It may not have been the definite moment or act, but it does seem that a remark Prime Minister Narendra Modi made on the United States' Afghanistan policy has registered some impact with the powers that be at the White House.
While meeting US President Donald Trump last year in the Oval Office, Modi is reported to have quipped that 'Never has a country given so much away for so little in return'. Officials speaking to the Washington Post said that Trump viewed this statement as proof that "the rest of the world viewed the United States as being duped and taken advantage of in Afghanistan".
Pakistan has been at the receiving end of President Trump's ire since at-least last August when he said that Pakistan must do more to end terrorism in the Af-Pak region or face sanctions. On 1 January, he tweeted:
Trump followed up on this by endorsing a bill proposed by Senator Rand Paul that would end aid to Pakistan. Senator Paul has said that his bill would "take the money that would have gone to Pakistan and put it in an infrastructure fund to build roads and bridges here at home."
The Washington Post has also reported recently that US forces in Afghanistan under Trump have been given higher leeway to carry out drone strikes than during his predecessor Obama's tenure. The resulting increase was termed by the Washington Post as the 'new US air blitz' in Afghanistan.
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