Understanding Pakistan Beyond the "War on Terror"

Sadia Mahmood

Sadia Mahmood, Ph.D. and Fulbright scholar-in-residence at Champlain College, will discuss how, in the absence of any mainstream narrative and in the face of internal political divides, Pakistan has fought one of the most vital wars of its history. 

Her talk, "Understanding Pakistan Beyond the ‘War on Terror,'" will be held Monday, Feb. 26 at 7 p.m. in the Presentation Room at Champlain College's Roger H. Perry Hall and Welcome Center, 251 South Willard St. in Burlington.

Mahmood will examine how Pakistan launched Operation Zarb-e-Azb in 2014 as a decisive military operation against militant groups in the country's northwestern regions. The goal of this military operation was to rid the country of devastating terrorist attacks. Pro- al-Qaeda groups in Pakistan had successfully been propagating a strong religious narrative, a narrative derived from the holy texts of Islam, to establish the legitimacy of their actions. They divided public opinion by invoking "justice" and an "ideal Islamic polity," weakening the authority of the Pakistani state. It took the Pakistani state an exceptionally long time to achieve a comprehensive consensus and to declare this all-out military operation against the militant groups.


Founded in 1878, Champlain College is a small, not-for-profit, private college in Burlington, Vermont, with additional campuses in Montreal, Canada, and Dublin, Ireland. Champlain offers a traditional undergraduate experience from its beautiful campus overlooking Lake Champlain and over 90 residential undergraduate and online undergraduate and graduate degree programs and certificates. Champlain's distinctive career-driven approach to higher education embodies the notion that true learning occurs when information and experience come together to create knowledge. Champlain College is included in the Princeton Review's The Best 382 Colleges: 2018 Edition. For the third year in a row, Champlain was named a "Most Innovative School" in the North by U.S. News & World Report's 2018 "America's Best Colleges," and an "A+ School for B Students" and is ranked in the top 100 Regional Universities of the North. Champlain is also featured in the Fiske Guide to Colleges for 2018 as one of the "best and most interesting schools" in the United States, Canada and Great Britain and is a 2018 College of Distinction. For more information, visit  www.champlain.edu.