The Pakistan Cauldron


The Pakistan Cauldron

Conspiracy, Assassination & Instability

James P. Farwell
Foreword by Joseph D. Duffey

360 pages


October 2011


$29.95 Add to Cart
eBook (PDF)

November 2011


$29.95 Add to Cart

About the Book

The killing of Osama bin Laden spotlighted Pakistan’s unpredictable political dynamics, which are often driven by conspiracy theory, paranoia, and a sense of betrayal. In Pakistan, the late prime minister Benazir Bhutto famously declared, there is “always the story behind the story.” In The Pakistan Cauldron, James P. Farwell explains what makes Pakistani politics tick. Farwell has advised the Department of Defense on terrorism, sovereignty, and the political issues in the Middle East, Africa, and Pakistan. Here he reveals how key Pakistani political players have inconsistently employed the principles of strategic communication to advance their agendas and undercut their enemies. Pakistan is an enigma to many. Only by understanding the complex forces that shape Pakistani leaders can we uncover their shifting political agendas and how they affect America and the West. Farwell explains how and why former president Pervez Musharraf clamped down on nuclear scientist A. Q. Kahn and isolated him. He assesses Benazir Bhutto’s unique legacy and analyzes how Musharraf handled the aftermath of her assassination. He explains Pakistan’s current instability and demonstrates how the country’s emotional reaction to bin Laden’s death is best understood as the outcome of long-standing political dynamics. The Pakistan Cauldron is for anyone who needs to know why Pakistan continues to pose increasingly difficult challenges for the United States and the West.

Author Bio

James P. Farwell is an expert in strategic communication who has advised the Department of Defense, U.S. Special Operations Command, and the U.S. Strategic Command on the Middle East, Africa, and Pakistan. He has written commentaries for the International Institute for Strategic Studies, the Middle East Institute, the National Interest, IO Journal, and Defence IQ. A graduate of Tulane and the University of Cambridge, England, he is also an attorney and a political consultant who has worked nationally and internationally at the presidential level. He is a senior research scholar in strategic studies at the Munk School, Center for Global Security, University of Toronto.


"The military professional should read this book..."—Lester W. Grau, Military Review

"Many have written about Pakistan but no one before has talked about the critical impact of strategic communication on policy. ‘The Pakistan Cauldron’ is a must read for anyone who wants to understand the delicate relationship between Pakistan and the United States."—Mark A. Siegel, partner, Locke Lord Strategies, L.P.

“James Farwell has undertaken original research and considered evidence from a novel perspective to develop insights and explain issues in a refreshingly interesting way. His views and conclusions are not constrained by received wisdom or conventional thinking. The intellectual rigour and level-headed analysis with which he tackles this complex project is fascinating and has produced an informative book. One does not have to agree with all he writes to find this work engaging, stimulating and a valuable contribution to our understanding of the region, the important players, influences and resulting challenges. A recommended read. If you want to understand Pakistan, read this book.”—Col Stephen Padgett Obe, Commander British Forces Afghanistan and British Defence Attaché in Kabul 2005-2006

"James Farwell has produced a highly readable and balanced account of contemporary Pakistan's tortuous journey toward its current troubled status. I would recommend this book as a guide for any policymaker or commentator seeking a rapid understanding of Pakistan. All the basics, and much more, can be found here to unlock the Pakistani enigma."—Sir Richard Dearlove, former head of MI6

"An engrossing account of Pakistan's fractured history that exposes the faults and foibles of its leaders as they attempted to cling to or gain power. None has succeeded in giving the country the sustainable leadership it deserves. Pakistan remains, as a result, on the edge of a political precipice."—Shuja Nawaz, director of the Atlantic Council’s South Asia Center and author of Crossed Swords: Pakistan, Its Army, and the Wars Within

"James Farwell writes on Pakistan with indefatigable passion. He unravels the mysteries surrounding recent turmoil and upheaval in a country that simply refuses to give up despite the stark challenges it faces. For all those interested in the power of 'strategic communication' and how it influences politics and policy, The Pakistan Cauldron is a high-speed car chase through this newly recognized, yet ancient, political art."—Maajid Nawaz, founder and executive director, Quillium Foundation