Exclusive: New details on Obama's $7.5 billion aid package to Pakistan
Foreign Policy: 12/16/2009
The administration sent Congress its first mandated report on Pakistan strategy yesterday, part of the terms of the Kerry-Lugar Pakistan aid bill. The document isn't public, but a copy was obtained by The Cable, and it shows in new detail how the Obama team is thinking about Pakistan and how it intends to distribute the $7.5 billion in the package.
The report is notable in that it doesn't just focus on problem areas, as some observers had feared, and actually tackles nationwide and longer-term problems beyond the extremists now operating in Pakistan's northwest region. The message of the report is clear: The administration intends to show demonstrable results soon to justify and vindicate the program, while sewing the seeds for longer-term progress all the while.
The biggest chunk of the funds, $3.5 billion spread over five years, will go to "high impact, high visibility infrastructure programs," according to the report, focusing on the energy and agricultural sectors -- "programs that Pakistani citizens can see."
Another $2 billion will be directed to "focused humanitarian and social services," which includes extending the reach of the Pakistani government to areas where extremists now operate. Of that pot, $500 million will be earmarked for immediate post-crisis and humanitarian assistance, with the rest going to improving the quality and access to health and education.
The remaining $2 billion will go to building up the Pakistani government both at the national and local levels. The money will be split between funding actual government entities and improving the security and legal infrastructure overall.
Again, the focus here is on enabling the Pakistan government to control more areas within its borders. For example, the report states that "building Pakistani policing capacity is particularly important in order to sustain the recent security gains achieved by the Pakistani military in the NWFP and FATA."
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To read the original (leaked) document, click here