Hassan Abbas

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Hassan Abbas

Expert

Tags: Religion

Areas of Expertise: Politics, Security and Religion in South Asia & Middle East, US Counterterrorism Policy, Law Enforcement and Police and Reforms in Developing States.

Disclaimer: the work linked below reflects the view of the author and does not necessarily reflect the view of ISPU.

Hassan Abbas is professor and chair of the Department of Regional and Analytical Studies at National Defense University’s College of International Security Affairs in Washington, DC. He is also a senior adviser at the Asia Society. Previously, he served as the distinguished Quaid i Azam chair professor at Columbia University and a senior adviser at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University. He holds a PhD. from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University, an LLM in International Law from the Nottingham University, UK and MA in Political Science from Punjab University, Pakistan. He regularly appears as an analyst on international media and writes pieces for various leading international newspapers and academic publications. His latest book, The Taliban Revival (Yale University Press, June 2014) chronicles the Taliban’s survival and resurgence after 2001, through firsthand research and interviews in the area.

Education

Ph.D Security Studies, Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, LLM International Law, University of Nottingham

Areas of Expertise

  1. Politics, Security and Religion in South Asia & Middle East
  2. US Counterterrorism Policy
  3. Law Enforcement and Police Reforms in Developing States

Publications

Other Works

This book is a collection of Imam Ali Ibne Abi Talib's policy statements on the role and responsibilities of political leadership for good governance. Important administrative policy initiatives taken by Imam Ali and his guidelines for effective government as advocated in his writings and lectures to various governors and senior officials are the primarily focus…
There's been a lot of chatter recently about "Out of Sight, Out of Mind," a new online infographic which shows a chilling visualization of all estimated deaths in Pakistan caused by U.S. drone strikes, including children and civilians, based on estimates from the Bureau of Investigative Journalism and New America Foundation. Whether you agree with…
Pakistan, India and Afghanistan are battling extremists at different levels and all three of them are 'destined' to play a role in the 'war on terror'   Naomi Klein, Canadian columnist and author of The Shock Doctrine insightfully says, "Terrorism doesn't just blow up buildings; it blasts every other issue off the political map. The…
Before Pakistan could start recovering from a suicide bombing at a U.N. office in Islamabad and a massive bomb blast in a Peshawar market last week, the brazen October 10 attack targeting Pakistan's most secure military complex -- Army Headquarters (GHQ) in Rawalpindi, just a few miles from the capital of Islamabad -- jolted it…
In recent years Pakistan has stumbled from one crisis to another. Reeling from a deadly insurgency on the country's western border, its democratic government has struggled to establish even a modicum of stability. The people of Pakistan have shown amazing resilience even as they face rising terrorist activity, severe economic distress and perennial regional tensions.…
The idea of defiance against tyranny and oppression owes a great deal to Hussain ibne Ali, the hero of the battle of Karbala in 680 AD. With just 72 valiant followers and family members, the grandson of Prophet Mohammad faced the military might of the Muslim empire ruled then by a despot, Yazid bin Mu‘awiya.…
The U.S.-Pakistani relationship has become defined by mutual dissatisfaction and by impatience on both sides. The November 26 NATO operation in Pakistan's northwestern tribal area, which led to the deaths of more than two dozen Pakistani soldiers, is a case in point. In a recent town hall meeting in Islamabad with U.S. Secretary of State…
It is generally believed in the West that military action can resolve the terrorism problem in the Pakistan-Afghanistan border region as well as help efforts to thwart violent radicalism throughout the region. This idea, while sounding sensible when peering at Pakistan from the outside, misses an important reality on the ground: according to a new…
Pervez Musharraf of Pakistan stands virtually alone today while facing the most serious challenge to his presidency: possible impeachment by the new democratically-elected government.   The potential charges are serious: conspiring to destabilise the government that was elected last February, unlawfully removing the country's top judges in November 2007, and failing to provide adequate security…
The draft metrics devised by the Obama administration to evaluate progress in the AfPak theater, while providing a useful list of issues to follow, analyze and gauge the developing situation in Afghanistan, leaves much to be desired in its treatment of the Pakistan side of things. The informed and constructive analysis of said metrics by Steve Coll and Katherine Tiedemann in this…
