The Five Families of Peshawar

I swear I didn’t do it! That’s the news from Islamabad:

Apprehensive about potential reprisals by India over the Mumbai terrorist attacks, the Pakistani government insisted Saturday that it had not been involved. It pledged to take action against Pakistan-based militants if they were found to be implicated.


Islamabad doesn’t seem to rule much outside of, well, the city limits these days. Big swaths of Pakistan’s northwest have never been under control of the central government. So was the Pakistani government involved in the Mumbai attack? That’s a lot like asking if “the mob” was involved in some particular crime — which mob did you mean? The Corleones or the Barzinis? Because the Pakistani government functions, to the extent that it functions, a lot like that.


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