Second in a two-part series. Click here to read Part I on the scope of the terrorist threat. LONDON — Simmering concern over the abuse of Britain’s post-9/11 anti-terrorist legislation turned to public outrage last month, when nine anti-terrorist officers used their expanded powers to raid the home, parliamentary office and constituency headquarters of senior opposition Conservative legislator, Damian Green. Green was arrested and questioned for nine hours on suspicion of “aiding and abetting, counseling or procuring misconduct in a public office.” It is an offense that carries a life sentence and that, if rigorously applied, would consign many journalists […]

First in a two-part series. Part two will appear next Wednesday. LONDON — In the aftermath of the Mumbai slaughter, Britain has increased pressure on Pakistan to deal decisively with the radicalization of young Muslims in its Saudi-funded madrassas and in the al-Qaida training camps that flourish in the lawless tribal areas along its porous border with Afghanistan. Britain has cause for concern. On a visit to Islamabad this month, Prime Minister Gordon Brown revealed that more than 20 serious terrorist plots against Britain — about three-quarters of the active plots currently monitored by Britain’s MI5 intelligence service — are […]

First of a three-part series. COLOMBO, Sri Lanka — In the silent, low-res imagery of the closed-circuit video footage that rapidly spread across YouTube, the young Tamil woman appears unafraid, even poised. Wrapped in a crisp sari, hair in a tight bun, she waits across the desk from the political secretary of a Sri Lankan minister. But something, almost imperceptible in the footage, goes wrong. So as a dozen people go about their business behind her, the woman rises from her chair, tugs at her bra and explodes, her torso vaporized in a C4 blast that kills her and the […]

Unlike his week-long trip to South America in late November, peripatetic Russian President Dmitry Medvedev’s recent two-day visit to India attracted little notice in Washington — and for good reason. The Russian and Indian governments did sign important agreements, but none that marked any fundamental transformation in their bilateral relations, or that directed it in ways that threaten American security interests. If anything, the trip highlighted the fact that countering terrorism in South Asia is a shared goal of Russian, American, and regional officials, thereby raising the possibility of enhanced Russian-American security cooperation in this important area. This was Medvedev’s […]

The commando-style terror attack in Mumbai, India, that claimed nearly 200 lives in late November highlights the ongoing danger Islamic extremists pose to even the most developed democracy in South Asia. The attack — and the diplomatic maneuvering in its wake — also casts light on the increasingly important network of relationships between India, Pakistan, Afghanistan and the United States. These four countries — three of them nuclear states — will likely decide the future of South Asia in an era of terrorism, coalition warfare and national rapprochement. The U.S.-led “war on terror,” which has seen scores of nations deploy […]

In the aftermath of the Mumbai attacks, attention has increasingly focused on Pakistan and the troubling, if opaque, links between its military intelligence apparatus and Islamic terrorist groups. But despite the very real risk of a widening of the regional war already underway in Afghanistan, the problems emanating from Pakistani soil defy military solutions. In a WPR Spotlight, we examine The Pakistan Problem. In Four Countries’ Relations Will Decide Region’s Future, David Axe examines the complicated dynamics at play between Pakistan, its two neighbors, India and Afghanistan, and the United States. In Advisers’ Views Provide Clues to Obama Approach Seth […]

Ten years ago, Bruce Riedel sent a memo to his boss, then-President Bill Clinton. In it, he called Pakistan the most dangerous country in the world. A ticking time bomb. Riedel’s reasons were many. Armed with nuclear weapons, Pakistan sponsored terrorists, was awash in drugs and consistently teetered on the verge of war with neighboring India, its nuclear rival. Later, he called it a “hothouse of terror.” Today, little has changed and Riedel, reportedly tapped as President-elect Barack Obama’s Pakistan adviser, continues to bristle at the problems the nation of 165 million people poses for the United States. “All of […]

AMSTERDAM, Netherlands — Concerns over terrorism rise at moments like this, when a massacre garners intense media attention, as did the attacks in Mumbai. But terrorist plots and efforts to stop them have become a common event in many parts of the world. And in Europe, where investigations, disrupted plots, and arrests have become a regular occurrence, many of the cases show disturbing links to the events in India. In the aftermath of the terror in Mumbai, tensions between India and Pakistan continue to grow, as Delhi points a finger at its neighbor and rival as the source of the […]

Last week’s attacks on the Indian city of Mumbai focused the world’s attention on what some are already calling the latest front in the War on Terror. Many questions remain as to the attackers’ origins as well as what, if any, ties they had to Pakistani terror groups previously operating in Kashmir, global terrorist networks like al-Qaida and the Pakistani military intelligence service. Two WPR articles put the attacks in their regional context:Mumbai Attacks Complicate U.S. Regional Policy, by M.K. BhadrakumarMumbai Attacks Put Scrutiny on ISI, by Jayshree Bajoria.