Global Politics

Pakistan's effect on Afghanistan

Celebrations continue in Pakistan today over the election of Pakistan's first civilian leader in a decade. The new leader comes from the Pakistan People's Party which controls the parliament that selects the president. The president-elect isn't highly regarded himself, but his appointment is considered an extension of the policies of Benazir Buttho, his slain wife. Tomorrow is the anniversary of the death of an Afghani leader killed by the Taliban just before the 9/11 attacks. Convoys of his loyal fighters raced around Kabul but his men have no feeling of solidarity for the government in Pakistan. Afghans have claimed Pakistan of supporting the Taliban in the past and the Afghan government has presented evidence that the Pakistani secret service has assisted with suicide bombings inside Afghanistan. Afghans and many Americans now believe that Pakistan has wasted a lot of the military aid sent to Pakistan to help combat terrorism, but they hope things will change with Pakistan's new president. But it's not clear either the army or intelligence service are under the president's control. the American military operation is growing less popular in both Afghanistan and Pakistan, especially as the U.S. continues to cross the border into tribal territories in Pakistan. If the new Pakistani president supports the U.S., he may quickly lose popularity. This analyst says the problems of terror in the tribal areas won't be resolved quickly with a new president-elect. He predicts additionally that internal pressures will keep the new president quite busy and make his job difficult.

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