Please update your browser

You're using a version of Internet Explorer that isn't supported by Questia.
To get a better experience, go to one of these sites and get the latest
version of your preferred browser:

Pakistan: Militancy, the Transition to Democracy and Future Relations with the United States

By Shafqat, Saeed | Journal of International Affairs, Fall-Winter 2009 | Go to article overview

Pakistan: Militancy, the Transition to Democracy and Future Relations with the United States


Shafqat, Saeed, Journal of International Affairs


Pakistan's geostrategic location has made it a country of pivotal importance from the Cold War to the present day. Geography not only shapes Pakistan's foreign policy, but also its defense considerations and strategic outlook. Its crucial position in South Asia, with its proximity to the Arabian Peninsula and access to the Horn of Africa and Central Asia, make it a strategically attractive and unavoidable state for global and regional powers. China continues to be a reliable friend and considers Pakistan a window of strategic opportunity. (1) For Russia, Pakistan could offer access to "warm waters" if Afghanistan were to gain stability, thus improving the level of trust between the two nations. India's imminent emergence as a regional power will likely be contested by Pakistan, and the peace process between the two rivals will continue at a snail's pace.

Pakistan continues to have strong cultural and strategic partnerships with Iran and Saudi Arabia. (2) Iran's nuclear ambitions, and the growing consensus among the Great Powers to curb these, may boost the geostrategic value of Pakistan in the region. With the recent construction of the Gwadar Port, which now serves as a gateway to the Gulf States, Pakistan's importance will only increase in the region. In the coming decades, as the rivalry among global powers to dominate the Indian Ocean intensifies, it becomes likely that whichever power influences the Persian Gulf will control not only the Arabian Sea but also the Indian Ocean. (3) In addition to its strategic geopolitical significance, the global war on terrorism has enhanced Pakistan's significance as a regional hub of terrorism. Pakistan is all at once a country of origin, a destination, a conduit and a victim of global jihad. According to Bruce Riedel's characterization, Pakistan has emerged as the "critical battlefield" in the war against global jihad. (4)

In the post-9/11 world, U.S. policy toward Pakistan has undergone a paradigm shift. In less than a decade, Pakistan has graduated from being a frontline state to being a NATO ally and strategic partner. Since 2002, Pakistan has been the recipient of over $10.5 billion in U.S. military and economic assistance; and more than $1.5 billion in non-military aid is pledged annually for the next five years. (5) From an American military perspective, this region is crucial for global stability and American security as it is home to numerous countries that have supported, funded or politically backed global terrorist groups. The list includes Pakistan, Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia, Israel and India. With the exception of Israel and India, this geographical area is under the responsibility of the U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM), currently the U.S. military's most important regional command.

American-Pakistani relations are affected by several dynamics. First, it is clear that this shift in U.S.-Pakistan relations is driven primarily by a regional security imperative of which considerations of oil flow, energy needs, regional stability and the global war on terrorism are contributing factors. It is thus vital for the United States to build a strategic partnership with Pakistan. Pakistan has provided the United States with logistical support, airspace and intelligence in the 1950-60s, 1980s and today. From 1979 to 1989, Pakistan played a key role in organizing and supporting the U.S.-led Afghan resistance movement against Soviet occupation. From this period emerges many of today's global terrorism challenges. Second, the U.S. has had an abiding interest specifically in Pakistan because of Pakistan's role in Cold War policies of containment, present-day concerns over Iran, the global war on terror, a Central Asian energy corridor and Pakistan's nuclear assets. There have been "low" and "high" periods in this relationship however, depending on the size and scale of perceived threats to U.S. security interests in a given period. (6)

Third, the U.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Pakistan: Militancy, the Transition to Democracy and Future Relations with the United States
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.