Although the United States was amongst the first few nations that established diplomatic relationship with Pakistan on October 20, 1947 or just two months and six days after the country’s inception, the largely interest-based bilateral ties between Washington DC and Islamabad have had a roller-coaster ride during the last seven decades or so.

It’s said that Pakistan had played a crucial role in arranging the American President Richard Nixon’s 1972 visit to China, which had led to normalization of ties between the two estranged countries—just weeks away from a possible war perhaps.

In 1979, the US had raised concerns over Pakistan’s nuclear programme. In 1990, the “Pressler Amendment” had required the then US president to certify before the Congress that Pakistan did not have nukes. It had created a stir. The US was not happy with Pakistan’s nuclear tests of May 28, 1998.

The world super power was also least amused when Nawaz Sharif was ousted in a military coup by General Musharraf in 1999.

In recent years, as a result of Raymond Davis firing incident in Lahore on January 27, 2011, the May 2, 2011 secret American operation in Abbottabad that resulted in the death of Osama bin Laden and then the November 26, 2011 NATO attack on Salala Check-post on the Pak-Afghan border leading to deaths of 28 Pakistani soldiers, had badly affected the Pak-American relationship.

And then, the issue pertaining to the release of Dr Shakil Afridi, the Pakistani doctor who had run a fake vaccination campaign leading to the raid on bin Laden's Abbottabad compound in May 2011, is also a bone of contention between Washington DC and Islamabad.

Then, we all heard in May 2016 that the US Congress, which had withdrawn funds for an F-16 deal to force Pakistan to act against the Haqqani network just a week before, was considering another cut in a bid to persuade Islamabad to release Dr Shakil Afridi. It was also in May 2016 that Pakistan had condemned Donald Trump’s “ignorant” claim that he could force Islamabad to free a doctor who helped the CIA track down Osama bin Laden. Donald Trump was a US presidential candidate at that time and was yet to be elected to lead the world super power.

Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan, the then interior minister, told Donald Trump through media that Pakistan was not a colony of the United States, asserting that the country would itself decide the fate of Shakil Afridi.

Years 2014 and 2015 had witnessed both Pakistan and America treading on the road to rapprochement as the United States had used drone missiles to strike Pakistan's most-wanted militants like the Taliban leader, Mullah Fazlullah, in November 2014.

Fazlullah had managed to survive though. According to the “Washington Times,” Lt Gen Joseph Anderson of the US Army had admitted that Pakistani military’s Zarb-e-Azb operation against militants in North Waziristan had ‘fractured’ the Haqqani Network, long accused by the United States of having a safe harbor in Pakistan.

Apart from the above-mentioned happenings which led to serious tensions between Islamabad and Washington DC, following are some more major incidents that have marred Pak-US ties:

a) Several incidents of violence against American officials and US diplomats stationed in Pakistan turned the relationship sour. In November 1979, rumours that the United States had participated in the seizure of the Masjid Al-Haram, the Grand Mosque in Makkah, provoked a mob to attack the US Embassy in Islamabad. The Chancery was set ablaze, resulting in a loss of life.

b) In 1989, an attack on the American Center in Islamabad had resulted in the killing of six Pakistanis in crossfire with the police.

c) In March 1995, two American employees of the US Consulate in Karachi were killed and one wounded in an attack.

d) In November 1997, four US businessmen were brutally murdered while being driven to work in Karachi.

e) Pakistan tested its nukes on May 28, 1998 in retaliation to Indian nuclear tests conducted a fortnight earlier. This proved a major setback for the never-so-exemplary Pak-US ties.

f) In March 2002, a suicide attacker had detonated explosives in a church in Islamabad, killing two Americans associated with the embassy.

g) Unsuccessful attacks by terrorists on the Consulate General in Karachi in May 2002 also heightened the Pak-US diplomatic tension.

h) Another bomb was detonated near American and other businesses in Karachi in November 2005, killing three people and wounding15 others.

i) On March 2, 2006, a suicide bomber had detonated a car laden with explosives near a vehicle carrying an American Foreign Service officer to the US Consulate Karachi. The diplomat, the consulate’s locally-employed driver and three other people were killed in the blast, while 52 others were wounded.

j) In September 2008, an explosives-laden truck exploded at Islamabad’s Marriott Hotel, allegedly killing US Embassy personnel.

k) As briefly mentioned above, a CIA contractor Raymond Davis had reportedly killed two "armed" men in Lahore on January 27, 2011. Although the United States had contended that he was protected by diplomatic immunity because of his employment with the US Consulate in Lahore, Davis was jailed and charged by the Pakistani authorities with double murder and the illegal possession of a firearm.

On March 16, 2011, Davis was released after the families of the two killed men were paid $2.4 million as blood money. The-then US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, was extremely active in getting Davis released.

The incident had led to a diplomatic furor and deterioration in Pakistan-US ties, besides resulting in the resignation of the then Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi after he had stood firm contending that since Davis was not a diplomat, he could not be given blanket diplomatic immunity.