CANCELLED – The future of U.S. policy in Afghanistan
100 days of Imran Khan
Girls' education research and policy symposium
Pakistan’s main extremist challenge in 2019 and beyond is no longer a violent insurgency waged by the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan, as it was a few years ago. Indeed, Pakistan’s new extremists are hardliners who do not (yet) engage in mass-casualty terrorist attacks, but in massive, disruptive protests over the issue of blasphemy. Over the last few years, they have been emboldened by the state’s lack of enforcement against them and the failure to publicly provide a credible counter-narrative.The fight against these extremists, more than any other, will define whether Pakistan changes course for the better.
[On Pakistan's outreach to India and Lashkar-e-Taiba] This is an easy win for both Khan and the army. And one they can both agree on without changing the army’s fundamentals vis-a-vis India.
It will take more than cosmetic steps by Pakistan to get the Trump administration to unfreeze security assistance [to Pakistan]. Washington is looking for serious and sustained efforts against the Haqqanis [Haqqani Network], and active measures to incentivize the Taliban to engage in peace talks. I also suspect that any resumption of security assistance would be phased, focusing first on restoring military exchanges and narrowly-targeted counterterrorism assistance programs.