Never before President Trump has the world witnessed any major politician to decide matters of global reverberations on twitter. But with Trump, it seems that the role of consultation has decreased in policy formulation or decision-making. Trump only needs a smartphone to make a foolish comment on twitter. The “Twitterati” President’s New Year tweet accusing Pakistan of harboring terrorist and giving US nothing but lies and deceits has further damaged the already strained relations of the two countries.

However, soon after the irresponsible tweet, many US official including civil and military ones have attempted to bridge the widening gap between the two countries on how to take the war on terror to a logical conclusion. First, it was a telephonic conversation between Army Chief Qamar Bajwa and Commander Centcom, Gen Joseph L. Votel where Votel wanted Pakistan to seek Afghan nationals who according to their understanding are using Pakistani soil against Afghanistan, which was undermining Islamabad’s efforts and sacrifices. Now the US diplomat Alice Wells has visited Islamabad and conveyed Washington’s wish to work in collaboration with Pakistan to bring peace and order to Kabul.

Nonetheless, on the surface of the things, it seems that two different US administrations are working as far as bilateral relations between Washington and Islamabad are concerned. One is the Trump White House and the other is the attendant officials and the career Pentagon and diplomatic staff. The former relies on bullying tactics to mold Pakistan whereas the latter uses diplomacy as a tool to achieve the desired results.

The latest efforts of the Commander Centcom and Assistant Secretary Alice Wills can be seen as a display of the latter approach to sooth down offended Islamabad and its officials who feel betrayed by the tweet of the American president. The latest efforts on the part of the US officials can also be seen as attempts of damage control. These efforts will, hopefully, bring the rationalists and pragmatists in both countries together, though the first day of the meeting between US and Pakistani officials didn’t achieve much. In the latest round of diplomatic engagement, both sides relied on their respective narratives as far as the war on terror and stability in Afghanistan was concerned.

Whereas such sort of engagement between the two sides is crucial, there is a great public disconnect within Pakistan. A majority of Pakistani public views the US war on terror just another excuse to further its imperialist designs in the region. Such public disconnect needs to be addressed and sorted if the US wants to take the Pakistani public and Parliament to cooperate in the war on terror.