Shuja Nawaz

  • Looking Ahead to South Asia in 2014

    In the coming year, the greater South Asia region will be under enormous pressure. The 2013 elections in Iran and Pakistan ushered in new administrations that are now expected to deliver, particularly on the economic front.  Meanwhile, Afghanistan, India, and Bangladesh face their own elections in 2014.  In the midst of the ongoing transitions, the South Asia Center invited experts to share their predictions for the region in the coming year as well as offer advice on how to move relations forward between South Asian countries, and the US and greater South Asia.

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  • What Will a New Army Chief Mean for Pakistan and the Neighborhood?

    Since it was announced last month that Pakistan’s army chief, Gen. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, would be retiring, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has kept the country dangling on his choice, creating a new parlor game for the chattering classes in the process. General Kayani has been characteristically mum, except for an unusual press release that said he was leaving the office on November 29, without closing out other options, even as he accepted the concurrent role of chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
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  • Addressing India's Cyber Threats

    India is quickly becoming the second-largest victim of cyberattacks after the United States and earlier this year released its first national Cyber Security Policy, which aims to ensure a secure and resilient cyberspace for citizens, businesses, and the government. Ambassador Latha Reddy, former deputy National Security Advisor of India, emphasized that the intent of India's Cybersecurity Policy is to strengthen the role of its Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In) in coordination with crisis management efforts and awareness-raising activities on cybersecurity during an event kicked off with an introduction by South Asia Center Director Shuja Nawaz and moderated by Cyber Statecraft Initiative Director Jason Healey. Alongside protecting the country's cyber infrastructure, the policy strengthens the significant role IT has played in transforming India's image to that of a global player in providing IT solutions of the highest standards.

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  • A New Honeymoon for the United States and Pakistan?

    A relationship that has been described as a rollercoaster ride or tagged as a deal between "frenemies" appears to have been rejuvenated with a fresh infusion of bonhomie. Some might describe it similar to the Liz Taylor-Richard Burton marriages: shouting and screaming matches followed by a quiet make-up. Is there another honeymoon in the making now between the United States and Pakistan?
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  • Nawaz on the State of US-Pakistani Relations

    Shuja Nawaz, director of the South Asia Center, joins CCTV America to discuss the state of US-Pakistani relations following Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's visit to the United States:

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  • Advice on Doing Business with Pakistan

    Dear Mr. President,

    Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is meeting with you on Wednesday with high expectations. He is a pragmatic business-oriented politician with a powerful electoral base who has shown magnanimity and deftness in allowing opposition parties to form governments in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and Sindh provinces, and he backed the election of a nationalist Baloch as the chief minister in Baluchistan. While this could be seen as a policy of sharing the misery of trying to govern an ungovernable Pakistan, it could also be an attempt to work within a fractured political system. Regardless, he represents a chance to provide continuity for civilian governance in Pakistan and to build a relationship that goes beyond our immediate need to exit Afghanistan gracefully.

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  • Nawaz Sharif Comes to Washington

    When Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif lands in Washington this weekend, he would not be blamed if he is wracked by mixed feelings. His last visit to the US capital, in July 1999, occurred in the wake of the Kargil adventure with India that he allowed to get out of hand, and which led to a break with his army chief and his eventual ouster as prime minister. Due to the coup by Gen. Pervez Musharraf, Pakistan was in the political doghouse until the then-president became a US ally in the wake of the terrorist attack of 9/11 and the allied invasion of Afghanistan. For over a decade, Musharraf played the Afghanistan and terrorism cards to his advantage, while his own country slid into the depths of militancy and terrorism. Ironically, he never visited his own troops who were fighting and dying inside the border region. Neither did most of Pakistan's civilian leaders.
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  • A Necessary Transition in Pakistan

    In an historic moment this weekend, Pakistan's two-term army chief Gen. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani announced that he would retire at the end of November after six years at the helm. An official later stated that Kayani would not seek any other job after retirement, putting an end to speculation in Pakistan that Kayani may stay on in another perhaps more powerful role. This marks a necessary transition in the slow return to the supremacy of the elected civilian government over the military that has dominated decision making in Pakistan for the past thirteen plus years, when Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's first government was overthrown by a coup on behalf of Gen. Pervez Musharraf. But the road ahead for Pakistan's political evolution remains difficult, as stunted civilian institutions struggle to assert themselves in the face not only of lingering military power, but also a massive internal militancy and potentially hot borders on both Pakistan's East (with India) and West (with Afghanistan). While this is a start, a number of other transitions are needed for Pakistan to regain its stability. Kayani may be gone, but military influence in the country remains powerful. His successor as army chief would do well to keep it on a downward trajectory.
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  • Iran Task Force Chairman Meets with Iranian Foreign Minister

    The chairman of the Atlantic Council's Iran Task Force, Stuart Eizenstat, met with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif on October 2, 2013. Eizenstat, accompanied by Atlantic Council South Asia Center Director Shuja Nawaz and Senior Fellow Barbara Slavin, held a wide-ranging conversation with Zarif that touched on issues of concern between the United States and Iran and on the Task Force's efforts over the past two and a half years to find pragmatic solutions to these issues.
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  • John Kerry's Pakistan Deja Vu

    "Time is running out" to help nuclear-armed Pakistan's civilian government survive. That is what then-Senator John Kerry (D-MA) said in support of the recommendations of an Atlantic Council report that was released in February 2009. The report, which provided a comprehensive look at Western relations with Pakistan, estimated that, at that point, then-President Asif Ali Zardari's government had between 6 and 12 months to enact successful security and economic policies or face the prospect of collapse. "There is still time for us to be able to help the new civilian government, turn around its economy, stabilize the political system, and address the insurgency" festering in the eastern tribal lands on the Afghan border, said Kerry.

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