people of Pakistan, but the army of Pakistan,” he said. “China’s bet is that the army will continue to remain in control of Pakistan’s politics, no matter who is in power.”Pakistan is in the midst of an extreme economic crisis, with its people facing hunger and unemployment, while opaque loans from its closest ally, China, are hindering bailout negotiations with the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The country has had 23 bailouts from the IMF, and its foreign reserves are critically low, forcing it to ban imports of essential food and medicine. Global allies no longer trust Pakistan for new loans, leaving the IMF as its only option. The current stalemate with the IMF is attributed to former Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan, who reneged on his austerity commitments, damaging Pakistan’s future negotiation position. Years of bad economic policies, natural disasters, and increased political instability have all contributed to the crisis. Critics allege Khan is using the political instability for his own gains, while China’s opaque loan dealings and its bet on Pakistan’s army have raised concerns.