Reversing Pakistan's Drift Toward Radicalism
The assassination earlier this year of the governor of Punjab is representative of Pakistan’s drift towards Islamic orthodoxy and radicalism. Radicalism has permeated society at large – including government institutions – and now represents the dominant worldview in the country. Pakistan’s Islamic groups include a wide range of entities, from right-of-center political parties to conservative Islamic clergy and militant groups. The social and educational changes advanced by the government of General Zia ul-Haq in the 1980s has severe implications for Pakistan’s domestic security and external relations today, and can only be reversed through a similar generational process involving educational reform, socio-economic development, and regional peace initiatives.