South Asia Scholar Says Pakistan’s Police, Not Military, Is Key to Fighting Terrorism

From The Record:

AbbasHassan2009 Fourteen years ago, Hassan Abbas served on the police force in his homeland, Pakistan. Now from his perch at the School of International and Public Affairs, Abbas has come up with a plan to reform his country’s weak police system, which he argues would be far better than the military at fighting terrorism. “Nuclear bombs and attacks are not going to save Pakistan from militant threat,” says Abbas, the Quaid-i-Azam Professor with the South Asia Institute. “You need better law enforcement mechanisms to tackle the growing violence and crime in the country.” In February, Abbas’ research was published in a report released by the nonpartisan United States Institute of Peace. His recommendations include improving coordination between various policing agencies, streamlining the decision-making process, modernizing investigative skills and increasing police salaries.

Abbas’ research is timely as Pakistan becomes increasingly dangerous. Earlier this month, minority affairs minister Shahbaz Bhatti was gunned down in his car. Bhatti, a Roman Catholic, was the second government official to be assassinated in the past two months for seeking to reform Pakistan’s harsh blasphemy laws, which impose the death penalty for insulting the Prophet Muhammad. Salmaan Taseer, the Punjab governor, was murdered in January by one of his own bodyguards after he called for a pardon of a Christian woman sentenced to death under the law.

More here. (Note: This proposal is almost exactly similar to what our own 3qd editor Abbas Raza had sent as an aopen letter to President Musharraf more than five years ago)