Senate panel cuts Pakistan's aid in response to doctor's conviction:
Senate appropriators unanimously voted Thursday to cut Pakistani aid by $33 million, or $1 million for every year a Pakistani doctor will spend in prison for helping the CIA find Osama bin Laden.
While the cut represents a small fraction of U.S. aid to Pakistan, the 30-0 vote in favor of the amendment from Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) highlights the tension between the two countries sparked by Wednesday's sentencing in Pakistan of Shakil Afridi on treason charges by a tribal court.
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The cut represents about 4 percent of the $800 million set aside for Pakistan next fiscal year, including $250 million in foreign military aid and another $50 million for Pakistan's counterinsurgency efforts. The original $800 million was already far below the $2.3 billion the Obama administration is requesting for Pakistan.
The $800 million referred to in the article is evidently the Overseas Contingency Operations portion of the total foreign assistance request for Pakistan. Another $1.5 billion or so in annual nonmilitary aid regularly goes to Pakistan under the Enhanced Partnership with Pakistan Act of 2009.
See this Congressional Research Service report for lots and lots of details.
So, how much assistance are we giving to Pakistan this year? According to ForeignAssistance.gov, the FY-13 request is $2,227,600,000 in total. Minus that big 33 mil, of course.
Divide the Senate's $33 million penalty by the total of 2 billion 227 million the administration is requesting, and you get 1.48 percent. Or, approximately, a senator's lunch money. If the Pakistani big-shots even notice that bite, I'd be surprised.
Don't break your arm patting yourself on the back, Lindsey.