WASHINGTON: The “Washington Post” yesterday [Feb 10] confirmed a report filed by this correspondent earlier this week that the Administration does not want to penalise India for her massive military build-up since it is directed against China as far as the United States is concerned.
Under a Congressional rider introduced into the Foreign Aid Bill last year the President is urged to cut off American aid to any country which incurs military expenditure that “materially interferes with its development”. India, which is spending huge sums of money in purchasing highly sophisticated Soviet military equipment, could come under the arms rider of the Aid Bill.
But according to the ‘Post’, “Washington officials who consider China as America’s number one enemy certainly don’t want to discourage India by cutting off economic aid because India is doing her share against China.”
One US official was further quoted as saying “now we are faced with a problem of hitting the people we don’t want to hit and not hitting the military prodigals who should be hit”. By “military prodigals” the official was referring to some Latin American countries like Peru and Brazil which are buying French supersonics and therefore face US aid cuts.
Published in Dawn, February 12th, 2018