In Their Own Words: Understanding Lashkar-e-Tayyaba

C. Christine Fair
Pub date
Mar 2019
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This pathbreaking volume reveals a little-known aspect of how Lashkar-e-Tayyaba functions in Pakistan and beyond. Only a fraction of LeT's cadres ever see battle: most of them are despatched on nation-wide 'proselytising' (dawa) missions to convert Pakistanis to their particular interpretation of Islam, in support of which LeT has developed a sophisticated propagandist literature. This canon of Islamist texts is the most popular and potent weapon in LeT's arsenal, and its scrutiny affords insights into how and who the group recruits; LeT's justification for jihad; its vision of itself in global and regional politics; the enemies LeT identifies and the allies it cultivates; and how and where it conducts its operations. Particular attention is paid to the role that LeT assigns to women by examining those writings which heap extravagant praise upon the mothers of aspirant jihadis, who bless their operations and martyrdom. It is only by understanding LeT's domestic functions as set out in these texts that one can begin to appreciate why Pakistan so fiercely supports it, despite mounting international pressure to disband the group.


1. Introduction
2. The Genesis of the Indo-Pakistan Security Competition
3. Pakistan's Creeping Jihad and Expanding Nuclear Umbrella
4. What is the LeT? A Critical Examination
5. Who Are the Soldiers in the Army of the Pure?
6. The Domestic Politics of LeT
7. Dealing with LeT and Escaping Pakistan's Nuclear Coercion
Appendix 1. Notes on Transliteration and Translation
Appendix 2. List of Acronyms
Appendix 3. Glossary of Non-English Words
Select Bibliography

About the author: 

C. Christine Fair is a Provost''s Distinguished Associate Professor in the Security Studies Program within Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University, USA.

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