A Mutiny Grows in Punjab

Securing Pakistan is far more important than “victory” in Afghanistan. And the U.S. counterinsurgency campaign is only stoking extremist flames in the Hindu Kush. Washington must pull back.

Issue: Mar-Apr 2011

U.S. STRATEGY toward Pakistan is focused on trying to get Islamabad to give serious help to Washington’s campaign against the Afghan Taliban. There are two rather large problems with this approach. The first is that it is never going to happen. As U.S. diplomats in Pakistan themselves recognize (and as was made ever so clear by the WikiLeaks dispatches), both Pakistani strategic calculations and the feelings of the country’s population make it impossible for Islamabad to take such a step, except in return for U.S. help against India—which Washington also cannot deliver.

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