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"May you live in interesting times"
Posted by: McQ on Tuesday, October 07, 2008

The old Chinese saying certainly describes the situation in the world today, doesn't it?

The financial crisis, of course, has reached global proportions. And a very necessary ally, and very shaky democracy, is in trouble:
Pakistan's foreign exchange reserves are so low that the country can only afford one month of imports and faces possible bankruptcy.

Officially, the central bank holds $8.14 billion (£4.65 billion) of foreign currency, but if forward liabilities are included, the real reserves may be only $3 billion - enough to buy about 30 days of imports like oil and food.

Nine months ago, Pakistan had $16 bn in the coffers.

The government is engulfed by crises left behind by Pervez Musharraf, the military ruler who resigned the presidency in August. High oil prices have combined with endemic corruption and mismanagement to inflict huge damage on the economy.
The price-tag to rescue them? About 100 billion.

As mentioned, Pakistan is a critical ally in the war against the Taliban and al Qaeda in Afghanistan. It is also has nuclear weapons and a rather large population of radical Islamists who would love nothing better than to get their hands on them.

So, anyone, what does the US do?

Sounds like a great question for tonight's debate.
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Previous Comments to this Post 

So, anyone, what does the US do?
The $100B is Pakistan’s request for bid. I think we could get India to take care of the "nuts with nukes" problem for less than $100B.
Written By: Arcs
URL: http://
Because that’s worked out so well in the past?

Written By: Bithead
even 10 Billion would buy a fair amount of tactical nukes :)
Written By: capt joe
URL: http://
$10b would probably buy all of them...
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
$10b would probably buy all of them...
plus shipping and handling (lots of handling, nowhutimeen?)...
Written By: CR
URL: http://
$10b would probably buy all of them..
Give Pakistan a Hallmark moment?
Written By: capt joe
URL: http://
what do we do? did we run out of ink or that special paper? of course not, get those printing presses rolling again, our great grand-kids won’t mind!
Written By: pedro the illegal alien
URL: http://
So, anyone, what does the US do?

Need US troops in Pakistan. In numbers. Yesterday.
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