Warrior State Explores Pakistan's "Geostrategic Curse": Access Utah Wednesday

Mar 12, 2014

Why is Pakistan stuck in a seemingly constantly failing place? Scholar T.V. Paul speaks on Access Utah.

Seemingly from its birth, Pakistan has teetered on the brink of becoming a failed state. Today, it ranks near the bottom of the list in global competitiveness. Its economy is as dysfunctional as its political system is corrupt and Taliban forces occupy 30 percent of the country. It possesses more than one hundred nuclear weapons that could easily fall into terrorists' hands. Why, in an era when countries across the developing world are experiencing impressive economic growth and building democratic institutions, has Pakistan been such a conspicuous failure?

In his new book “The Warrior State: Pakistan in the Contemporary World,” international relations scholar T.V. Paul argues that the "geostrategic curse"--akin to the "resource curse" that plagues oil-rich autocracies--is at the root of Pakistan's unique inability to progress.

Since its founding in 1947, Pakistan has been at the center of major geopolitical struggles: the US-Soviet rivalry, the conflict with India, and most recently the post 9/11 wars. In an age of transnational terrorism and nuclear proliferation, understanding Pakistan's development, particularly the negative effects of foreign aid and geopolitical centrality, is more important than ever.

“The Warrior State” tackles what may be the world's most dangerous powder keg and uncovers the true causes of Pakistan's enormously consequential failure. T.V. Paul, James McGill Professor of International Relations at McGill University, Montreal, is a leading scholar of international security, regional security, and South Asia. He received both his undergraduate and his graduate degree (M.Phil) from universities in India and a PhD in political science from UCLA. Author or editor of 15 books, his 2009 book “The Tradition of Non-use of Nuclear Weapons” was selected for the Peace Prize Laureate Exhibition honoring President Barack Obama by the Nobel Peace Center, Oslo. He is the Founding Director of the McGill/University of Montreal Centre for International Peace and Security Studies. T.V. Paul will speak at events in Salt Lake City and Logan, March 17-19.

March 17: University of Utah, Asian Studies

March 18: Westminster College

March 19: Utah State University (see below)

Credit Utah State University / Dept. of Political Science