Pakistan currently receives around $22 billion a year in aid from the United States. They are supposed to be our ally, but like so many other countries receiving US aid, Pakistan hates everything about the US except the money we give them. Their government openly condemns the US on a number of issues. While telling us that they will help us in our war on terrorism, they knowingly hide and shelter the very terrorists we’re after. When the US does locate and take action against said terrorists, such as Osama bin Laden, the Pakistani government gets all in a snit.
There have been numerous occasions when Pakistani forces have ‘accidently’ fired upon US forces, inflicting injuries and casualties. The Pakistan government always issued an apology and expected everything to be fine and dandy.
But when the shoe is on the other foot, a simple apology apparently is insufficient to appease our loyal allies. Last month, a US helicopter fired on a Pakistan checkpoint, killing 24 Pakistani soldiers. The mistake was made based upon flawed information of which the US has repeatedly issue one apology after another to the Pakistan government.
Unwilling to follow their own example of apologizing for friendly fire accidents, the Pakistani government has decided to start taxing the US for all military supplies being shipped through their country to our forces in Afghanistan. Since Afghanistan is a landlocked nation without any coastal ports or river access, all supplies being sent to US forces still fighting in Afghanistan must be either airlifted or trucked into the country.
In retaliation for the friendly fire mistake, Pakistan has announced that they are going to start charging a tax of around $1,500 per shipping container passing through their country. They also plan on taxing fuel tankers that truck needed gasoline and diesel to the US troops in Afghanistan. Approximately 1,300 shipping containers are transported through Pakistan each month, which will now cost the US nearly $2 million a month. Add the tax for the 1,000 fuel tankers a month that also pass across the Pakistan border, our good ole buddies, the Pakistani’s are looking at netting over $3 million a month.
I checked the definition of the word ‘extortion’ and found the following two definitions,
“1. Illegal use of one’s official position or powers to obtain property, funds, or patronage.
2. An excessive or exorbitant charge.”
According to the dictionary definition, the Pakistan government is guilty of extortion in their plan to tax the US for all of the military supplies being shipped through their country. And since extortion is a criminal offense, our government should take swift and immediate action against them by cutting all US aid off from Pakistan. I would also instruct the military to use any and all alternate routes for the shipping of military supplies that do not pass across the Pakistan border. Finally, I would do what should have been done years ago and list Pakistan as a hostile nation and one to be avoided by all US citizens traveling abroad.
Perhaps the loss of the billions of dollars of aid along with all tourist dollars and US support of any kind might make other nations think twice before trying to resort to any type of extortion against us.
However, the Obama administration continues to ignore law and ethics and as such will most likely continue to support Pakistan by paying their extortion fees. This is another reason we need to clean up Washington and get rid of Obama and his cronies.