Alex McGann, Pakistan: An Idea in Crisis

In 1953 the city of Lahore in Pakistan saw the outbreak of serious riots in which shops were looted and mosques destroyed.  The target of this violence was the Ahmadiyya Muslim community, a small and esoteric sect of Islam founded in the nineteenth century.  The puritanical islamist elements in the country had been becoming increasingly fixated upon the status of the Ahmadiyya, whose unusual wealth and education met with resentment.  The chief demand of the rioters was that the Ahmadis be declared non-Muslim (a wish that was to be fulfilled). The riots, which cost the lives of a number of Ahmadis and the livelihoods of many more, concluded with the imposition of martial law.  Shortly thereafter a court of enquiry was convened to investigate the event.

To its credit, the enquiry possessed the astuteness and courage to disentangle from the masse of petty local interests and historical feuds a simple question: “who is a Muslim?” It was in asking this that the routine judicial enquiry was transformed into a fleeting moment of Islamic anagnorisis. Seemingly everyone had been bewitched into assuming that the answer would be as simple as the question and therefore was not worth the asking, even when an entire country was to be formed on its basis.  The true horror of the enquiry lay in finding this question, so simple, so essential and so universally assumed until then, unanswered.  Having consulted the divines, the enquiry concludes:

‘Keeping in view the several definitions given by the ulama [religious divines], need we make any comment except that no two learned divines are agreed on this fundamental. If we attempt our own definition as each learned divine has done and that definition differs from that given by all others, we unanimously go out of the fold of Islam. And if we adopt the definition given by any one of the ulama, we remain Muslims according to the view of that alim [divine] but kafirs [unbeliever] according to the definition of every one else.’[1]

In a flash, the absolute confusion of the Pakistani national ideal was revealed.  And at exactly the same time it showed the potential for this abstract, dire failure to transform into a murderous contagious madness on the street.  The state had been created as an explicitly Muslim state, at tremendous cost in lives and the loss of a secure indian identity. Yet here was evidence, measurable in corpses, that there was not, nor had there ever been, a sufficient definition of the Muslim. Thus, the whole state was unsound because this was not a natural state but an ‘ideological state’, as General Zia readily labeled it.  The burden of ideology is explanation and Pakistan was then and is now at a loss to explain itself.  It cannot explain itself as a Muslim homeland nor as a Muslim state.  The grand apparatus of state was built over an abyss.  And out of this dreadful void jump horrors that only a hypocrisy on a national scale could beget.

So we are left with question: how were a hundred million souls sold to an insensible concept? The Muslim league, the organization that led the Muslims of India to break away, used propaganda that encouraged no rigorous koranic doctrine, only a fearful unity against the Hindu persecutor.  The league’s leaflets urged supporters to ‘unite on Islam – become one’.  The express objective of this rhetoric was that Muslims would vote as a single quam – a community [2]. Thus, the spiritual dimension was almost immediately and completely eclipsed by the political.  It would remain so until after the founding of Pakistan, the new country pregnant with the unborn implications of politically expedient pseudo-theology.  It was Insanity to form a country for Muslims without any coherent definition of a Muslim, except as a term onto which an enormous and irreconcilable mass of contradictory ambitions was projected.   That was Jinnah’s Muslim: a tragically vague, politically expedient identity.  Nowhere is this dreadful madness more apparent than in the conclusion that although the ulama had no capacity at all to define the Muslim, they were ‘practically unanimous’ that ‘apostasy … is punishable with death.’[3]  Thus, we are left with the grotesque chaos of a complete freedom to kill on terms no-one understands.

