‘Operation Enduring Disaster’

‘Operation Enduring Disaster’ by Tariq Ali for TomDispatch, November 16, 2008

Afghanistan has been almost continuously at war for 30 years, longer than both World Wars and the American war in Vietnam combined. Each occupation of the country has mimicked its predecessor. A tiny interval between wars saw the imposition of a malignant social order, the Taliban, with the help of the Pakistani military and the late Benazir Bhutto, the prime minister who approved the Taliban takeover in Kabul.

Over the last two years, the U.S./NATO occupation of that country has run into serious military problems. Given a severe global economic crisis and the election of a new American president—a man separated in style, intellect, and temperament from his predecessor–the possibility of a serious discussion about an exit strategy from the Afghan disaster hovers on the horizon. The  …

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‘The American War Moves to Pakistan’

‘The American War Move to Pakistan’ by Tariq Ali for TomDispatch, September 16, 2008

The decision to make public a presidential order of last July authorizing American strikes inside Pakistan without seeking the approval of the Pakistani government ends a long debate within, and on the periphery of, the Bush administration. Senator Barack Obama, aware of this ongoing debate during his own long battle with Hillary Clinton, tried to outflank her by supporting a policy of U.S. strikes into Pakistan. Senator John McCain and Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin have now echoed this view and so it has become, by consensus, official U.S. policy.

Its effects on Pakistan could be catastrophic, creating a severe crisis within the army and in the country at large. The overwhelming majority of Pakistanis are opposed to the U.S. presence in the region,  …

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From the archive

  • ‘Pakistan: the Aftermath’

    December 31, 2007

    ‘Pakistan: the Aftermath’ by Tariq Ali for Counterpunch, December 31, 2007

    “Arranged marriages can be a messy business. Designed principally as a means of accumulating wealth, circumventing undesirable flirtations or transcending clandestine love affairs, they often don’t work. Where both parties are known to loathe each other, only a rash parent, desensitised by the thought of short-term gain, will continue with the process knowing full well that it will end in misery and possibly violence. That this is equally true in political life became clear in the recent attempt by Washington to tie Benazir Bhutto to Pervez Musharraf. The single, strong parent in this case was a desperate state department–with John Negroponte as the ghoulish go-between and Gordon Brown as the blushing bridesmaid—fearful that if it did not push this through both parties might soon be too old  …

  • Tariq Ali’s speech at the National Demonstration for Gaza on 8th August, London.

    August 13, 2014

    Here is a video of Tariq Ali’s speech at the largest UK demonstration for Gaza on 8th August, London.

  • ‘Com Dilma, EUA continuarão sem “policial” na América do Sul’: Tariq Ali speaks to Folha

    December 2, 2010

    Tariq Ali interviewed by Claudia Antunes for Folha, November 25 2010

    FOLHA – Os EUA se aproximam da Índia, cuja candidatura ao Conselho de Segurança da ONU apoiaram. A China, do seu lado, se aproxima do Paquistão. Isso afeta a guerra no Afeganistão? TARIQ ALI – Os EUA sabem que têm que se retirar do Afeganistão. Gostariam de sair, mas manter bases militares lá. Isso não vai ser possível. Os chineses, nos bastidores, disseram aos militares paquistaneses que não querem bases permanentes da Otan na sua fronteira. Para resolver esse problema, os EUA precisam dos militares paquistaneses.

    Simultaneamente, os EUA estão jogando a Índia contra a China. A Índia é o país mais importante para os EUA na Ásia. Sempre foi, mesmo quando a Índia tinha uma política externa de neutralidade. Mas hoje há uma elite indiana que se ajoelha  …

  • Tariq Ali’s speech at the National Demonstration for Gaza on 8th August, London.

    August 13, 2014

    Here is a video of Tariq Ali’s speech at the largest UK demonstration for Gaza on 8th August, London.

  • ‘Pakistan takes yet another step into the dark night’

    November 4, 2007

    ‘Pakistan takes yet another step into the dark night’ by Tariq Ali for The Independent, November 4, 2007

    For anyone marinated in the history of Pakistan yesterday’s decision by the military to impose a state of emergency comes as no surprise. Martial law in this country has become an antibiotic: in order to obtain the same results one has to keep doubling the doses. This was a coup within a coup.

    General Pervez Musharraf ruled the country with a civilian façade, but his power base was limited to the army. And it was the army Chief of Staff who declared the emergency, suspended the 1973 constitution, took all non-government TV channels off the air, jammed the mobile phone networks, surrounded the Supreme Court with paramilitary units, dismissed the Chief Justice, arrested the president of the bar association and  …