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May 01

Vying for Allah’s Vote: Understanding Islamic Parties, Political Violence, and Extremism in Pakistan

In this book, Haroon K. Ullah analyzes the origins, ideologies, bases of support, and electoral successes of the largest and most influential Islamic parties in Pakistan. Based on his extensive field work in Pakistan, he develops a new typology for understanding and comparing the discourses put forth by these parties in order to assess what drives them and what separates the moderate from the extreme. A better understanding of the range of parties is critical for knowing how the United States and other Western nations can engage states where Islamic political parties hold both political and moral authority. Pakistan's current democratic transition will hinge on how well Islamic parties contribute to civilian rule, shun violence, and mobilize support for political reform. 

Haroon K. Ullah is a scholar, U.S. diplomat, and field researcher specializing in South Asia and the Middle East. He currently serves on Secretary Kerry's Policy Planning Staff at the U.S. Department of State, where he focuses on public diplomacy and countering violent extremism. He grew up in a farming community in Washington State and was trained at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government, where he served as a senior Belfer Fellow and completed his MPA. He has a Ph.D. from the University of Michigan and was a William J. Fulbright Fellow, a Harvard University Presidential Scholar, a National Security Education Program Fellow and a Woodrow Wilson Public Service Fellow. Dr. Haroon Ullah is the author of Vying for Allah's Vote (Georgetown University Press, 2013) and Bargain from the Bazaar (Public Affairs Books, 2014).

More About the Speakers

Haroon K. Ullah, Ph.D.
Member, Secretary Kerry’s Policy Planning Staff, U.S. Department of State 

With Commentary by
Peter R. Lavoy, Ph.D.
Partner, Monitor 360, and former Acting Assistant Secretary of Defense for Asian and Pacific Security Affairs

Hosted By

Lisa Curtis Lisa Curtis

Senior Research Fellow Read More