November 1, 2007  

To House Armed Services Committee chairman Ike Skelton, D-Mo.

For holding a hearing on the too-long-overlooked security threat posed by Pakistan.

Internal instability in Pakistan, a country believed to have enough fissile material for 55 to 90 nuclear weapons and long-range missiles, has risen steeply this year. Yet for all the danger signs, “it is clear that U.S. policies have neither neutralized anti-Western militants and reduced religious extremism in Pakistan, nor sufficiently contributed to the stabilization of Afghanistan,” Skelton said.

Islamic extremists are determined to exploit the political turmoil that will determine Pakistan’s ultimate direction. The Washington-Islamabad relationship through this transition requires deft diplomacy. Skelton has turned the lens toward where U.S. government attention must sharply focus.