When President Asif Ali Zardari’s phone rang at 1.15 a.m. on Monday, it was President Barack Obama on the line, with news that a U.S.
Although President Barack Obama on Wednesday pledged unwavering backing for Pakistan’s government in its battle with extremists, his Administration has recognized the potentially crippling political weakness of President Asif Ali Zardari.
Pity the Obama Administration, having to behave as if Pakistan’s President Asif Ali Zardari and Afghanistan’s President Hamid Karzai were reliable stewards of U.S. security interests in the world’s most troubling trouble-spot
President Obama’s ambitious strategy for Afghanistan and neighboring Pakistan, dubbed "Afpak" by administration officials, will face its first test Wednesday when he meets with the leaders of both countries — neither of which is seen as able to maintain stability and fight strengthening Islamic insurgencies.
Even by Pakistan’s standards, where violence has routinely scarred the landscape, the scenes were startling. For several hours on Sunday, the heart of this eastern city was witness to street battles as baton-wielding police mounted a fierce but ultimately failed attempt to crush a gathering of anti-government lawyers and political activists. As the country’s enduring political confrontation entered its decisive phase, President Asif Ali Zardari pressed on with his crackdown on opposition groups in a bid to thwart a “long march” for the reinstatement of deposed Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry
Despite a flurry of efforts to broker a truce, Pakistan’s government and leading opposition politicians continue to stagger toward a head-on collision. As Washington and its allies watch with mounting anxiety, the government has broadened its crackdown, requisitioning troops and silencing a leading TV news channel
The presidents of Pakistan and neighboring Iran and Afghanistan have agreed that their foreign ministers will hold monthly meetings to discuss regional issues, according to a spokesman for Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari.