Via McLatchy Hardly a startling revelation, it's always been surprising how post 9-11 a deepening crisis in Pakistan was largely ignored. Our deceptively easy initial intervention in the Afghan war and the Iraqi misadventure are partly to blame but Cold War mindsets lie behind this lack of focus. If Barry was coming at this problem without the collection of strategic deficits bequeathed to him by the last two feckless incumbents it would be hard enough: a large populous nuclear power with a genocide prone military rapidly going off the rails. As it is he's faced with a draining long term commitment to Iraq an increasingly difficult Pashtun war, a cocky empowered Qom and an increasingly belligerent Kremlin. Add to this he now heads a heavily indebted tax shy nation addicted to the drunken sailor spending sprees of the Bush years that's deep in hock to its strategic rivals. It's perhaps time to sit back and really consider Afghanistan in the wider context of the region. The risks South of the Durand line are of a different order and our vague notions of what victory might look like in Afghanistan may not be compatible with Pakistan's stability or even existence. Talk of escalating the Pushtan war may have provided a chance to hang tough on the campaign trail how it affects the containment of Islamabad's problems should be on our minds.