Latest Articles about South Asia

Kashmir Initiative Likely to Spark More Violence

President Pervez Musharraf's surprise initiative, revealed on October 25, to solve the Kashmir dispute which has plagued relations with India for almost 60 years, has plunged political circles in Pakistan into turmoil. The initiative, broadly speaking, is an examination of a number of options to... MORE

The Roots of Extremism in Bangladesh

In many ways, Bangladesh seems an excellent place for al-Qaeda to find sanctuary in the decisive years ahead. It is an impoverished Islamic nation, politically weak and backward in its economic development. Its ports have been active hubs for transnational crime, including weapons running. [1]... MORE

Sipah-e-Sahaba: Fomenting Sectarian Violence in Pakistan

Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan (Corp of the Prophet's Companions), a militant Islamist organization and the largest sectarian outfit in the country, was outlawed by President Pervez Musharraf on January 12, 2002 for its alleged involvement in terrorist related activities. More than 1,500 of its members were arrested... MORE

Bangladesh Sitting on a Fundamentalist Volcano

A couple of events in January 2005, have once again highlighted the increasing political activity of radical Islamist parties in Bangladesh, and the precarious state of a country which threatens to become the next theatre for the War on Terrorism. The first was the assassination,... MORE

Sectarian Violence Rooted in Pakistan

On February 15, police in the Pakistani province of Balochistan arrested six suspected members of the outlawed militant Sunni group, Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan (SSP), for attacks against Shi'a Muslims in March of last year and in July 2003 that claimed 100 victims. The arrests were a... MORE

Lashkar-e-Toiba: New Threats Posed by an Old Organization

Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT – Army of the Pure) is the most well-organized and powerful Islamic militant organization in Pakistan. Designated a terrorist organization by the U.S. State Department and banned by the Pakistan government after the September 11 attacks, and notorious for its suicide attacks in... MORE

A New Deal For Pakistan? Musharraf’s Stark Choice

Today's Pakistan has a serious quandary. It is no longer faced with the choice between a secular, pluralistic state and an Islamic state. Rather, the decision is between two Islamic state models, one that is modern and democratic and one that is backward, intolerant, increasingly... MORE


On April 17 a new voice was added to the rather crowded airwaves in Afghanistan: Shariat Zhagh, the "Voice of Shariat." For those Afghans who had all but forgotten the Taliban, it was a disturbing and chilling surprise (VOA, April 22). Literally meaning the "Voice... MORE


There are increasingly strong indications that the United States and Afghanistan are considering a long-term U.S. military presence in Afghanistan. The hints have come from both sides. The latest discussion on the subject came when U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld visited Afghanistan last week. In... MORE


Attempts continue to persuade the Taliban to lay down its arms and join the peace process in Afghanistan. The negotiations, which occur at several levels and at various locations, are aimed at drawing in the so-called "moderate Taliban elements" and to create a rift in... MORE