Clinton ‘Charm Offensive’ Yields Growing Distrust in Pakistan

Secretary Dismisses Pakistani Complaints About Civilian Deaths

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s three day visit to Pakistan was supposed to be a “charm offensive,” where America’s top diplomat could shore up Pakistani support for pro-US policies (which chiefly translates into massive wars across the nation).

But in the end it ended up underscoring just how widespread distrust of the US government is across the nation, and that criticism of America’s policies are not the exclusive domain of insurgents in dusty tribal areas.

Clinton got an earful from Pakistanis. Students and journalists condemned the US for the large number of civilian casualties in its drone strikes. The secretary shrugged, “there’s a war going on.”

The Pakistanis seem uncomfortable with fighting such a large number of wars on America’s behalf, and particularly when the US seems to follow each new war with a demand for more. Secretary Clinton lamented that “we’re not getting through” to the Pakistanis, but the growing outcry since her visit suggests maybe she did get through, and they just don’t like what they’re hearing.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.