Monday, January 16, 2012

Springtime of Nations: Ten Separatist Movements to Watch in 2012

Some of Pakistan’s divisions are well aired in the Western media—the dispute with India over Kashmir, the government’s half-hearted (to put it generously) war with Islamists in their lawless Waziristan region, and the corrosive effects of their intelligence service, ISI, on Pakistani politics.  But the dispute that has been taking the largest toll in this most fractious of all hodgepodge nations is the brutal government war against separatists in Baluchistan (also spelled Balochistan), Pakistan’s largest province, which covers 44% of its territory.  Nearly all parts of Pakistan have secessionist movements or have had them, including Punjab, Kashmir, and Sindh, and Waziristan is in the de facto control of local warlords.  But it is in Baluchistan that separatist national feeling is strongest.

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