India upset at US F-16 support to Pak as reward for ammo supply to Ukraine

Although the United States is a QUAD partner and a close ally, India has not taken the Biden administration’s decision to provide USD 450 million F-16 fighter support to Pakistan lying down and expressed its displeasure through diplomatic channels to Washington.

While the US has provided support in the name of counter-terrorism and as per lifetime F-16 fighter support contract with Pakistan, the real reasons lie within the Rawalpindi Headquarters and with Army Chief Gen Qamar Jawed Bajwa. Washington, on its part, has let India know that the multi-million support will not impact India or alter the military balance in the Indian sub-continent.

However, the Modi government is not amused with this development and has let the Biden administration know about its views on the entire issue as the fighters will be used against India like they were on February 27, 2019 as a retaliation to India’s Balakot strike on Jaish-e-Mohammed terrorist camp a day earlier.

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Pakistan and US watchers believe that the F-16 support has been given to Rawalpindi because of the continues support to the UK’s airbridge to Ukraine. Gen Bajwa has been instrumental in supplying ammunition in support of Ukraine’s war effort against Pakistan’s newfound ally Russia using British aircraft.


It is also a reward for the Pakistan Army led by Gen Bajwa for remaining neutral during the ouster of former PM Imran Khan Niazi, who once was weaponized by the same Army Chief to get rid of Nawaz Sharif in the last general elections. Niazi was in Moscow and met ally Russian President Vladimir Putin on February 24, the day the Red Army invaded Ukraine.

It is also US recognition for Gen Bajwa’s efforts to lower down temperatures with India on the Line of Control (LoC) with guns falling silent on the borders. Although the support is only to maintain the F-16 fighters with Pakistan and not upgradation of military capabilities or fresh ordnance or air to air missiles, India is cheesed with the narrative put out by the US State Department to justify the foreign military sale for sustainment and related equipment for the fighters.

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