Trump fires off a new tirade at Pakistan

Published: November 18, 2018
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US president claims Islamabad helped shelter former al Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden. PHOTO: AFP/FILE

US president claims Islamabad helped shelter former al Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden. PHOTO: AFP/FILE

President Donald Trump on Sunday defended his administration’s decision to stop hundreds of millions of dollars in military aid to Pakistan, saying the country does not do “a damn thing” for the US.

He also claimed that Islamabad had helped Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden hide near the garrison city.

Trump also defended his administration’s decision to pull hundreds of millions of dollars in military aid to Islamabad in an interview with Fox News.

Host Chris Wallace asked Trump: “Wouldn’t it have been nice if we got Osama bin Laden a lot sooner than that, wouldn’t it have been nice?”

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“You know, living — think of this — living in Pakistan, beautifully in Pakistan in what I guess they considered a nice mansion, I don’t know, I’ve seen nicer. But living in Pakistan right next to the military academy, everybody in Pakistan knew he was there,” Trump said, referring to bin Laden and his former compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan.

“You’re not even going to give them credit for taking down bin Laden?” Wallace asked.

“They took him down but — look, look, there’s news right there, he lived in Pakistan, we’re supporting Pakistan, we’re giving them $1.3 billion a year, which we don’t give them anymore, by the way, I ended it because they don’t do anything for us, they don’t do a damn thing for us,” Trump responded.

The compound was destroyed shortly after the United States Naval Special Warfare Development Group forces, in a helicopter raid, killed bin Laden in 2011.

The United States has already canceled $300 million in aid to Pakistan for its lack of decisive action against militant groups.

The cancelation of aid is part of President Trump’s New Year tweet in which he launched a scathing criticism against Pakistan for betraying the US.

“The United States has foolishly given Pakistan more than 33 billion dollars in aid over the last 15 years, and they have given us nothing but lies & deceit, thinking of our leaders as fools. They give safe haven to the terrorists we hunt in Afghanistan, with little help. No more!,” Trump tweeted on January 1.

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The US president Donald Trump also said he had been fully briefed on an audio recording of journalist Jamal Khashoggi’s murder but “does not want to listen to it himself”.

“Because it’s a suffering tape. It’s a terrible tape,” he said in the interview.

“It was very violent, very vicious and terrible.”

The CIA has reportedly concluded that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman ordered Khashoggi’s assassination in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul October 2.

He said that he was thinking of replacing up to five senior advisers but insists that his administration is “running like a well-oiled machine,” according to an interview aired Sunday.

“I have three or four or five positions that I’m thinking about,” he told “Fox News Sunday” interviewer Chris Wallace.

“Maybe it’s going to end up being two. But I need flexibility.”

Denying recurrent reports of a White House in turmoil — with pressure growing from the investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election — he said that some staff turnover was normal.

He declined, however, to repeat an earlier assurance that John Kelly would remain his chief of staff through 2020.

“There are certain things I love what he does and certain things I don’t like that he does. At that aren’t his strength,” he said, referring to Kelly.

While crediting Kelly with “doing an excellent job in many ways,” Trump said that “at some point he’s going to want to move on. John will move on.”

He also said that “there’s a chance” that Kirstjen Nielsen might be replaced as homeland security secretary.

“I like her very much, I respect her very much,” he said, before adding, “I would like her to be much tougher on the border (with Mexico). Much tougher.”

Trump also defended the decision Wednesday by the office of his wife Melania to issue a highly unusual statement suggesting that deputy national security adviser Mira Ricardel be replaced. Ricardel left that post the following day for assignment to an unspecified new position.

The First Lady was reportedly peeved with Ricardel’s involvement in her recent Africa trip.

“I thought it was fine,” the president said of his wife’s intervention, adding of Ricardel, “She was with me for a long time, although I don’t know her.”

The Fox interview was recorded on Friday.

 

With additional input from AFP

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Reader Comments (24)

  • Sajid
    Nov 18, 2018 - 9:51PM

    This is what you get in the end when standing at the wrong side at the wrong time with the wrong people – decisions made by the wrong people(Musharaf).Recommend

  • Karim
    Nov 18, 2018 - 9:54PM

    Um ET you’re 11 months too late maybe? Quoting from what was said in January 2018Recommend

  • Maverick
    Nov 18, 2018 - 10:08PM

    A serious eye opener for Pakistani leadership. Getting a stigma after all those years of sacrifices and wreckage all over the country and this is what we are getting in response from a stupid man… Time slipping quite rapidly for Pakistan to take firm stand and voice its concerns our regional issues which hamper achieving our politico-military aims and objectives. As nobody is a friend or permanent foe in international politics, so better Pakistan steer its foreign policy at right angle and free from external influences. Do what is best for this nation keeping in mind the sovereignty and self respect of the country. Recommend