Standing abreast of the wreckage of partition as the new country’s first head of state, Muhammad Ali Jinnah must have recognized the contradiction at the foundation. He was, as Tariq Ali put it, ‘asking. . . Hindus and Sikhs [to] . . . accept what he had refused to countenance: living under a majority composed of another religious group’[4].  What were his options at this point?  He could have taken the view of the ulama at the 1953 enquiry and excluded minorities from most facets of public life and governance.  This was not his solution.  Addressing the Constituent assembly on 11th August 1947, he said:

‘We should begin to work in that spirit and in course of time all these angularities of the majority and minority communities, the Hindu community and the Muslim community, because even as regards Muslims you have Pathans, Punjabis, Shias, Sunnis and so on, and among the Hindus you have Brahmins, Vashnavas, Khatris, also Bengalis, Madrasis and so on, will vanish. Indeed if you ask me, this has been the biggest hindrance in the way of India to attain the freedom and independence and but for this we would have been free people long long ago . . . You are free; you are free to go to your temples, you are free to go to your mosques or to any other place or worship in this State of Pakistan. You may belong to any religion or caste or creed that has nothing to do with the business of the State . . . We are starting in the days where there is no discrimination, no distinction between one community and another, no discrimination between one caste or creed and another. We are starting with this fundamental principle that we are all citizens and equal citizens of one State.’[5]

This is an extraordinary statement.  These words stand in utter contrast to those articulated only seven years earlier when Jinnah addressed the Muslim League as its President: ‘it is as dream that Hindus and Muslims can evolve a common nationality, and this misconception of one Indian nation has gone far beyond the limits, and is the cause of most of our troubles and will lead India to destruction, if we fail to revise our actions in time.[6]  Jinnah’s speech is, frankly, the repudiation of the idea of the nation by the father of the nation.  It is this truth, that Jinnah disavowed the logic of partition before all its casualties were in the ground, that no-one can face. Similarly, Muhammad Iqbal, the national poet and architect of the two state solution, admitted that

‘Nor should the Hindus fear that the creation of autonomous Muslim States will mean the introduction of a kind of religious rule in such States. The principle that each group is entitled to free development on its own lines is not inspired by any feeling of narrow communalism’.[7]

It is of course questionable to what extent either Jinnah or Iqbal, who we see are not committed to the logical conclusions of a Muslim state, really wanted the creation of Pakistan at all.  As late as 1939, Jinnah was insisting that Hindus and Muslims were “two nations who both must share the governance of their common motherland” so that ‘India may take its place amongst the great nations of the world’[8]. Even Iqbal in 1930 still imagined a Pakistan inside a wider Indian confederation[9].  Muslims feared Hindu-majority rule and the experience of democratic government, after the Congress Party’s resounding victory in the 1937 elections, convinced many that it could not work. Jinnah practically admitted that the coming of Pakistan was ‘foisted on him’[10] by the congress party of India, who had little will to compromise with Jinnah’s Muslim League after their victory in the Indian elections of 1937. It was the form not the existence of an undivided India that Jinnah took issue.  A central unitary state, with the expectation that such a state would privilege the majority Hindus, was Jinnah’s abhorrence.  ‘Pakistan’ was a bargaining chip in the dismissal of this configuration.  However, Congress was resolute and events overtook the Muslim League, which found itself in charge of an enormous country alien to its leaders who were, at least to begin with, ‘completely unprepared for the realities of complete separation from India’[11], as Anatol Lieven put it.  This and the cataclysmic mismanagement of partition that followed it, if nothing else, evidences an accidental nation: a cynical ploy turned political reality.

Another issue, rarely voiced for fear of chaos, is that Jinnah himself was Muslim only in the loosest possible sense.  In a way, the vacuous political Islam that brought Pakistan into existence was embodied in Jinnah.  If rhetoric was religiosity, he would stand alongside Hasan al- Banna for zeal, but in practice Jinnah ignored faith: he liked his whisky and apparently ate ham sandwiches with impunity[12].  Jinnah’s merely superficial piety is symbolic of the crisis of Muslim identity in Pakistan.

