Relations between Pakistan and US have always been a tale of seasonal relationship with Pakistan criticizing US of being a friend only at time of its need and leaving Pakistan high and dry afterwards. The US accuses Pakistan of partnering only for its economic interests. Resultantly, the US policy has always focused on winning individuals which play important role in Pakistan. The international events after 9/11 brought a realization to both the nations about closer cooperation. The public statements by leadership of both countries focused on long lasting and strategic relations. US publicly admitted leaving Pakistan after Russian withdrawal, the F-16 issue and admitted that sanctions were counterproductive. Pakistani leadership came out to reverse anti US sentiments by convincing public that partnership in war on terror (WOT) is in interest of both Nations. However this way forward could only move few paces when it was challenged by adverse international hands. The US was targeted from within by creating a silent divide between Pentagon, the government and CIA. Media proved one of the major weapons as writers like David Kilcullen persuaded the US administration that one cannot hope to solve the situation in Afghanistan without getting involved in Pakistan. He wrote that there are sections of the military and the security apparatus which are a rogue state within a state. They have a history of supporting the Taliban. He also raised the fear of collapsing Pakistan and its nuclear asset falling in hands of terrorists. Such perceptions led to an increased trust deficit which brought visible change in U.S policy towards Pakistan. The perception game does work but only till reality takes over. The growing anger over the perceived impertinence and rudeness of U.S towards Pakistan could cost Washington heavily in Afghanistan. The conflicting US policies by Pentagon, CIA, and White House have failed to come up with any solution for the ongoing war in Afghanistan for the last nine years. It will have to abandon its heavy-handed approach in Pakistan if it wants to make the partnership work. Solution lies in looking inwards and not in blame games, more accommodation and understanding of others national interests. WOT in Afghanistan needs a systematic transition towards political solution as mistrust amongst stakeholders at this crucial stage may lead the region to disaster. Leadership on both sides must understand the implications of Pak-US relations for the regional and global peace. HAMID WAHEED, March 25.