President Trump on Wednesday mocked Indian Prime Minister Modi for funding a library in Afghanistan, suggesting it was of no use. Then went on to suggest the country was responsible for making Russia bankrupt.
Trump brought up India´s aid during a rambling press appearance at a cabinet meeting as he defended his push for the United States to invest less overseas.
While stating that he got along with Modi, Trump said the Indian leader was “constantly telling me he built a library in Afghanistan.”
“You know what that is? That´s like five hours of what we spend,” Trump said.
“And we’re supposed to say, ´Oh, thank you for the library.´ I don´t know who’s using it in Afghanistan,” Trump said. Stereotyping Afghanistan as a barbaric community
It was unclear to which project Trump was referring, but India has committed $3 billion in assistance to Afghanistan since US-led forces toppled the extremist Taliban regime after the September 11, 2001 attacks.
He also pointed to the 1979-1989 Soviet occupation of Afghanistan, saying: “Russia used to be the Soviet Union. Afghanistan made it Russia because they went bankrupt fighting in Afghanistan.”
Projects have included the reconstruction of an elite high school in Kabul and scholarships to India for 1,000 Afghan students each year.
India has a strategic need to keep positive and developed relations with Afghanistan as it sees the country as a major ally in surrounding Pakistan from both sides. And controlling the Pushto influence in the northern part of the country.
Building the library is part of the grand master plan which analysts suggest is about managing the history and influence in the country.
Inaugurating the Afghan parliament building in 2015 after it was reconstructed and financed by India, Modi promised to promote programs “empowering Afghan youth with modern education and professional skills.”
India has started invested heavily in Afghanistan, since the US mission in Afghanistan, where the former Taliban regime sheltered anti-Indian militants.