WSJ Blasts 'Utterly False Narrative' on Soviet-Afghan War

April FrancisJan 06, 2019

In his latest press briefing, US President Donald Trump belittled India's assistance to help build a library in Afghanistan. On the contrary, India's response to Trump's taunt has been measured.

Moreover, others in the U.S. establishment, including Trump's own Cabinet members have repeatedly praised India for its development efforts in the country, which go far beyond building "a library". "Library! That's, like, five hours of what we spend (in Afghanistan)", said the president. It needs to be realised by President Trump that India has always preferred to remain modest about its role.

Later when a question was put to the Foreign Office spokesman Dr Muhammad Faisal, he responded, "We support Trump's remarks, and are now assessing developments in the bilateral relationship".

Mr Trump said: "I get along very well with India and PM Modi".

Inaugurating the Afghan parliament building in 2015 after reconstruction financed by India, Modi promised to promote programmes "empowering Afghan youth with modern education and professional skills".

According to the Embassy of India in Afghanistan, the current development partnership between India and Afghanistan renders India the country's largest donor in the region and one of its largest donors in the world. And look at the results today.

The statement comes amid reports on a possible withdrawal of American troops from Afghanistan. Iran, along with India and Russian Federation, had supported the Northern Alliance which fought against the Taliban.

The U.S. military also has some 7,000 troops deployed in a separate U.S. counterterrorism mission.

Asked if India's role in Afghanistan was going to be security related, Trump said: "We are going to be doing something that is right".

Trump Signing MAGA Hats in Iraq May Have Violated Defense Department Rule
But officials say that as plans have been developed over the last week, the pace of withdrawal could be much slower. Binaa favors close ties with Iran and is aligned with Tehran on regional political issues.

USA forces make up the bulk of the NATO-led Resolute Support mission that is training and advising Afghan security forces in their fight against the Taliban and Islamic State (IS) militants.

Mohib said he wanted to also keep India in the loop about recent developments over the peace process.

Sources said India may be building small libraries as part of the community development initiative, but most of its investments in Afghanistan were on mega infrastructure projects including the 218 km road from Zaranj to Delaram, the Salma Dam and the new Afghan Parliament building.

India also provides humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan.

US President Donald Trump Wednesday said he wanted a great relationship with Pakistan for which he would be meeting with its new leadership soon. The paper, owned by longtime Trump ally Rupert Murdoch, called the comments "cracked history". It is precisely this rich heritage of knowledge and experience, which India has, that a succession of American administrations have denied themselves.

India has tried to be in the room when the Afghan peace process is discussed in multilateral fora. India's approach has focused on capacity-building along with building infrastructure.

Afghanistan's NSA invited his Indian counterpart to visit Kabul to expand cooperation and Doval accepted the invitation.

The piece goes on to slam Trump's "utterly false narrative" about the war by lining out its history and elaborating on how the Soviets tried to justify their invasion. In fact, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan is visiting Turkey wherein Afghanistan would figure as an important agenda of discussion.

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