Fletcher in the News

Prof. William Martel Comments on Jailbreaks and Governance in Iraq, Libya and Pakistan

The Christian Science Monitor

William C. Martel is Associate Professor of International Security Studies at The Fletcher School, Tufts University.

Jailbreak! Security Found Lacking in Iraq, Libya, Pakistan

Nearly 250 prisoners have escaped from a Pakistani prison following a massive assault that killed 12 people, including five police officers.

Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), also known as the Pakistan Taliban, has claimed responsibility for the prison break, which took place in the town of Dera Ismail Khan in the northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province, reports Dawn. Though Pakistan’s government has promised to end its decade-long conflict with the TTP, which has killed more than 50,000 people, peace talks are looking less likely after several deadly attacks by the insurgent group.

The prison assault comes only days after similar attacks on prisons in Iraq and Libya saw hundreds of prisoners freed as well. Though thousands of miles apart from one another, the prison breaks in these three countries reflect dismally on the states’ capacity to govern – and on US stabilization efforts, say analysts. 

“We are watching countries that have crucial implications for US security,” says William C. Martel, an associate professor of international security studies at Tufts University’s Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. “[Countries] that are in the throes of various forms of political, economic, and social disintegration." 

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