Now in paperback, from a writer with unrivalled access and knowledge, a riveting portrait of America’s closest ally in the war on terror as it spirals into political chaos.The sixth most populous country in the world, Pakistan is the only Islamic state to have nuclear weapons. Its border with Afghanistan extends over 1,000 miles and is the likely hideout of Osama bin Laden. Yet it is the linchpin in the United States’ war on terror, receiving over $10 billion of American aid since 2001 and purchasing more than $5 billion of U.S. weaponry in 2006 alone.
With unilateral incursions into Pakistan by U.S. troops pursuing Taliban fighters, and surveys indicating that more than seventy percent of Pakistanis fear America as a military threat, relations between the two countries remain tense. The scion of a famous Punjabi political family, with extraordinary contacts inside the country and internationally, Tariq Ali has long been acknowledged as a leading commentator on Pakistan. In The Duel, he combines deep understanding of the country’s history with extensive firsthand research and unsparing political judgment to weigh the prospects of those contending for power today.