Tribal Pakistan


FRONTLINE/World’s most recent video dispatches and eyewitness reports from the region.


imagePakistan: "We Routed the Men With Beards"
One week after elections in Pakistan, many voters are still ecstatic. "Pakistanis have told the world that we are not extremists and we don't want Islamic fundamentalists in power," one young voter told reporter Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy. But what comes next for the incoming government jockeying for power and looking for ways to force Musharraf to step down?

image"Welcome to Democracy, Pakistan-Style"
On the eve of presidential elections in Pakistan, FRONTLINE/World's Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy visits the neighborhoods around her home city of Karachi where she reports that ballot-rigging, coercion and intimidation are taking place.

image Pakistan: Blackout
In this video dispatch, David Montero reports on the crackdown on Pakistan's independent media since the state of emergency was declared in November 2007, and talks with an outspoken news editor and critic of President Musharraf whose popular current affairs program was pulled off the air.

imagePakistan: Burn, Baby, Burn
Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy reports from a chaotic and still-burning Karachi following the murder of opposition leader Benazir Bhutto.

imageThe Aftermath
In the wake of Benazir Bhutto’s assassination, Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy reports on the political turmoil caused by her death and what sort of legacy she will have among the Pakistani people. Also, U.C. Berkeley journalism student, Manal Ahmad, who was in Lahore for a family wedding when Bhutto was killed, describes the shock and confusion that followed the news.

imagePakistan: The New Taliban
FRONTLINE/World reports on the rise of fundamentalist political forces challenging President Musharraf's government.

imageInterview With Aitzaz Ahsan, Chief Justice Chaudhry's lawyer
In the fall of 2007, FRONTLINE/World’s David Montero sat down with Aitzaz Ahsan, Chief Justice Chaudhry's lawyer and leader of the movement to oust President Musharraf after he dismissed the chief justice and other members of Pakistan’s Supreme Court. Since the interview, Ahsan has been arrested, briefly released, and then rearrested last November. He is presently under house arrest in Lahore.


David Montero's reporting from Pakistan is a joint project of FRONTLINE/World and The Christian Science Monitor. Below are links to some of his recent stories in the paper.

imagePakistani Militant Attacks Persist, Test New Leaders
In this February 26 report in the Christian Science Monitor, David Montero reports that key Taliban figures in Pakistan's tribal belt remain at large despite the fact President Musharraf sent in 20,000 troops late last year. The army took back control of the capital of Swat last November, reports Montero, but Maulana Fazlullah escaped capture and continues to launch attack on nearby towns.

imageWill Iraq Playbook Work in Pakistan?
David Montero reports from Pakistan on how pitting Sunni tribes against Al Qaeda-allied tribes has worked in Iraq but asks whether it will work against the Taliban in Pakistan.

imagePakistan: Push For Polls Despite Suicide Bombing
Following a suicide bomb attack in Lahore, the first since Bhutto's assassination, David Montero reports for the Monitor on fresh worries about security for the February 18th elections.

imageBhutto's Death Helps Further Al Qaeda's Pakistan Agenda
In further coverage from Pakistan, David Montero reports that a string of attacks on many of the country's prominent figures indicates a potent new strand of militancy in Pakistan.


imageThe "Other" Bhutto
In this video interview with Benazir Bhutto's niece Fatima Bhutto, Fatima blames her aunt for the 1996 murder of her father. Educated in the U.S. and fast becoming a prominent figure in her own right, the 25-year-old could turn out to be a serious political player in the coming years.

imagePakistan: "The Liberal Dictator"
Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy talks with activists gathered in an upscale neighborhood of Karachi about Pakistan's political future.

imagePakistan: Disappeared
David Montero reports on how a campaign by a Pakistani housewife to find her missing husband sparked national protests that challenged Pakistan's feared intelligence agency, the ISI.

imagePakistan: On A Razor’s Edge
In this FRONTLINE/World broadcast story from 2004, Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy investigates the clashes between President Musharraf and the increasingly powerful Islamic fundamentalists who oppose him.

imageReturn of the Taliban
FRONTLINE correspondent Martin Smith returns to the Afghanistan-Pakistan border to present a rare look inside this secret sanctuary, a region long suspected of harboring Osama bin Laden and strictly off-limits to U.S. troops.

imagePakistan: Cold Comfort
FRONTLINE/World reports from the town of Balakot, the epicenter of the devastating 2005 earthquake. In the makeshift hospitals and Islamic relief camps, and amid the already heated politics of the region, reporter Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy finds a mix of medicine and religious ideology being dispensed.