For Pakistan, the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) cancer has been poison. While the ISI is convinced it can control and channel the forces it shaped, tens of thousands of Pakistanis have already died for the intelligence agencys mistakes.
“For Iran’s own intelligence service, some Iranians tell me, the ISI has become a source of emulation,” writes Michael Rubin in National Interest.
While, in theory, the Pakistan Prime Minister appoints the ISI Director, in recent years the reality appears opposite: No civilian Prime Minister can serve without subordinating himself to the whims of the ISI.
In the years since Bangladeshi independence and the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, ISI dominance of Pakistan has grown. The US and NATO’s post-9/11 involvement in Afghanistan allowed the ISI to be the arsonist while it collected the firefighter’s salary, writes Michael Rubin in National Interest.
The Taliban’s victory in Afghanistan renewed focus on Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) agency. The ISI did not create the Taliban, but they co-opted them and, since 1994, have used them as a tool of Pakistani policy. Pakistan’s ISI chiefs have been unapologetic about their relations with the Taliban and their role in the movement’s victory over the US and its Afghan allies, Rubin wrote.
Iran is nearing an inflection point. Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei is 82-years-old; many of his revolutionary contemporaries have already passed away.