Pakistan, Russia Begin Joint Anti-Terror Military Drills
As the US seeks to change Pakistani behavior concerning political behaviors and terrorism through various coercive methods, Russia is threatening to step in and fill the gap. The two countries have begun their third annual joint military drills that started in 2016, and the US’s discontinuation of military exchange programs has provided further opportunity for Russia develop closer military relationships with the country. This progress threatens to remove the impact of US efforts to force Pakistan to tackle serious problems in its politics and counterterrorism programs. It also puts US policymakers in the difficult decision of having to choose between supporting a government in exchange for little leverage and allowing it to become closer with Russia.