Author(s): Anthony H Cordesman, Varun Vira
As the events surrounding the death of Osama Bin Laden make all too clear, Pakistan is passing through one of the most dangerous periods of instability in its history. This instability goes far beyond Al Qa’ida, the Taliban, and the war in Afghanistan. A net assessment of the patterns of violence and stability indicate that Pakistan is approaching a perfect storm of threats, including rising extremism, a failing economy, chronic underdevelopment, and an intensifying war, resulting in unprecedented political, economic and social turmoil. The Burke Chair at CSIS has developed an working draft of a net assessment that addresses each of these threats and areas of internal violence in depth, and does so within in the broader context of the religious, ideological, ethnic, sectarian, and tribal causes at work; along with Pakistan’s problems in ideology, politics, governance, economics and demographics.