I know what you’re thinking: Is Eric cracked in the head? This is a financial blog for goodness sakes. Who cares about a country halfway around the world anyway? Well, aside from the fact that our erstwhile founder, Yasir Khan hails from Pakistan, there is a very good reason for us here in the United States to be very worried indeed about the possible implosion of Pakistan. Here’s why:

A Little Background

For those not familiar with Pakistan, it is a primarily Muslim country which borders India and which was carved out from the existing state known as India. The Indians themselves were actually a British colony, originally run by a corporation, the British East India Company (and you thought the idea of corporations ruling countries was something only Trump haters thought of).

In 1947, as India was gaining independence, the Muslims in India decided that they didn’t want to be connected to the Indians and so they held a vote to create their own country, Pakistan. Wikipedia even says that Pakistan is unique for having been the only country ever created specifically to serve the Muslim religion. I suppose that’s true in a way but isn’t Saudi Arabia a Muslim created country too? Anyway, I digress. It’s not really important but just an interesting factoid.

The thing is, as with any messy breakup (just ask my ex-wife about it), there were problems. The Indians and the Pakistanis both laid claim to an area called Kashmir. Oh and in case you were wondering, that fine cashmere sweater in your closet is from goats originally bread in Kashmir, hence the name. This meant that the two countries have been in a state of perpetual war with each other since they were founded.

That in turn has led to both India and Pakistan developing nuclear weapons. They are just two of four countries in the world who are not members of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty to possess such weapons (the other two are Israel and North Korea). Now, if you don’t yet get why the possible implosion of Pakistan is a problem, let me say that again: nuclear weapons!

Nuclear Weapons are bad for Business

For all the worry in the world over a nuclear holocaust, the fact is that there aren’t very many countries that have the things. Aside from the four I mentioned earlier, only the USA, Russia, France, China and the United Kingdom have nuclear weapons, though Iran was and possibly is trying to get them too.

The thing about nuclear weapons is that they are dam* scary. Nothing strikes fear in the heart of human beings so much as the thought of being annihilated in a flash of nuclear fury. We watch shows like The 100 and Jericho because they are freakin’ scary – yes, it could happen. Maybe. We friggin’ hope not.

Now imagine Pakistan does go the way of Syria (and if you don’t know what I’m talking about, your name is probably Gary Johnson). This is a country with nuclear weapons and one in which there would theoretically be nobody minding the store anymore because the country has fallen apart in the way that Syria has.

Even if no nukes actually explode in American cities, you can imagine that knowing there is a real chance one of those things could take out New York is going to lead to a whole lot of people being scared about the future. You know what scared people do? They hunker down and don’t spend money. People don’t spend money and our economy goes in the toilet.

Don’t Even Get Me Started on the Refugees

Syria is or at least was home to around 23 million people, hundreds of thousands of whom are trying to get into Europe and the United States to escape the perpetual war in their country. Care to guess the numbers in Pakistan? 194 million. Yikes. That’s a whole lot of potential migrants desperately fleeing a failed state.

And we all know that even though the majority of migrants are not dangerous, there are always a few bad apples out there who are determined to bring the misery of their failed home countries to us, just for laughs of course. Not. That means again that our economy suffers under the burden and that means we are screwed economically.

But Is It Going to Happen?

The term failed state gets bandied around a lot regarding Pakistan these days. It basically means a country which has gone up in smoke and which no longer really functions like a country. Kind of the way Syria is today – it’s still technically got a government in Damascus but large parts of Syria are run by rebels or ISIS and in these areas, basic government services like sanitation and education kind of don’t happen.

Pakistan is definitely showing signs of being a failed state – they have terrorist attacks constantly and thanks to our president’s weak will about properly finishing the job in Afghanistan, the Taliban moved into Pakistan and today, large chunks of the country are run not by the government but by gangs and terrorist factions. It’s kind of like what our future president says about inner cities but on steroids.

Pakistan’s Saving Grace

Remember how I mentioned the nuclear weapons Pakistan has? They are one big part of the reason that I don’t think Pakistan will completely implode. For all that President Obama has been bowing and scraping to the whole world and trying to say that America shouldn’t be a world leader anymore, the fact is that he and other world leaders understand how scary a failed state with nukes would be.

In addition to that, Pakistan also has an important strategic position since it border Afghanistan and China. That means that our government, along with the Chinese and the Russians are all investing heavily in Pakistan’s government, even though they know it’s corrupt. They know that they need to prop up the government because if it falls, the end result could be disaster for the world.

Bottom Line

We live in a scary world where things can easily fall apart any day now. However, for all the weakness of our current president, even he understands that we need to help keep the world from blowing itself up.

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