The Magazine

Our Pakistan Problem

Could its holy warriors be the most dangerous?

Dec 22, 2008, Vol. 14, No. 14 • By REUEL MARC GERECHT
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Still, Pakistan may follow the examples of Iraq, Egypt, and Algeria, where all the Islamist savagery finally undid the sympathy of large parts of the population for holy warriors. Jihadists inevitably become infatuated with killing, making their understanding of God's wrath just a bit too much to swallow, even for Muslims who loathe the West. Until that happens, though, we will have to strengthen our intelligence capacities and continue to act preemptively against terrorist plots, and to hope that the Pakistani military, a forceful, proud, and hierarchical institution, will itself act against men who don't recognize its authority--and who blow up women and children.

--Reuel Marc Gerecht, for the Editors