U.S. - Pakistan relationship post-2014Printable Version
Thursday, October 18, 2012
U.S.-Pakistani relations have been defined by a curious mixture of antagonism and cooperation. Even before the 9/11 attacks, Pakistan was involved in the illegal proliferation of nuclear technology and support for militant Islamist organizations. Since 9/11, the bilateral relationship has rested on occasional cooperation against al-Qaeda, while being severely strained by state support for the Taliban, Haqqani Network and other militants at war against the Afghan state and the U.S.-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF).
With the ISAF mission drawing down to a close by the end of 2014, what is the future of this troubled relationship between "frenemies?" Will relations improve as the strain of the Afghan campaign diminishes? Or will the U.S. more openly express its bitterness once its military is no longer reliant on supply routes that pass through Pakistan? Will Pakistani support for terrorist groups like Lashkar-e-Taiba persist? There are factors that may only further radicalize the Pakistani security services following an ISAF drawdown such as the potential for renewed civil war and Indian "meddling" in Afghanistan. How will these affect relations with the United States?
Dr. Stephen Tankel
Dr. Timothy Hoyt
Professor of Strategy and Policy,
US Naval War College