  • Hamid Hameed
    Nov 18, 2018 - 10:46PM

    What else does he expect of a mob of deceitful beggars?Recommend

  • Pakistani
    Nov 18, 2018 - 10:49PM

    Trump should better focus on the internal affairs of the United States than Pakistan.Recommend

  • powayman
    Nov 18, 2018 - 10:51PM

    After OBL/Abbottabad I don’t think many Pakistanis have an true understanding of the resentment that the average American harbors against Pakistan. This resentment only increased when Pakistan did almost nothing to hunt down those who were responsible and never issued it’s infamous Abbottabad report. Pakistan is lucky that Obama was in office when OBL was discovered – there are several Presidents (including Trump) who might have responded differently. Recommend

  • Zaffi
    Nov 18, 2018 - 11:11PM

    Trump has a bug mouth with little brainRecommend

  • Mannie
    Nov 18, 2018 - 11:23PM

    Why now? Is because of a spat between China & US and Mike Pence criticizing the belt project. Well President Donald what do you expect if you stop the cash Pakistan will go else where. As a business man you must understand that good business means profit and China is where the profit is for now unless you change your policies just words will not matter.Recommend

  • Abdul Karim
    Nov 18, 2018 - 11:50PM

    Mr, Trump was never a friend of Pakistan so his nasty anti-Pakistan tweets have no impact in Pakistan. If Pakistan should close the US/NATO supply route through and only then Mr. Trump will know Pakistan is doing nothing as supplies of his troops dry up in Afghanistan. So far Pakistan is doing a lot by keeping this supply line open something Mr, Trump has overlooked in his tweets.Recommend

  • Amir
    Nov 19, 2018 - 12:23AM

    trying to sell hate to improve his falling ratings. Pakistan is a easy punching bag he thinks but things are changing in Pakistan and soon he will realize that he needs more help from Pakistan than Pakistan need from his country.Recommend

  • Khan
    Nov 19, 2018 - 12:43AM

    It’s called blessings in disguise. If this happens to be an excuse for blocking the aid, let it be because unless or until Pakistan get rid of such aid (more than half of which goes vack.to US in some sort of fees) it won’t be able to succeed. Recommend

  • straight talk
    Nov 19, 2018 - 3:21AM

    I guess he’s still waiting for the Abbottabad report?Recommend

  • numbersnumbers
    Nov 19, 2018 - 6:06AM

    Trump read extensive files on Good Taliban activities!Recommend

  • Mr Pakistani
    Nov 19, 2018 - 6:52AM

    We should charge the US for letting its planes use our air space to resupply its soldiers.Recommend

  • rafeeq
    Nov 19, 2018 - 7:40AM

    let them not give us any aid, we don’t need it, we will ask for it from china, saudi or uae or tom imf…. but we do need aidRecommend

  • Pakistani
    Nov 19, 2018 - 7:52AM

    A request to Pakistani Govt: please release Dr. Shakeel Afridi. What are you getting by keeping him in jail?Recommend

  • Nadeem Afridi
    Nov 19, 2018 - 8:59AM

    This idiot just found out what 1/2 of the American’s think about him. He doesn’t want to know what most Pakistani’s think about it him.

    2 more years and you are back to your miserable TV shows.Recommend

  • syed baqar ahsan
    Nov 19, 2018 - 10:23AM

    Do not humiliate Pakistan,salient majority of Afghanistan knows the truth of USA/Indian acts in Afghan affairs.At least Russia,Pakistan and Iran has bitterness. Recommend

  • Malik
    Nov 19, 2018 - 10:41AM

    “who let the dogs out”Recommend

  • bashir gul
    Nov 19, 2018 - 11:40AM

    @Sajid:
    Well said.Recommend

  • masood hussain
    Nov 19, 2018 - 12:40PM

    @Zaffi: According to Stormy Daniels, brain is the not the only “little thing” that trump has.Recommend

  • Asif Iqbal
    Nov 19, 2018 - 1:07PM

    Mr Trump,

    We don’t need your money anymore! Alhamdulillah, we are getting packages from our brothers left and right. We are a proud nation.Recommend

  • Komal S
    Nov 19, 2018 - 4:04PM

    @Abdul Karim:
    Really, please try to stop the NATO line.Recommend

  • Komal S
    Nov 19, 2018 - 4:06PM

    @Khan:
    I fully concur. Only problem though, you are trying to replace US with China/Saudi/UAE etc… So currently you have no other option.Recommend

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