Jan 28, 2018

Pakistan's general emerges as a decisive political leader


Gen. Qamar Javed Bajwa took over a year ago. Photo: Issam Ahmed / AFP via Getty Images

Gen. Qamar Javed Bajwa, who has led Pakistan's army since November 2016, has "greatly increased its clout," columnist Zahid Hussain told the New York Times.

Why it matters: "A little more than a year after he took command, there is already talk in the country of the 'Bajwa Doctrine,' with Pakistan’s approach to foreign and domestic policies reflecting the army chief’s vision," per the Times.

The backdrop: One of President Trump's first acts of 2018 was suspending nearly all security assistance to Pakistan, an amount that could be as high as $1.3 billion. And in a New Year's Day tweet, Trump accused the nation "lies and deceit" — an act which prompted an emergency security meeting in Pakistan.

"In a call this month with Gen. Joseph L. Votel, the head of the United States Central Command, for example, Bajwa talked of a 'sense of betrayal' within the country over Mr. Trump’s tweet," the Times reports.

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