It is a near truism that U.S. relations with Pakistan have been historically unstable, waxing and waning, climbing to heights of interdependence and sinking to mutual recrimination. Yet this is presently a period unmarked by either high promise or driven by crisis. Rather than a reason, however, for leaving the relationship untouched and unexamined, this can be a time of unusual opportunity to create a more deliberative approach to thinking about the bilateral relationship and for shaping fresh initiatives.
This policy paper represents the combined thinking of an expert group of independent academics, policy analysts, and retired government officials with many years as close witnesses to the U.S.-Pakistan relationship. Drawing on several discussion sessions and other communications, this paper examines the relationship and lays out a range of concrete proposals that take into account the interests of both countries. The issues and conclusions provided here are meant for U.S. policymakers as well as others with an interest in finding pathways for improved relations between the two countries.