Archive for the 'Pakistan and the War on Terror: Conflicted Goals, Compr' Category


What Can the United States Do?

Any discussion of U.S. options in the circumstances discussed above must begin with a recognition that there are no alternatives to the policies currently being followed that are both good and radically different. Clearly, the st atus quo is becoming increasingly untenable. There is a growing conviction within the United St ates, in both the executive branch and Congress, that Pakistan must “do even more”(97) than it is currently doing. As Under Secretary of State R. Nicholas Burns put it directly but politely, “we would like to see a more sustained and effective effort by the Pakistani government to defeat terrorist forces on its soil. Al Qaida remains a potent force inside Pakistan, as is the Taliban. Defeating these enemies is essential to our effort to defeat terrorism in South Asia and around the world.”(98)
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Explaining Pakistan’s Counterterrorism Performance

The Afghan government’s dissatisfaction and now increasingly the American polity’s displeasure with Pakistan’s performance in counterterrorism operations are conditioned considerably by the perception of Pakistan’s unwillingness to crack down on terrorism comprehensively. This is a serious and, in actuality, complex charge.
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Understanding Pakistan’s Approach to the War on Terror

Although Pakistan has been a frontline state in the war on terror since the tragic events of September 11, 2001, there is no doubt that General Musharraf initially cast his lot with the United States mainly as a result of deep fears about what U.S. enmity might imply for Pakistan’s long standing rivalry with India, its efforts at economic revival, its nuclear weapons program, and its equities in the con ict over Kashmir.(6) Desirous of protecting Islamabad’s interests in these areas and to avoid Pakist an becoming a target in the campaign against terrorism, Musharraf reluctantly cut loose Islamabad’s ties with the Taliban-a force it had nurtured, trained, and equipped for almost a decade in its effort to secure control over Afghanistan-and stood aside as the U.S.-led coalition assisted its detested antagonist, the Northern Alliance, to rout its own clients and their al-Qaeda accomplices and seize power in Kabul. Because the al-Qaeda elements in Afghanistan during the 1990s were never directly dependent on the Pakistani Inter-Services Intelligence Directorate (ISID) for their success (despite maintaining a significant liaison relationship), the ejection of their Arab, African, and Central Asian mercenaries was viewed with fewer misgivings than the flight of the Pashtun-dominated Taliban, who were tied to Pakistan directly in terms of both patronage and ethnicity.(7)
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Pakistan and the War on Terror: Conflicted Goals, Compromised Performance

By Ashley J. Tellis
Carnegie Endowment for International Peace

Ashley J. Tellis is a senior associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, specializing in international security, defense, and Asian strategic issues. He was recently on assignment to the U.S. Department of State as senior advisor to the undersecretary of state for political affairs. Previously he was commissioned into the Foreign Service and served as senior advisor to the Ambassador at the U.S. Embassy in New Delhi and served on the National Security Council staff as special assistant to the President and senior director for strategic planning and southwest Asia. Prior to his government service, Tellis was senior policy analyst at the RAND Corporation and professor of policy analysis at the RAND Graduate School. He is the author of India’s Emerging Nuclear Posture (2001), and co-author of Interpreting China’s Grand Strategy: Past, Present, and Future (2000). He is the Research Director of the Strategic Asia program at NBR and co-editor of Strategic Asia 2007-08: Domestic Political Change and Grand Strategy.


Understanding Pakistan’s Approach to the War on Terror
Explaining Pakistan’s Counterterrorism Performance
What Can the United States Do?
Continue reading ‘Pakistan and the War on Terror: Conflicted Goals, Compromised Performance’

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