Pakistan as a Muslim country is only half a description of the country.  The other half is Pakistan as the Muslim Homeland in the subcontinent.  But this notion can hardly stand up.  Firstly, as of 2010 more than 177 million Muslims live in India.  Second, the great historic sites of subcontinental Islam, such as Hyderabad, remain in India as well.  The Muslim league itself ‘had its origins, its heart and by far the greatest part of its support in the north of what is now India’[13] and none of its leaders were ethnically native to the lands that came to compose independent Pakistan.  In fact, the Muslim League tacitly admitted the bankruptcy of the idea almost from the beginning.  Faced with a flood of refugees that their crumbling infrastructure had no power to accommodate, the Muslim League leadership in Karachi flatly denied that the new state welcomed all Muslims.  Only those from east Punjab were allowed.[14]  Of course, these warnings could not dissuade millions from migrating in fear of pogroms, and much of the anarchy of partition derives from this immense failure of forward-planning.

Of course the final and absolute dissolution of the notion of a Muslim home in the subcontinent came with the breakup of the country in 1971.  Bengali Nationalism had been on the rise throughout the sixties.  Bengalis composed a slight majority put were substantially underrepresented in government at all levels.   The problem came to a head with the national elections of 1970.  The Pakistan Peoples party, a western Pakistani party headed by Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, won 81 of 138 seats in west Pakistan.  In east Pakistan however, the Awami League, a Bengali nationalist party led by Sheikh Mujib-ur-Rehman, won 160 of 162 seats.  Mujib, who desired maximum autonomy for the east, demanded the right to form the new government.  This was unacceptable to the PPP, the army and the Punjabi elite.  Clashes erupted between Bengali protesters and the military.  On 25th March 1971, the military embarked on Operation Searchlight, a brutal campaign to repress opposition to the west in the east.  The mutiny of east Pakistani troops and the subsequent intervention of India resulted in the bifurcation of the Pakistan and birth of Bangladesh.

At that point no semblance of the idea of a united homeland for all the subcontinent’s Muslims could ever be held again.  Even with the thick blanket of selective ignorance customary in Pakistani intelligence circles, this was seen as ‘a catastrophe which called into question the two nation theory. . . and therefore the very meaning of the country.’[15]  The very same logic that had inspired the animosity to the Ahmadis in 1953 would motivate the unthinkable brutality brought down upon the Bengalis in 1971.  Out of the hideous abyss where a concrete idea of the Muslim, and therefore of compatriotism, should have been sprung a violent madness. The intangibility of the term, and therefore the radical instability of the nation, permitted a sudden descent into frenzied cruelty.  Just as the Ahmadis were thought to be kuffar so were the Bengalis believed to be ‘crypto-Hindus’, which meant, given that to be Muslim was to belong to the nation, the cessation of all their rights to life and property.  This terrible logic possessed those who went on to massacre hundreds of thousands[16].  The massacres in East Pakistan are seldom spoken of in the west.  No part of society has any interest in remembering them.[17]  This, then, is another existential fact, much like Muslim identity, about which Pakistan is spectacularly, often wilfully, self-deceiving.   Pakistan as we know it was born twice, in 1947 and in 1971, and in both cases hellish slaughter has been followed by a state of denial. Over 70% of Pakistanis today were born after 1971[18] meaning a majority never knew even the semblance of a Muslim home in the subcontinent but the underlying disease remains.  The same systemic intolerance that first marginalised and subsequently butchered the Bengalis continues to facilitate, as Sunil Khilnani writes, ‘the daily attrition and conflict that has bled the provinces of Sind and Baluchistan.’[19]

The perpetrator of these crimes, The Pakistani Military holds, and fully believes itself to hold, a preeminent position among the country’s institutions.  Unfortunately, the predominance of the military evinces the failure of civil society. It is the indispensible institution largely because, almost from the beginning, Pakistan was conceived of an endangered country. In terms of its efficiency, discipline, relative lack of corruption and meritocracy, the military is clearly distinguished from the ineffectual civilians arms of state.  And yet the military is, like the country, riven by contradiction.  It is dominated by a secular leadership but staffed by an increasingly disaffected soldiery, worn down by the disrepute of collaboration with America.

