Rohrabacher: Cease U.S. Aid to Pakistan
WASHINGTON – Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, in a speech Friday to the House of Representatives, called on the Obama administration to stop sending foreign assistance money to Pakistan, whose ruling military elite, he said, has been acting in an unfriendly manner toward U.S. interests. On Thursday Secretary of State John Kerry asked Congress for $881.8 million in aid for the South Asian nation.
“We should cut off our aid to Pakistan because it is not an ally,” Rohrabacher said on the House floor, “and any money we send them only strengthens their ability to act against us and against our friends in Afghanistan as we withdraw.
“We cannot,” he continued, “buy the friendship of people who feel that their core interests are violently against our own. At a time of tight budgets, we should reserve our aid for our friends and allies.”
The congressman renewed attention to the plight of Shakeel Afridi, the Pakistani doctor tortured and sentenced to 33 years in jail for directing the U.S. Navy Seal team to the hideout of Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden. Dr. Afridi was arrested May 22, 2011, three weeks after the Seal team killed the world’s top terrorist, and then tortured and kept blindfolded for eight months. “Dr. Afridi risked his life to bring justice,” said Rohrabacher, “and we leave him in a Pakistani dungeon to rot.”
The California Republican, who chairs the Subcommittee on Europe, Eurasia, and Emerging Threats, went on to accuse Pakistan of “supporting America’s enemies who are attacking American soldiers in Afghanistan and have targeted and have brutally murdered American civilians.
“Secretary Kerry says that we must give this support to placate positive elements in Pakistan. Well, Pakistan’s fight against militancy is bogus. It’s just to extract money from America, when the Pakistani government has $23 billion in U.S. aid since 9/11.”