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US intelligence details the economy and politics of 'Pakistanians'

Updated January 21, 2017

The following is an excerpt from a declassified document released online by America’s Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) as part of a searchable database on its website Reading Room. Declassified documents were previously only available to the public at the National Archives in College Park, Maryland.


In a transcript of a speech titled ‘Area Survey of the Middle East’, and originally released on 17 April 2001, the CIA have examined and analysed a host of nations. During the speech, under the moniker of the Middle East, the CIA have clumped together nations, including Pakistan, India, Ceylon, Iran, Turkey, Greece, Egypt, Israel and Arab states, among others.


Page 1 of the declassified document
Page 1 of the declassified document

Dating back to circa late sixties, adjudged by the fact they refer to Sri Lanka as Ceylon, the CIA describe the physical and political terrain, the economy and current trends of the region.

The transcript of the speech describes Pakistan, India and Israel as “genuinely immature” nations, largely down to their relative infancy as states.

Page 2 of the declassified document
Page 2 of the declassified document

It goes on to state how Pakistan, Turkey and Greece want to be involved in the “modern world” but cannot do so without support from “the outside.”

Page 4 of the declassified document
Page 4 of the declassified document

Shedding light on the economy, an excerpt details how fragile states rely on a single commodity for foreign exchange, and how the markets at the time weren’t ideal for such scenarios. Pakistan’s reliance on jute exports, and the subsequent under performance of that market resulting in a struggling economy, is a also detailed.

Page 4 of the declassified document
Page 4 of the declassified document

Page 4 of the declassified document
Page 4 of the declassified document

Interestingly of all, during segment of the speech, Pakistan and India’s intelligence and information gathering was also crticised for their biases.

Page 15 of the declassified document
Page 15 of the declassified document

Meanwhile the Central Intelligence Agency, referring to Pakistanis and “Pakistanians”, assumes a lack of resources available for both Pakistan and India in relation to information gathering.

Page 15 of the declassified document
Page 15 of the declassified document


The abovementioned document is part of a database of 930,000 previously-confidential files released by the CIA on January 17, 2017. The CIA had disseminated historical declassified documents to its CIA Records Search Tool (CREST) since 1999.

To view Dawn.com's compilation of extracts from the declassified CIA documents, click here.