Pakistan America Relations

Topics: Pakistan, Benazir Bhutto, Taliban Pages: 10 (3602 words) Published: December 23, 2010

Pakistan was founded on 14 August, 1947 along with India when the two nations achieved independence from the British Colonial Empire. The partition of the sub continent had occurred along ethnic-religious lines with Pakistan created in those adjoining territories that had majority Muslim populations. Thus the country of Pakistan with seventy million people had above 90% Muslim population. On the other hand, India had a majority Hindu population but Muslims were also a sizeable second minority group comprising 15% of the Indian population. The regions comprising Pakistan included the provinces of Sind, Punjab, Balochistan and Northwest Frontier Province on the western side of India and the province of East Bengal in the east of India. The two wings of eastern and western Pakistan were separated by a thousand miles of Indian territories. India inherited most of the infrastructure from the colonial establishment and Pakistan received some share out of assets. However, the regions comprising the land of Pakistan were less developed as compared to India and the administrative infrastructure was also limited. Both countries gained some military assets left over after the end of the World War Two. The main challenges that Pakistan faced at the time of its independence were related to its security fears, lack of infrastructure in the country and limited financial resources. The creation of two separate states and the division of the countries over ethno-religious lines had create a large migration across the two countries accompanied by ethnic cleansing, rioting and looting. The partition of the sub continent had been a contentious debacle and India and Pakistan had disputed division of assets as well as territories of the two countries. The state of Kashmir was a major cause of dispute as both India and Pakistan made claims for the state. The dispute led to a limited war in 1948 that resulted in one third of the Kashmir state occupied by Pakistan and the other two thirds overtaken by India.

The initial years 1947-1952

After the creation of the two countries, Pakistan followed a more pro western policy whereas the Indian government defined its foreign policy with a more leftist to non aligned stance. Pakistan was looking for strong friends in order to persuade its bigger and much stronger neighbor India to give in to its claims over the territory of Kashmir. Pakistan also needed financial support for its infrastructure development and modernization of its armed forces. Right from the beginning the founder father of Pakistan sent its representative to the US government for financial and military assistance. Pakistan based its case on the post World War scenario of confrontation between the Soviet Union and the West. Pakistan contented that the Soviet Union wanted to get access to the Arabian Sea and to increase its influence in the Middle East. Pakistan was a nation beyond Afghanistan that could avert such Soviet designs. Pakistan as a Muslim state had no affiliations with the communists and was a natural regional ally for the United States. On the other hand, the ruling party in India, the Indian National Congress, and India’s leaders were closer in ideology to socialism and the Soviet Union. As a US ally in the region, Pakistan could provide a foot hold for the US in the region against any Soviet expansionist efforts in South Asia.

From the US perspective, the United States was more occupied in the post war reconstruction in Western Europe and Japan, its containment efforts in South East Asia and the Middle East. The United States in the initial years of Pakistan was less interested in getting involved in the emerging conflicts of South Asia. The Pakistanis wanted to strengthen their relations with the US so as to get an advantage in their confrontation with India over Kashmir. On the other hand, the US did not see the usefulness of a strong relationship with Pakistan and US interests in Pakistan were...
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