US doesn't want to arm Pak against India: Obama to Zardari | india | Hindustan Times
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US doesn't want to arm Pak against India: Obama to Zardari

india Updated: Sep 27, 2010 14:53 IST
PTI
US

The US does not want to arm Pakistan against India, President Barack Obama had categorically told his Pakistani counterpart Asif Ali Zardari during a meeting at the Oval Office months after assuming the top American office.

"We do not begrudge you being concerned about India," Obama had told Zardari at the meeting on May 7, 2009, which was also attended by the Pakistan President's son Bilawal, according to a new book.

This was a chance for the two Presidents to forge a personal connection, writes award-winning investigative
American journalist Bob Woodward in his latest book Obama's War that hit the stands on Monday.

"... we do not want to be part of arming you (Pakistan) against India, so let me be very clear about that," Obama, who
assumed office in January 2009, had said.

To his remarks, Zardari responded saying: "We are trying to change our world view but it's not going to happen
overnight."

Running into 417-pages, the book gives a detailed account of how the United States has not been able to make things move in a positive direction and get desired cooperation from Pakistan in the war on terror, despite having significantly
increased the aid to Islamabad.

One of the main reasons, several top US officials say, is Pakistan's apprehension and hatred against India, according to
the book.

"Pakistan thinks about the US role in Afghanistan in the context of its relationship with India," the then Director
of National Intelligence Dennis Blair told Obama at one of his situation room meetings.

It was the cliche that Pakistan's obsession with its "mortal enemy", India, cause the nation to harbour terrorists,
the book says.

"There's a fundamental incoherence in the strategy" for dealing with Pakistan, US Vice President Joe Biden said at the
same meeting chaired by Obama.

"What Pakistan does not want, as a matter of faith, is a unified Afghan government that is led by a Pashtun sympathetic
to India" like President Hamid Karzai, he said.