In recent years, Pakistan has stumbled from one crisis to another. A number of political and socioeconomic challenges threaten to further destabilize a country that already is reeling from insurgencies along its northwestern border. Pakistan’s newest democratic government is struggling to maintain control over parts of its territory where militant religious groups are intent on…
Is Pakistan collapsing? How far are the Taliban from Islamabad? Can al-Qaeda grab the country’s nuclear weapons? These are the types of questions raised every day by the American media, academia and policy circles. And these are critical issues, given the nature of the evolving crisis in Pakistan. The approximately two dozen suicide bombings in…
Pakistan's Drift into Extremism examines the rise of religious extremism in Pakistan and analyzes its connections to the Pakistani army's policies and fluctuating U.S.-Pakistani relations. It includes profiles of leading Pakistani jihadi groups with details of their origins, development, and capabilities based on interviews with Pakistani intelligence officials and militant leaders. In addition to a…
First demarcated in 1893 by British foreign secretary Sir Mortimer Durand, the northwest frontier was created when the Durand Line imposed an artificial border between the tribal Pashtun communities of modern Afghanistan and Pakistan. Today, the frontier has become a breeding ground for a growing Islamic militancy in Pakistan s tribal areas that threatens the…
It is a globally recognized fact that a state’s police and law enforcement agencies play a critical role as the first line of defense against the threats of terrorism and insurgencies. An informative RAND study titled How Terrorist Groups End provides evidence that effective police and intelligence work, rather than the use of military force,…
There is an emerging consensus among foreign policy experts that the growing insurgency and militancy in Pakistan’s Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) poses the greatest security challenge not only to Pakistan and Afghanistan, but also to the United States. Some scholars even project that a major terrorist act with al-Qaeda footprints in the United States…
Conventional wisdom suggests that international development helps defeat militancy, create stability, and promote U.S. security. Stability through development has emerged as a principle of U.S. policy in the fight against militancy in Pakistan’s Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA). The United States pledged $750 million of development aid to Pakistan between 2007 and 2011, and various…
Last month's terrorist assault in Mumbai targeted not only India's economy and sense of security. Its broader goal was to smash the India-Pakistan dètente that has been taking shape since 2004. The attackers did not hide their faces or blow themselves up with suicide jackets. Anonymity was not their goal. They wanted to be identified…
India and Pakistan must avoid confrontation and crush the extremists who seek to divide the region The terrorist assault in Mumbai targeted not only India's economy and sense of security. Its broader goal was to smash the India-Pakistan détente that has been taking shape since 2004. The attackers did not hide their faces or blow…
From The Asia Society: A report by the Asia Society Independent Commission on Pakistan Police Reform finds that Pakistan’s efforts to combat crime and counter terrorist activities are being outpaced by the innovation and agility of criminal networks and terrorist organizations. Without comprehensive reform of the legal framework governing police action, the police force as…
As its army confronts, ever more bloodily, the Taliban in the Swat Valley, Pakistan is fighting for its very soul. The army appears to be winning this time around, in marked contrast to its recent half-hearted confrontations with Taliban forces in neighboring tribal areas.   For now, the Taliban are on the run, some with…
The death of Osama bin Laden on May 2 in Abbottabad, Pakistan is undoubtedly a major setback for al-Qaeda and a significant achievement for the United States and its allies. In recent days, al-Qaeda purportedly has released several statements, including a lengthy two-part video, but its message since bin Laden's killing remains confused. While the…
In his authoritative and highly readable account, author Hassan Abbas examines how the Taliban not only survived but adapted to their situation in order to regain power and political advantage. Abbas traces the roots of religious extremism in the area and analyzes the Taliban’s support base within Pakistan’s Federally Administered Tribal Areas. In addition, he…
There is an emerging trend among international counter insurgency (COIN) experts to claim that Afghanistan was a ‘mission impossible’ in terms of national building endeavors. Others contend that after a planned US withdrawal in 2014 (which will likely trigger a quick EU/NATO exit) a devastating civil war will be the fate of Afghanistan, leading to…
Pakistan is only months away from a first: a democratically elected government is slated to hand over power to another democratically elected government. Too bad few in Pakistan are in a celebratory mood. The lack of excitement is due, in part, to a worsening economic situation and rampant corruption. Today, Pakistan’s Supreme Court ordered the…