaheerul Islam coming to visit with his U.S. counterpart, Central Intelligence Director David Petraeus, but the Obama administration has decided to release some $1.1 billion which it held up for the Pakistani military. Pakistani army chief Gen. Parvez Kayani, who has been particularly critical of the U.S., also is expected to visit.
At the same time, the Saudis have offered Pakistan lucrative energy deals if it only will lessen its already close ties with Tehran. Both Iran and Saudi Arabia are in a virtual sectarian war, with Saudi Arabia being the seat of Sunni Islam, while Tehran is the base for Shi’a Islam.
The Middle East situation with the Syrian government of President Bashar al-Assad in its alliance with Iran about to fall apart has emboldened Saudi Arabia to make its move against Iran to lessen its influence among the other Gulf Arab states – a position to which Washington is not opposed.
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