The United States, which has pumped military aid into Pakistan since 2001, pledged billions of dollars in 2009 to help shore up the civilian government, whose stability the Obama administration views as key to success in the Afghanistan war. The Taliban and al-Qaeda are based in Pakistan's border region, from where they launch attacks on NATO troops. But homegrown militants pose a rising threat to the Pakistani state.
The Post adds that widespread popular anger at the government – which could happen if legislative deadlock occurs – has in the past led to military coups in Pakistan.
The government of nuclear-armed Pakistan has no control over large parts of the country, where militant groups like the Taliban are strong. Government offensives against the group have failed to dislodge it, despite repeated claims of success, the Monitor reported. Such groups are still able to launch attacks, such as a suicide bombing by a female in the northwest tribal areas last month that killed at least 45.