(April 8, 2022)
Pakistan’s military has outsized power for a country conceived as a democracy. There have been three successful military coups. When Khan became prime minister, it was only the second time since Pakistan achieved independence in 1947 that a civilian administration had transferred power to another. Even when elected governments have ruled, the military, especially the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) agency, has played a forceful role.
Khan, who has been critical of the U.S. while seeking better relations with Russia and China, has said he would continue to pursue an “independent” foreign policy. His opponents have vowed to improve ties with the U.S. and Europe if they win.