Trump Defends Soviet Union’s 1979 Invasion of Afghanistan

US President Donald Trump speaks during a cabinet meeting at the White House on Wednesday

The government offered no official reaction to Trump, but late in the night it published an e-book on the ministry of external affairs website titled: "India-Afghanistan: A historic and time-tested relationship".

It was not immediately clear which library Trump was referring to, but Delhi reacted sharply to Trump's jibe at PM Modi, saying that it has been doing huge development work in the war-ravaged country that spans across building roads, dams, schools and even parliament.

The Times of India reported pushback from "official sources" in India, who said libraries may be part of that country's community development outlay in Afghanistan, but only a small part in comparison to the billions being spent on roads, dams and Afghanistan's new parliament building. The Obama administration had always lauded India's contribution and the role it played in improving the lives of people.

"This mockery is a slander against every ally that has supported the USA effort in Afghanistan with troops who fought and often died", the piece says.

To begin with, it is time to recognise that the U.S.'s South Asia Strategy for Afghanistan, as announced by Mr. Trump in August 2017, has been discarded.

"The tenor and tone of the American President describing the Prime Minister of India is not in good taste and is completely unacceptable", senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel said.

"The objective has been to cater to the needs of the Afghan people and earn their goodwill and India has achieved these aims", Jacob told Al Jazeera.

Trump took the swipe at Narendra Modi at a White House news conference after his first cabinet meeting of the year where he urged India Pakistan Russia and others in the region to do more following his decision to halve the US troops presence in Afghani
Trump Gives Weird History Lesson on Afghanistan and Russia

India has been one of the most enthusiastic countries over the USA mission in Afghanistan, where the former Taliban regime sheltered fiercely anti-Indian militants. And look at the results today. However, there is a need of orderly U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan, he added. Violence in Afghanistan continues to increase, attacks in Kabul refuse to cease, Taliban has bounced back and is negotiating from a position of strength and the operational capabilities of Afghan National Army remains questionable. Two years ago, U.S. troops levels were increased to more than 14,000 from 8,600 when Trump was sworn into office. And literally they went bankrupt; they went into being called Russian Federation again, as opposed to the Soviet Union. India has made the most of the limited space that was granted to it, and that too, in an extremely hard environment.

"India is contributing in developmental projects like health, roads and education".

Afghan National Security Adviser Hamdullah Mohib Friday appreciated India's role in reconstruction of the war-ravaged country during talks with his Indian counterpart Ajit Doval in New Delhi. The American mantra has been that India was rendering invaluable help to Afghanistan.

Reacting sharply to Trump's crack at Modi, BJP general secretary Ram Madhav said India has been doing vast development work in Afghanistan for which the people of the war-ravaged country "thank us, no matter what others do or don't". The paper, owned by longtime Trump ally Rupert Murdoch, called the comments "cracked history".

India has tried to be in the room when the Afghan peace process is discussed in multilateral fora. And they appreciate the quiet and positive approach of India in their country.

In his statement issued here on Wednesday, Dr Faisal said the peace in Afghanistan can only be achieved through dialogues between the stakeholders. Trump's impulses are going to dictate America's "drawdown" rather than the strategic realities of Afghanistan.

Imran Khan was sworn in as Pakistan's Prime Minister in August past year. Pakistan denies the charges.

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