Pakistan is a failing state, and barring a mammoth bail-out few can now afford, it will become the world’s first bankrupt nuclear power. Bowed down by our own financial crisis and an economy teetering on the edge of recession, should we care? In sovereign terms the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, which last year celebrated its 60th birthday, is into its adolescent years, now something of a cross between a prodigal son and the family’s black sheep. A major exporter of fertiliser, potash and terrorists, it is also the world’s only Muslim nuclear power. The country’s ruling authorities, supported and undermined in equal measures by a raft of millionaire military officers, landed gentry, feudal landlords, industrialists, extremists and religious zealots, are forced to recognise their roots as an Islamic nation while tipping a nod toward a constitutionally secular legislature.