Dr. Saira Yamin’s paper on “Pakistan: National Security Dilemmas and Transition to Democracy” was recently published by the Journal of Asia Security and International Affairs.  

The following is an abstract:

“Empirical evidence supports the notion that emergent and hybrid democratic regimes are often unstable and conflict-ridden. While these are important findings, the implication that instability is induced by democratic transitions provides a partial understanding of the dynamic. Pakistan’s recent return to a democratic system of government provides an opportunity to test this thesis and draw inferences about prospects for democratic consolidation. Using Pakistan as a case study, the research raises three important considerations towards a more comprehensive analysis of the dynamic of instability in democratic transitions. First, it emphasizes that a developing transitioning state is sometimes afflicted with protracted conflict conditions; hence the transition process per se may not have a direct or significant causal relationship with pervasive instability. Arguably, in the Pakistani context, conflict, chaos and instability are more a manifestation of pre-existing conflict conditions, more so than symptoms of democratization. Second, in considering the impact of the transition once it sets in motion, it appears to be an exacerbating dynamic, compounding the conditions of unabated conflict through social, political and economic tensions inherent in systemic change. In light of the above, a third consideration pertaining to the low capacity of transitioning systems to mitigate conflict is brought to the fore. This is significant as institutions are often weak and poorly equipped with conflict-resolution mechanisms and processes.”

You can read the full paper online at: http://aia.sagepub.com/content/current

Or APCSS alumni can read it on APCSSLink at:  https://www.apcsslink.org/system/files/Saira%20Yamin%20Article_0.pdf

Dr. Saira Yamin is an associate professor at the Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies. The views expressed in her paper are her own and not necessarily the views of APCSS, U.S. Pacific Command or the U.S. Government.