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Pakistan & Afghanistan: Descent into Chaos

Program #RASA003. Recorded in Seattle, WA on June 16, 2008.

The chickens are coming home to roost for the United States in Pakistan and Afghanistan. Alliances with warlords, corrupt politicians, double-dealing intelligence agencies and military dictators have led to disastrous outcomes. Pakistan and Afghanistan are joined at the hip. They share bonds of kinship, culture, languages and religion. There are large Pakhtoon populations on both sides of the 1,500 mile, (2,400 km) border. Pakistan and Afghanistan are experiencing Taliban insurgencies. In Kabul, U.S.-backed Hamid Karzai sits upon a shaky throne. The former Unocal oil company consultant has narrowly escaped assassination. His counterpart in Islamabad, Asif Ali Zardari, husband of the slain Benazir Bhutto, and who spent years in jail on criminal charges, is walking on eggshells. Meanwhile, the Americans keep bombing schools and wedding parties in both countries. And now Washington is carrying out attacks by its troops inside Pakistan.

Speaker(s):

Ahmed Rashid

Ahmed Rashid has been described as "the most influential journalist in the world." Based in Lahore, he has been reporting on Afghanistan, Pakistan and Central Asia for many years. His articles appear in leading newspapers and magazines all over the world. He is a guest on major TV and radio outlets. His book Taliban was an international best seller. He is also the author of JihadDescent into Chaos, and Pakistan on the Brink.


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