New Delhi: US President Donald Trump has described Prime Minister Narendra Modi as a friend, who told him that the US did not get anything out of Afghanistan, according to a new book written by senior journalist Bob Woodward. “Prime Minister Modi of India is a friend of mine, he (Trump) said. I like him very much,” Trump is quoted as saying in Woodward’s book ‘Fear: Trump in the White House’ The book has stirred a fresh row over its description of Trump as chaotic, mercurial and uninformed.
Citing Woodward, news agency PTI said that Trump’s comment came during a situation meeting on July 19, 2017, in White House, three weeks after he had met the Indian Prime Minister in White House.
“He (Modi) told me the US has gotten nothing out of Afghanistan. Nothing. Afghanistan has massive mineral wealth. We don’t take it like others – like China,” Trump is quoted as saying in the book, during the July 19 situation room meeting. “The US needed to get some of Afghanistan’s valuable minerals in exchange for any support. I’m not making a deal on anything until we get minerals. And the US ‘must stop payments to Pakistan until they cooperate’,” Trump said.
Six months later, on January 1, Trump announced that military aid to Pakistan should be stopped due to inaction over terrorism. “We’re losing big in Afghanistan. It’s a disaster. Our allies aren’t helping. Ghost soldiers – those paid but not serving – are ripping us off. NATO is a disaster and a waste, he said. The soldiers had told him that NATO staff were totally dysfunctional,” says the book. “Pakistan isn’t helping us. They’re not really a friend,” despite the USD 1.3 billion a year in aid the US gave them, Trump said.