In the face of the military might of The United States and India, Pakistan has sought to fight to achieve its objectives through the use of proxies. The persistence of this strategy is largely based on its perceived success against the soviets in Afghanistan.  Pakistan used its intelligence agency, the ISI, to fund, primarily with American finance, the afghan resistance to the Russians.  In this they were phenomenally successful and the Pakistani military has ever since taken great pride in the soviet defeat.  The Pakistani taste for proxies as vehicles of strategy arose initially in 1947 with the use of thousands of Pashtun tribesmen were pushed into Kashmir to battle Indian forces.  The frustration of the Indian army was seen as a great and ingenious victory for Pakistani strategy.  The tactic has been reused, less effectively, in 1962 again in Kashmir, in 1971 against separatist Bengalis and even in support of the Sikh insurgency in Indian Punjab.  The apotheosis of this policy, Pakistan’s relationship with the Taliban, has come to represent the ideological contradictions at the heart of the state, as have already been elucidated.  In brief, the state finds itself in the patently absurd position of supporting the afghan Taliban and yet, simultaneously, fighting an existential struggle against the Tehrik-i-Taliban (the Pakistani Taliban).  There are differences to be sure but since both are drawn in very large part from the Pashtun minority, the two are inextricably bound and derive strength from one another.  The military insistence upon using the afghan Taliban as a proxy is consuming Pakistan itself through the TTP (Pakistani Taliban)[20].

As Ahmed Rashid reports, ‘The Pakistani army has no love for Islamic extremists now, but it differentiates between Afghan Taliban, which it sees as a potential ally in a pro- Pakistan Afghanistan if U.S. efforts there fail, and the Pakistani Taliban, which is viewed as a threat to the state to be eliminated.’[21]  It is this false distinction, forced on the military because of its continued delusion of the value of the Afghan Taliban as proxy, which undermines Pakistani foreign policy.  Even the support for the Afghan Taliban, supposing they could be cleanly differentiated from their Pakistani counterparts, is flawed. The Afghan Taleban remains coloured by its Pashtun ethnic background and yet, alongside the unclear notion of “strategic depth”, one Islamabad’s primary objectives in Afghanistan is to thwart Pashtun nationalism.[22]  The secular military’s doublethink regarding the Taliban as simultaneously integral and toxic to the state is a logical extension of the central contradiction of Pakistani political thought descending linearly from irreligious Jinnah’s manipulation of Muslim zeal to form the country.

Where better to find a cautionary tale than the worst humanitarian disaster of recent times?  The collapsing state that is the cold-sweat terror of the Pakistani elite: Syria.  Bashar al Assad, desperate to undermine the “Bush doctrine” of dictatorship removal, lest it be turned on him, but unable to openly oppose it, sought to thwart it secretively.  The strategy he arrived at consisted of ‘externalis[ing] the jihadi threat while turning its protagonists into (unwitting) tools of syrian foreign policy’[23].  In 2003, the Syrian government began to secretly indirectly aid terrorist networks across the Iraqi border, for the purpose of undermining US efforts in the country.  But the policy was fatally flawed.  With the commencement of violence in Syria itself in 2011, the same networks that the Syrian government had supported were turned upon it.  As the anarchy of the Syrian civil war became the new magnet for militant Islamism, the flow of jihadis went into reverse and large numbers began to enter Syria from Iraq.  The terrorist logistics that had developed at Syria’s borders were not merely sophisticated but self-perpetuating.  Syrian facilitators worked a network of safehouses and in Damascus, Latakia and Deir al-Zour in connection with tribes along the Iraqi border whose smuggling business was swiftly adapted to the situation.  Unfortunately, since the smuggling business had been devastated irreparably by war, the tribes had become entirely dependent financially upon the illicit transport of fighters across the border.  There was thus enormous monetary pressure to maintain and use the network which, if Iraq alone could not supply need for, would have to turn back on Syria itself.  Powered by the self-perpetuating logistics of terror, Al-Qaida in Iraq was easily transformed into today’s Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS).  Similarly, a vast expansion in madrassas, arms-smuggling, drugs and other forms of crime have rendered groups such as Lashkar-e-Taiba (a Pakistani terror group blamed for the 2008 Mumbai attacks), who were originally dependent on ISI (Pakistan Intelligence agency) funding, completely self-sufficient.[24]

