Pakistan’s Drift into Extremism: Allah, the Army, and America’s War on Terror

If you have to read just one book on Pakistan, this is it. Extremely well written and powerful - I have been teaching South Asian history for a decade but haven't come across a book on the country that is so clear in its perspective, so bold and most importantly written by someone who is not only a scholar but one who witnessed the scene firsthand. Its certainly a important contribution to the field.

- Chris

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About the Book

This book examines the rise of religious extremism in Pakistan, particularly since 1947, and analyzes its connections to the Pakistani army’s corporate interests and U.S.-Pakistan relations. It includes profiles of leading Pakistani militant groups with details of their origins, development, and capabilities. The author begins with an historical overview of the introduction of Islam to the Indian sub-continent in 712 AD, and brings the story up to the present by describing President Musharraf’s handling of the war on terror. He provides a detailed account of the political developments in Pakistan since 1947 with a focus on the influence of religious and military forces. He also discusses regional politics, Pakistan’s attempt to gain nuclear power status, and U.S.-Pakistan relations, and offers predictions for Pakistan’s domestic and regional prospects.

Genres: Arms Control, Terrorism, Weapons & Warfare History
Tag: Recommended Books
Publisher: ‎ Routledge (August 31, 2004)
Publication Year: August 31, 2004
ASIN: 0765614979
ISBN: 9780765614971
The author’s style includes some subtle “sass” which adds a dynamic that makes it a more enjoyable read than your typical academic work.
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About the Author
Dr. Hassan Abbas

Dr. Hassan Abbas is Professor of International Security Studies & Chair of the Department of Regional and Analytical Studies at the National Defense University in Washington DC. He is also a senior advisor and Bernard Schwartz Fellow at the Asia Society in New York working on the U.S. relations with South and Central Asia. Dr. Abbas held the Distinguished Quaid-i-Azam Chair at the South Asia Institute at Columbia University from 2009-11. Previous to that he was a Senior Advisor at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, after having been a Research Fellow at the Belfer Center from 2005 to 2009. He is also a non-resident Fellow at the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding (ISPU), Michigan, and an Associate of the Pakistan Security Research Unit (PSRU), University of Bradford, in the United Kingdom. He received his Ph.D. from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University, and an LL.M. in International Law from Nottingham University, United Kingdom, where he was a Britannia Chevening Scholar (1999). Dr. Abbas also remained a fellow at the Islamic Legal Studies Program at Harvard Law School (2002-2003) and as a visiting scholar at the Harvard Law School's Program on Negotiation (2003-2004).

His research interests are politics and security issues in South West Asia; and relations between Muslims and the West. His recent publication include 'Stabilizing Pakistan Through Police Reforms' and 'Pakistan 2020: A Vision for Building a Better Future' both available at His book, Pakistan's Drift into Extremism: Allah, the Army and America's War on Terror (M.E. Sharpe) has been on bestseller lists in India and Pakistan and was widely reviewed internationally, including by the New York Times, the Boston Globe, Far Eastern Economic Review, The Hindu, and Dawn. He has also appeared as an analyst on CNN, MSNBC, C-Span, Al-Jazeera, and PBS, and as a political commentator on VOA and BBC. He runs WATANDOST, which is a blog on Pakistan and its neighbors' related affairs.

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