Mother of All Elections
CCS Research Staff
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"Possibly one of the biggest questions for the US is whether the new government will cooperate with current and future US policies -- particularly in the context of the War on Terror. The new government majority will likely appear secular but may also insist upon greater levels of sovereignty in terms of military operations in FATA and around the Afghanistan / Pakistan border region where Taliban, Al Qaeda, and terrorist networks flourish. If Musharraf is exiled, the US may find itself working more with the new General than with the new Prime Minister. Despite Benazir Bhutto's earlier promises to rid the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) of militants, Nawaz Sharif has stood strongly against any Western or Pakistani army involvement saying 'Pakistan's army was not created to fight against Pakistanis.' Ultimately, the elections in Pakistan and their fallout will not only be a gauge of the strength of democracy in the region, but of the relationship between the US and a new Pakistani government."
This article was published in Culture and Conflict Review (March 2008), v.2 no.2