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pakistan: the seedbed of jihad

Confronting the Pakistan Problem
In this Web-exclusive interview with FRONTLINE, Christine Fair lays out the complexities of Pakistan's internal and geopolitical situation and what it means for U.S. policy. Fair is a specialist in South Asian political and military affairs at the Center for Conflict Analysis and Prevention at the United States Institute for Peace.

The Plots
Here is a rundown of Islamic extremists and terrorist plots with links to Pakistan.

Musharraf's Predicament
His hold over Pakistan is tenuous. He's survived assassination attempts; his government has had to make deals -- widely viewed as concessions -- with militants in the uncontrolled tribal areas; he faces a nationalist insurgency in the province of Baluchistan; and he's been accused of playing a "double game" by some U.S. and Afghan officials. What's his strategy and what kind of ally is he for the United States? Here are the views of FRONTLINE's experts.

The Debate Over U.S. Policy
What can the United States do about the sanctuary and support that the Taliban and Al Qaeda have in Pakistan's tribal areas? Washington increasingly recognizes that inaction will jeopardize its goals for Afghanistan. But the debate has only just begun over a new policy -- and the price for that policy the United States is prepared to pay. Here is a taste of that debate.

Cutting Deals with the Taliban
In September 2006, Pakistan's military negotiated a cease-fire with militants in the tribal region of North Waziristan. It wasn't the first time: In 2004, President Musharraf ordered the army to cut a deal with Taliban militants led by 27-year-old commander Nek Mohammed. It quickly fell apart. Here are perspectives on why Pakistan has tried to negotiate with the militants, and whether this can ever work.

The Taliban-Pakistan Alliance
An examination of how the Taliban took power in the 1990s with the help of Pakistan and whether, today, Pakistan's army and intelligence service are ready to fight their old ally.

Can Afghanistan Be Saved?
The Taliban's comeback is clear. Its 2006 spring-summer offensive produced the most intense attacks in Afghanistan since the Taliban was overthrown five years ago. Here, experts discuss the complexities of the situation and why U.S.-led efforts in Afghanistan are doomed unless the Taliban's sanctuary and support in Pakistan is ended.

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posted oct. 3, 2006

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