Jihadi Groups, Nuclear Pakistan, and the New Great Game

Jihadi Groups, Nuclear Pakistan, and the New Great Game

Jihadi Groups, Nuclear Pakistan, and the New Great Game

Jihadi Groups, Nuclear Pakistan, and the New Great Game

Excerpt

Few nations are more central to the security of their region yet more fraught with danger than Pakistan. It is a country with deep internal schisms and with nuclear weapons, attempting to simultaneously rebuild democracy and fend off regional instability and avowed enemies. Of all the world's nuclear powers, Pakistan is the one most susceptible to some form of armed conflict or internal disintegration.

For the United States and other nations concerned with security in South and Central Asia, one of the most ominous trends has been the growing influence of Jihadist groups in Pakistan which feel obligated to wage “holy war” against everything that they perceive as “non-Islamic.” Their objective would be a Pakistani government similar to the Taliban regime in Afghanistan. The danger this would pose to regional stability and U.S. interests is clear.

In this monograph, Dr. Ehsan Ahrari, of the Armed Forces Staff College, assesses Jihadi groups from the framework of a new “Great Game" for influence in Central Asia involving an array of states. He argues that, if this competition leads to increased violence, outside states including the United States could be drawn in. On the other hand, if the region stabilizes, it could provide solid economic and political partners for the United States. A well-designed American strategy, Ahrari contends, might help avoid crises or catastrophe.

The Strategic Studies Institute is pleased to offer this study to further American understanding of Central and South Asian security and provide a framework for an effective U.S. strategy there.

DOUGLAS C. LOVELACE, JR.
Director
Strategic Studies Institute . . .

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