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Avoid being carried away by US promises


Every other day the hubris-ridden US President Donald Trump issues an aggressive tweet threatening Iran of terrible consequences if it dares to carry out any action to avenge Gen Qassem Suleimani’s assassination. In the latest tweet, President Trump has claimed that the USA has the strongest military in the world with the latest lethal weapons in its armoury. Iran has been told to choose between acquiescence and destruction.

While Iran has yet to undertake any act of revenge, anti-US sentiment is touching new heights in the Gulf region and beyond. After huge protests in Iraq against the US policies, the Iraqi parliament called for expulsion of foreign troops from the country. President Trump threatened Iraq with sanctions and a bill for billions of dollars if the USA is forced to withdraw its troops. The gangster-like bluster would only enhance the already strong anti-US sentiment in Iraq. Pakistan needs to learn from the way the US is threatening and blackmailing an erstwhile ally.

The advisories sent by the US embassies in the Gulf to their citizens indicate that they are unsafe after General Soleimani’s assassination. Meanwhile the US Embassy in Islamabad has also issued a countrywide security alert to its citizens. Pakistan government has to draw the right conclusion from the numerous anti-US processions in different cities of Pakistan, including Karachi and Islamabad. Strong anti US protests in Indian-Occupied Kashmir and Kargil also indicate that US citizens are no more welcome there.

Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi says that while talking to his counterparts from Iran, Saudi Arabia, UAE and Turkey, he reaffirmed Pakistan’s resolve not to become a part of any conflict in the region and renewed the offer of mediation in the Middle East crisis.

The DG ISPR has asked the nation not to pay heed to rumours on social as well as mainstream media regarding the country’s role in the Middle East situation. The ISPR chief termed the suggestions in social media about Pakistan’s possible support for the USA in the present Middle East situation part of the “propaganda” campaign by anti-state elements. Pakistani officials have to avoid being euphoric after talks with US government leaders to avoid providing a handle to these elements to malign the country.

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