There are crucial differences between Syria and Pakistan, namely a civilian democratically-elected government. Nevertheless, This is indeed a warning to Pakistan not least because the Pashtun’s economy is as dependent on terror’s finance as ever the Iraqi tribes were in the run up to Syria’s civil war.  Just as Syria became the principal point of entry for wannabe foreign jihadists entering Iraq[25], so has Pakistan long been the terror gateway into Afghanistan, and, until recently, the focal point of militant combat training.

Syria is merely one example among many.  This strategy has proved attractive at numerous times, to various governments but always disastrously backfired.  When the USA began its mobilization of the entire Islamic world against the soviet occupation of Afghanistan, it was extremely expedient for Islamic countries to ease internal tensions by redirecting the energies of their most incorruptible and ideologically driven citizens. The failure of this strategy is to be found in every country complicit in it but perhaps nowhere more so than in the grand architect of the entire scheme: the United States itself, which felt with the falling of the twin towers the bite of the dog it goaded into frenzy and set upon its soviet opponents some two decades earlier.    The wreckage of the world trade centers is the best evidence possible that no matter the strength of the handler, be it the Pakistani army or the world’s most powerful military, proxies are unacceptable as vehicles of foreign policy.  Some will brush off this comparison with assertions that the military in Pakistan is far too powerful to allow this kind of disintegration.  Such objections should bear in mind that it is largely the strength and coherence of the military, transcending sectarian divisions, which has preserved Bashar al Assad.

The “Janus-faced” use and abuse of the Taliban, as Anatol Lieven memorably termed it, evidences the unanswered question of ‘what the military, and indeed the country, is for? Memories persist at every social level of the sixth president of Pakistan (1978- 1988),  General Zia al Huq’s rhetoric of islamification and jihad against the Soviets in Afghanistan.  At the root of popular support for the Afghan Taliban lies in their perceived continuity with the mujahidin.  Their struggle was entirely sanctioned by Zia’s administration and by a naïve American enthusiasm popularly referred to as Charlie Wilson’s war.

Just as Jinnah aroused the fear and frenzy of the Muslim masses, fully expecting that their emotions would tamely wax and wane in complete accordance with his own exigencies so did Zia and his American handlers perceive nothing dangerous in implanting the rhetoric of jihad.  This is another catastrophic systemic failure of the political class right from the beginning:  the belief that the people’s passions could be detonated and then harmlessly dissipated the instant they ceased to be useful. In the beginning Jinnah asked of his new citizens that they forget the Islamic state they had fought and died for.  Now they, specifically the Pathans, are asked to forget the militancy, presently rebounding on Pakistan, that they were encouraged to take up only thirty years ago.  This expectation of amnesia will be disappointed; memory has given their emotions momentum and it is this independence of mind that Pakistan’s leaders have always refused to understand.

Syria represents one possible destination of Pakistan’s current direction of travel.  Others have mooted a real, boots-on-the-ground American incursion as the point at which Pakistan begins a trajectory of outright collapse.  What is clear is that these apocalyptic scenarios would be, if not unthinkable, far less probable if the country was not crisscrossed by cultural, ideological and social faultlines.  To solve the terrible error, there seem to be but three options: first, the adoption of a more generous and uncritical notion of the Muslim; secondly, a clear definition of the Muslim made in public, sanctioned by the state, guarded in public life and protected from contradiction; and thirdly, the recharacterization of the state as secular, with the Muslim and nonmuslim as equal citizens.  The first two options leave the non-Muslim minorities in an extremely precarious situation. What sort of an existence can the country many millions of Christians and Hindus hope to have when some much of the state’s ideological and moral energies are put to the definition of the Muslim?  This leads us to our final option: the rejection of Pakistan as Muslim state.  This is the natural conclusion of qaidism (the ideology of Jinnah) but would entail regret at the birth of the nation and the severe curtailment of the power of Islam in political life. Neither of these actions are publicly permissible.  Humility is too great a trauma and Islam too comforting an analgesic for the casting off of either.  Yet until they are abandoned Pakistan will remain a political anorexic suffering from a distorted image of the body politic, afflicted by attachment to the illusion of the “Muslim”.  The intangibility of that term uncovered by the enquiry of 1954 feeds a ceaseless desire to eradicate impurities.  This relentless purging, which has already cost the country its eastern half, will inevitably result in the deluded subject starving itself unto death unless its terrible affliction is lifted from it. This emaciated nation must free itself of its mental bonds.

