Monday, June 25, 2012

Why Pakistan Is on the Brink

For three decades, peace in Afghanistan has been interlinked with Pakistan's policy toward its landlocked western neighbor. The debate has recently shifted with the change in the dynamics of regional politics and security. The state of peace in the post-2014 Afghanistan hinges on the future of Pakistan, which has reached the highest level of failure and fragility since 1947 when the Muslim state was founded. Bob Woodward quoted President Obama saying that 'poison' (the war in Afghanistan) had actually shifted to Pakistan. While Pakistan continues to regularly feature on the top of the world's Failed States IndexNewsweek called it the "most dangerous place on the earth."  What eminent Pakistani journalist Ahmed Rashid shares in his latest book Pakistan on the Brink is too obvious but very alarming. Pakistan is currently in deep internal trouble economically and politically but it is also a deeply troubling state for its neighbors and the United States. Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta recently said the United States was fast running out of patience with Pakistan (considering its unwillingness to cooperate in the war on terror).  Rashid, whose book Taliban became a New York Times bestseller, admits that Pakistan faces even a "much more dangerous situation" than Afghanistan. While Islamabad pretends to cooperate with the United States in fighting radical groups, it also retains not-so-secret contacts with Taliban'sHaqqani Network that killed American soldiers and attacked the U.S. embassy in Kabul.
Pakistan on the Brink by Ahmed Rashid – review    Fatima Bhutto

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