Announcements :
• Dr. Muhammad Hanif Khalil has resumed the charge as Acting Director of the National Institute of Pakistan Studies, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad w.e.f. 25-09-2023
• The Institute has announced BS, M. Phil, and PhD admissions (Fall-2023)
National Institute of Pakistan Studies
Name of ScholarTabinda Siddiqui
Title of Dissertation Post-9/11 Militancy in Pakistan: A Geographical Perspective
Issue Date2020
PublisherNational Institute of Pakistan Studies, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad, Pakistan
Abstract Post-9/11 militancy emerged as a complex phenomenon with far-reaching implications for the state and society of Pakistan. As the years passed and the War on Terror evolved, terrorism overwhelmed the Pakistani state and society, causing multiple debates over what caused extremism and terrorism in Pakistan. To understand and explain this campaign of terrorism various analytical tools had been employed by writers, scholars, political commentators, and even by the practitioners of statecraft, both nationally and internationally. But the dominant discourse remained focused on religious extremism as the source of this violence, never experienced by the Pakistani state, despite its various encounters with militancy and terrorism since its independence. Drawing upon classical geopolitical framework, this study argues that without understanding the geopolitics of the region since 1947 and without tracing the history of militancy and terrorism inside Pakistan, post-9/11 militancy cannot be fully understood and adequately explained. Hence, drawing upon critical theory, this study problematized the dominant discourse of religious militancy in Pakistan. While tracing the history and geography of the region and in the light of findings of this research, concluded by the application of de-constructivist approach of critical theory, the present study argued that regional power politics played a more dominant role than religion as the underlying cause of the post-9/11 militancy in Pakistan. In sum, the study deconstructs the dominant discourse of ‘religious’ militancy in Pakistan and postulates an integrated geopolitical framework to broaden the understanding of post-9/11 militancy in Pakistan attributed to religious extremism. Drawing upon the history and geography of the region, comprising India, Pakistan, and Afghanistan, this study argues that in the highly contested and volatile region of South Asia, there are geopolitical contestations that have influenced the course of events related to militancy and terrorism more prominent than religion, as predominantly underlined.