Even if the “Muslim state” were abandoned, what would take its place?  One assumes a traditional, territorially defined country.  However, the state that Pakistan has sought to erect is not merely different from the traditional nation state but explicitly hostile towards it.  Muhammad Ali Jinnah, may have claimed that ‘Mussalmans are a nation according to any definition of a nation, and they must have their homelands, their territory, and their state’[26] but the country’s first prime minister Liaquat ali Khan said that ‘the principle of territorial nationalism is opposed to the Muslim view of nationalism which is based on a philosophy of society and outlook on life rather than allegiance to a piece of territory’[27].  The challenge to the nation state entertained by the opportunists who forged Pakistan is the natural position of jihadism.  Academics such as Olivier Roy have argued that “Islamists do not care about the state—they even downgraded Afghanistan by changing the official denomination from an ‘Islamic State’ to an ‘Emirate.’ Mollah Omar [did] not care to attend the council of ministers, nor to go to the capital … This new brand of supranational neo-fundamentalism is more a product of contemporary globalization than of the Islamic past.”[28] We find yet another confirmation that the “jihadi” is at home in the intellectual contradictions of the Pakistani state. For Muhammad Iqbal ‘the very idea of a homeland was idolatrous’[29].

The contradiction is best encapsulated in the word Pakistan.  On the one hand it is an acronym of the Muslim-majority areas of the subcontinent: P for Punjab, A for Afghanistan (or the frontier province), K for Kashmir and S for Sindh; on the other hand, pak also means pure.  These two ideas, territorial integrity and purity have come to define the country and their collision has made for its greatest travesties.  Pakistani foreign policy has become vicious and obsessive in the defense of its territorial integrity but this ferocity has been tested, frustrated and, in 1971, calamitously defeated by pathological distain for the impure or unislamic.

Noted journalist and author Ahmed Rashid once wrote that “the genius of early Muslim Arab civilization was its multicultural, multi-religious, and multiethnic diversity. The stunning and numerous state failures that abound in the Muslim world today are because that original path, that intention and inspiration, has been abandoned either in favor of a brute or a narrow interpretation of the theology.”[30] This essay has sought to portray the depth to which Pakistan has failed to meet the promise of the Muslim ideal.  The country was conceived on a flawed premise, which its founder repudiated.  It was a result of reckless populism, political accident and expediency.   It is this cruel and wasteful taste for agitation, which, at times, the US has cheerfully participated in, that created the country and has bedeviled it ever since. Even at this moment it motivates a flawed strategy of proxy use that also exploited the country’s most fundamental question of the role of religion.  It has been more than thirty years since Tariq Ali asked “Can Pakistan Survive?” (1983) and the country has muddled through.  Unless the military collapses, it will almost certainly muddle on indefinitely.  The real question becomes: in what way is Pakistan surviving? Survival alone is not enough.


Alex McGann is a 2nd-year English student at Exeter College, Oxford, and an associate editor of the OLR.




