The tragic results of war with India for Pakistan
War between nuclear-armed India and Pakistan over last month's militant attacks on the Indian city of Mumbai is seen as highly unlikely.
Nevertheless, with tension high and fiery rhetoric coming from various quarters on both sides, conflict between the neighbours who have fought three wars since 1947 cannot be ruled out.
Here is a look at some possible scenarios for Pakistan in the event of war:
War would bring a wave of patriotism and national unity, analysts say. However, the authority of the civilian government that came to power this year after nine years of military rule, and had been trying to improve ties with India, would be undermined as the military would take charge of key decision-making. - At the end of a war, assuming the country has not been flattened by Indian nuclear strikes, the government would be under huge pressure to deal with the economic consequences.
Efforts to establish stable and sustainable civilian rule could be set back years. - India could try to stir up trouble in regions such as the energy-rich province of Baluchistan, where Pakistan says India has been meddling for years in support of separatist rebels fighting a low-key insurgency.
Similarly, Afghans, perhaps egged on by close ally India, could revive calls for a greater "Pashtunistan" (Afghanistan has never recognised the border with Pakistan, imposed by British colonialists in the 19th century, which divided ethnic Pashtuns). - Such developments in Baluchistan and the Pashtun-dominated northwest would revive deep-seated Pakistani fears of the break-up of their country.
The Pakistani military would effectively give up its part in the U.S.-led war on terrorism, analysts say, as it pulls troops off the western border with Afghanistan, where they have been battling militants, and deploys them on the eastern border with India. - Pakistani Taliban militants have already said they would rally to help the Pakistani military in the event of war against India.
Pakistani efforts to rein in militant groups fighting Indian rule in the disputed Kashmir region would likely be reversed and the groups would be given a green light, or official support, to raise funds, recruit fighters and infiltrate India.
Public sympathy and support for militant groups would soar as they would be seen as national defenders against the "real enemy", India. - That would be the death knell for government attempts to convince a skeptical public that militancy has to be rooted out, and efforts to tackle it are for the good of the country and not just doing America's bidding.