The United States plans to pour $750 million of aid into Pakistan’s tribal areas over the next five years as part of a “hearts and minds” campaign to win over this lawless region from Qaeda and Taliban militants.
This is, of course, only being done because it is in Israel’s interests to try and keep the fundamentalist Muslim world from gaining another foothold. America, as Israel’s primary sock-puppet, has taken it upon itself to suppress any nation or movement which is even remotely anti-Israel. The money comes straight out of the American taxpayers’ pocket.
But even before the plan has been fully carried out, documents and officials involved in the planning are warning of the dangers of distributing so much money in an area so hostile that oversight is impossible, even by Pakistan’s own government, which faces rising threats from Islamic militants.
Who will be given the aid has quickly become one of the most contentious questions between local officials and American planners concerned that millions might fall into the wrong hands. The local political agents and tribal chiefs in this hinterland on the Afghan border have for years accommodated the very groups the American and Pakistani governments seek to drive out.
The ambitious plan was publicly highlighted during a visit to Pakistan in June by Richard A. Boucher, the assistant secretary of state for South and Central Asian affairs, as a measure of Washington’s support for Pakistan’s president, Gen. Pervez Musharraf.
“The objective driving this decision is the hope that by bringing the FATA into the mainstream and assuring that basic human services and infrastructure are on par with the rest of Pakistan, the people of FATA would be less likely to welcome the presence of Al Qaeda and Taliban,” the draft states. The projects include health and education services, water and sanitation facilities, and agricultural development, it says, making clear that these are a means to a broader end. “The main goal of the United States government in relation to the FATA is counterterrorism,” it says.