Author Biography

Syed Manzar Abbas Zaidi, LLM, LLB (Hon.), MBA, MBBS, is a Lecturer in Policing and Criminal Investigation at the University of Central Lancashire, UK. His areas of research expertise are the radical Islamist militancy in Pakistan, inter faith dialogue, and the deconstruction of the global communicative jihadist discourse. He is a senior associate editor of the Long War Journal, and has authored two books on the subject of the Taliban in Pakistan, besides having written extensively for numerous professional journals. The author may be reached for comment at: manzarj@hotmail.com.



Subject Area Keywords

Al-Qaida, Armed groups, Nonstate actors, Pakistan, Taliban, Violent extremism


Though Western analysts tend to mention al-Qaida and Taliban in Pakistan in the same context, the dynamics of their relationship are far more complex than a cursory examination would reveal. The context of this relationship is best understood within the overarching paradigm of militant activities of post 9/11 Taliban and al-Qaida remnants in Pakistan's tribal areas, where these groups flourish. The military struggle in Afghanistan has significantly influenced the formation of a loosely structured alQaida/Taliban "nexus" that was forged in Pakistan's Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), particularly Waziristan. In order to survive the ongoing North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) military operations to flush them out, these groups rapidly devised a symbiotic strategy that characterizes al-Qaida's ability to subsume itself within the ranks of different militant organizations in Pakistan.