Washington: United States Lawmakers have asked Pakistan why it takes aid from the country when it calls China as its best friend. Pakistan display of friendship with China during Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani's ongoing tour to the country has left some Lawmakers agitated. (Agencies)
Gilani landed in China on Tuesday for a four-day visit amid strained ties with the US, and hailed Beijing as Islamabad's "best" and "most trusted friend". China in turn "unswervingly" backed Pakistan's anti-terror efforts.
"We are borrowing 40 cents out of every dollar that we spend. It's a hard sell to the American people that we should borrow 40 cents, a lot of it from China, and spend it
in Pakistan, and then have the head of Pakistan go to China and stand up and say, 'You're our best friend'. I mean, it just doesn't make sense," Senator Jim Risch said in his remarks at a Congressional hearing on Pakistan convened by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
Risch, who represents Idaho in the US Senate, said he believed Americans were increasingly tired of "shoveling money" to people "who just flat don't like us".
He said he has had difficulty in explaining the US policy of spending billions on civilian issues in Pakistan to his constituents specially when every poll coming out of that country clearly displays the Pakistanis' dislike for America.
Referring to the flood relief efforts in Pakistan, he said US was the first state to rush aid and military to save lives and spent hundreds of millions rebuilding the bridges that were washed out.
But, he said, his constituents asked "why are we spending our kids' and our grandkids' money to do this in a country that really doesn't like us? And no matter what we do, we don't seem to move the needle at all as far as them liking us".
Senator Jim Webb said it was not feasible to discuss the strategic implications of Pakistan and the region without addressing China's influence.
"We can't examine clearly what our options are and I don't think we can examine what the region is going to potentially look like without talking about China," he said.
He observed that Pakistan and China shared concerns over India, which was one of the motivators of their partnership.
Washington: United States Lawmakers have asked Pakistan why it takes aid from the country when it calls China as its best friend. Pakistan display of friendship with China during Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani's ongoing tour to the country has left some Lawmakers agitated.