[2] Ramachandra Guha, India after Gandhi, (PAN books, 2007) p. 29


[4] Tariq Ali, The Duel: Pakistan on the Flight Path of American Power (Pocket Books, London, 2008), p. 30

[5] Muhammad Ali Jinnah, Speech to Constituent Assembly, 11th August 1947

[6] Address by Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah at Lahore Session of Muslim League, March, 1940 (Islamabad: Directorate of Films and Publishing, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of Pakistan, Islamabad, 1983), pp. 5-23

[7] Sir Muhammad Iqbal’s 1930 Presidential Address to the 25th Session of the All-India Muslim League 
Allahabad, 29 December 1930, Speeches, Writings, and Statements of Iqbal, compiled and edited by Latif Ahmed Sherwani (Lahore: Iqbal Academy, 1977 [1944], 2nd ed., revised and enlarged), pp. 3-26.

[8] Jamiluddin Ahmad, Speeches and Writings of Mr Jinnah, Sheikh Muhammad Ashraf, Lahore, Volume 1, p.117 – 124

[9] Anatol Lieven, Pakistan: A Hard Country (Penguin Books, 2012), p. 55

[10] Sunil Khilnani, The Idea of India (Penguin Books, 2012), p. 163

[11] Anatol Lieven, Pakistan: A Hard Country (Penguin Books, 2012), p. 57

[12] for details of Jinnah’s unislamic habits consult the memoir of his former junior, M. C. Chagla, Roses in December: An Autobiography (1973, reprint Bombay: Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, 1994), chapter 5

[13] Anatol Lieven, Pakistan: A Hard Country (Penguin Books, 2012), p. 62

[14] Tariq Ali, The Duel: Pakistan on the Flight Path of American Power (Pocket Books, London, 2008), p. 30

[15] Anatol Lieven, Pakistan: A Hard Country (Penguin Books, 2012), p. 60

[16] There is considerable controversy concerning the number of causalities in the war.  Higher estimates, at times deployed by the Indian and Bangladeshi governments, stretch to millions.  A recent study by Oxford University’s Sarmila Bose indicates however that as few as 50,000 died.  See Sarmila Bose, Dead reckoning: Memories of the 1971 Bangladesh War (Hurst C & Co Publishers Ltd, 2011).

[17] Anatol Lieven, Pakistan: A Hard Country (Penguin Books, 2012), p. 61

[18] Tariq Ali, The Duel: Pakistan on the Flight Path of American Power (Pocket Books, London, 2008), p. 48

[19] Sunil Khilnani, The Idea of India (Penguin Books, 2012), p. 164

[20] there has been some suggestion that the Afghan Taliban’s reliance on Pakistani military aid will motivate them to severe ties with their Pakistani counterparts but on the personal/tribal level which the more loosely-organised Pakistani Taliban operates, I see no prospect of this having any effect.

[21] Ahmed Rashid, “On a Credible U.S. Strategy in Afghanistan,” The Washington Post, September 23, 2009

[22] Vikram Jagadish, “Reconsidering American strategy in South Asia: Destroying Terrorist Sanctuaries in Pakistan’s Tribal Areas,” Small Wars & Insurgencies 20 (2009): 37

[23] Peter Naumann, Suspects into Collaborators (London Review of Books, Volume 36 number 7, 3rd April 2014)

[24] Ahmed Rashid, Pakistan on the Brink: The Future of Pakistan, Afghanistan and the West (Penguin Books, 2012), p. 47

[25] Peter Naumann, Suspects into Collaborators, London Review of Books, Volume 36 number 7, 3rd April 2014

[26] Address by Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah at Lahore Session of Muslim League, March, 1940 (Islamabad: Directorate of Films and Publishing, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of Pakistan, Islamabad, 1983), pp. 5-23

[27] Roger D. Long (ed.), ‘Dear Mr Jinnah’: selected correspondence and speeches of Liaquat ali Khan, 1937 – 1947(Karachi, Oxford University Press, 2004) p. 237

[28] Olivier Roy, The Changing Patterns of Radical Islamic Movements, CSNS Policy Paper 2 (New Delhi: Jawaharlal Nehru University, November 2002), p. 15

[29]Faisal Devji, Muslim Zion, p. 242

[30] Ahmed Rashid, Taliban: Islam, Oil and the New Great Game in Central Asia

(London and New York: I. B. Tauris, 2002), p. 212

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