Uncle Sam’s Pakistan
Pakistan has long been a close ally of the United States. Forging strong ties with Pakistani military and intelligence services, Washington embraced a series of dictators. It was during the draconian 11-year rule of General Zia ul-Haq that defined the strategic relationship between Washington and Islamabad. Zia heavily Islamicized Pakistan and vastly increased the number of religious schools. Later, the U.S. supported Pervez Musharraf, another military dictator, to the end of his disastrous rule in August 2008. Today, Pakistan is on the edge of bankruptcy. There is massive unemployment, skyrocketing inflation, shortages of food and extensive power cuts. Conditions are ripe for upheaval in Uncle Sam’s Pakistan. And Washington’s response? It pours fuel on the fire by bombing and attacking Pakistan in pursuit of its so-called war on terror. A war, which many Pakistanis are opposed to.
Tariq Ali, an internationally renowned writer and activist, was born in Lahore, Pakistan. For many years he has been based in London where he is an editor of New Left Review. A charismatic speaker, he is in great demand all over the world. In his spare time, he is a filmmaker, playwright, and novelist. He is the author of many books including The Clash of Fundamentalisms, Pirates of the Caribbean, Speaking of Empire & Resistance with David Barsamian, The Duel: Pakistan on the Flight Path of American Power, The Obama Syndrome, The Extreme Centre and The Forty-Year War in Afghanistan: A Chronicle Foretold.