Columnist

Zahid Hussain

Zahid Hussain is an award-winning journalist and author. He is a former scholar at Woodrow Wilson International Centre for Scholar, USA, and a visiting fellow at Wolfson College, University of Cambridge, and at the Stimson Center in Washington DC. He is author of Frontline Pakistan: The struggle with militant Islam (Columbia university press) and The Scorpion’s tail: The relentless rise of Islamic militants in Pakistan (Simon and Schuster, NY). Frontline Pakistan was the book of the year (2007) by the WSJ.

Twitter: @hidhussain ‏

Latest published



Pakistan will pay a high price for appeasing violent extremists

The attempt on the life of Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal is a grim reminder of how the growing menace of religious extremism threatens Pakistan’s fragile democratic political process.

May 10, 2018

Media freedom under pressure in Pakistan as elections loom

What is described as a creeping expansion of the activities of the security agencies, which is being manifested in an unannounced gagging of the media and a curb on freedom of expression, has raised questions about the fairness of the coming general elections. 

May 03, 2018

The general’s ‘doctrine’

Pakistan’s army chief is indubitably the most powerful figure in the country, so when he speaks on politics it ought to create a stir. In a rare interaction with a group of journalist this month, Gen. Qamar Bajwa enunciated his views on politics, the economy and foreign policy.

March 29, 2018

Senate election deals a blow to Sharif’s comeback hopes

An embattled Nawaz Sharif suffered a serious setback last week in his struggle for political revival when his party lost the critical election for the Senate chairman. The large margin of defeat is a clear indicator of how the dice has been loaded against the ruling party.

March 18, 2018

Fighting talk

A senior US official’s call for a “new relationship” between Washington and Islamabad appears to have done little to heal the rift between the two countries over criticism of Pakistan’s counter-terrorism efforts.

March 01, 2018

Pakistan’s belated anti-terrorism crackdown is too little too late

For a long time, Pakistan has turned a blind eye to the activities of religious charities that are on the UN list of terrorist groups.

February 19, 2018

Major political crisis is brewing in Pakistan

Just as his trial on graft charges comes to a close, the tenor of ousted Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has become even more strident. His relentless attacks on the two most powerful institutions of state — the judiciary and the military — have intensified clashes between them.

February 07, 2018

A year Pakistan would rather forget

It has not been the best of times for Pakistan as it lurched from one crisis to another in 2017, and it faces an uncertain political future.

December 24, 2017

Bad marriage but no breakup

There is no indication yet of any improvement in troubled US-Pakistani relations, despite high-level engagement in the past months. Like in the past, the carrot-and-stick policy being pursued by the Trump administration has failed to break the ice.

December 04, 2017