August 9, 2007

Pakistan spells danger


Pakistan remains possibly the biggest dilemma for the United States in the war on terror. Despite providing relative stability to a notoriously unstable country, Pakistan under President Musharraf remains a dictatorship. As such the risk is that without any avenue for the people of Pakistan to express their will at the ballot box, Pakistan remains susceptible to instability, extremism, ongoing violence. Its foreign policy too, remains very fragile.

Stability will depend on whether real democracy can be restored and in the meantime the U.S. faces the difficult task of cultivating a push toward democratic principles whilst concurrently shifting some military emphasis on the nation where, as recent U.S. intelligence indicate, Al Qaeda is reorganizing. Difficult because Washington must not do anything that might compromise the fragile U.S.-Pakistan alliance thats keeping Musharraf in office.
According to well-placed analysts, Pakistan serves as a sanctuary, financial center and training base for Taliban fighters intent on operating within Afghanistan.

Military intervention in Pakistan, however, would be a recipe for disaster and would require at least 250,000 troops.

5 comments:

Debbie said...

I think Obama was looking for the sound bite on the evening news, which he got. I don't think he meant to propose a ground war, probably just an air strike.

I'm not for sending in large numbers of troops, that would be a bad idea.

American Interests said...

Thanks for your comments Debbie. I believe you may right about Obama's motivations in terms of his remarks. I forgot to mention in my comment on your site, that was an excellent post.

Donald Douglas said...

Nice posting, Ottavio! Pakistan and the U.S. form a real Machiavellian relationship. I think you're right to suggest it's dangerous.

Jeb said...

Lots of good points here. I definitely agree with this point in particular: "...the risk is that without any avenue for the people of Pakistan to express their will at the ballot box, Pakistan remains susceptible to instability, extremism, ongoing violence."

Well said, Otto.

Cheers,
Jeb

American Interests said...

Donald: Befitting Machiavelli! An apt term to describe the relationship...Thank you

Jeb: You have highlighted the crux of the matter. Democracy is the wests best defence ...Thank You