March 2014(EDITION 9, Volume 50)
Asif Jehangir Raja
Pakistan is confronted with security challenges, both from internal and external enemies. While we have a neighbour that maintains a massive force structure across Eastern borders, there is existence of extremist elements within our society, though ....Read full article
Dr Hasan Askari Rizvi
Change is the essence of global politics. The challenge for a state is to recognize the changing trends and make necessary adjustments in its approach to other countries and the global system. The broad goals of a state may remain unaltered, the strategies have to be updated ....Read full article
Brian Cloughley
“We have declared that the fate of Kashmir is ultimately to be decided by the people. That pledge we have given, and the Maharajah has supported it, not only to the people of Kashmir but to the world. We will not and cannot back out of it.”....Read full article
Ejaz Haider
Even as the internal security threat to Pakistan increases, the country continues to debate whether the threat is to be countered through dialoguing with the adversary or fighting him. Leaving aside the fact that a complex conflict situation cannot be reduced ....Read full article
Amir Zia
A leading English-language monthly magazine carried Pakistan's founding father Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah's caricature on the cover of its February issue, showing him espousing a beard instead of the familiar clean-shaven face we all know....Read full article
The Indian military is facing a moment where it has to choose between fighting the debilitating effects of a slow economy after 2011 versus the pursuit of a largely Pakistan-specific military buildup....Read full article
Dr Fariha Zeeshan
Military wounds typically occur through ballistic trauma and high-energy transfer, as even on routine operations soldiers may become injured in accidents. However, when discussing military wounds, we usually refer to those sustained through gunshots....Read full article
Capt Muhammad Arbab
Pakistan made a new record. Pakistanis are feeling proud. People are clapping, friends are standing with me, family members are watching me live on TV. I was looking at the crowd in disbelief, thinking that was it really me; a world record holder....Read full article
Col Ehsan Mehmood Khan
“The objectives of foreign policy must be defined in terms of the national interest and must be supported with adequate power.” – Hans J. Morgenthau Interests form to be the nucleus of human relationships from individual to communities, and nations to alliances. The term 'interest' is used in a number of ways and with ....Read full article
Maj Asif Jehangir Raja
Q: Briefly explain us the external and internal security challenges Pakistan is facing today? What and how should we prioritize the response so as not to lose balance against any of the foes? Answer: Pakistan is bedeviled by both external and internal challenges at present....Read full article
Didier Chaudet
Were India and Israel supposed to be friends? Not necessarily, when one looks at history. It is, perhaps, forgotten today that New Delhi had voted against the creation of Israel at the UN in 1947. Still in the United Nations' ....Read full article
Dr Zafar Mahmood
A sovereign debt default occurs when a country does not meet a debt payment (principal or interest), i.e., it fails to meet the terms of a contractual agreement. A country that repudiates its debt faces the threat of sanctions such as loss of access to short-term ....Read full article
Salman Rashid
The sun set and the blue welkin above turned a nameless colour – the same as the dunes around us. The lowing of cattle and the dong-dong of their bells died down. And so too the bleating of the goats. Only the occasional harsh bray of an ass broke the silence....Read full article

Maj Gen (Retd) Salim Ullah
The first dispute was related to the North East, created by the British, specifically by Olaf Caroe – the Lawrence of India – in the mid 1930s. He resurrected the idea of annexing a swathe of Chinese territory in the Northeast, in order to give India what ....Read full article
Asif Jehangir Raja
Q1. You were born in England and have your roots in Pakistan. Please tell us something about your upbringing and family background. Answer: My family is originally from Matore in Pakistan. It is a town in Tehsil Kahuta, District Rawalpindi. This is where my grandparents came from and I still have ....Read full article
Dr Qaiser Chaudry
Man has always sought help from the Nature to solve the queries. Be it Newton's exploration of law of gravity, seeing an apple falling to ground or water spilling from Archimedes tub to solve for purity of gold, nature has always come to the rescue....Read full article
As spring edges closer to most parts of the country, it is time to let go of heavy moisturizers and dark colours to make way for effortlessness of spring. As it is with our fashion choices transition to more fresh and light fabrics and materials, the beauty regime requires similar endeavours....Read full article
Mohsin Fazal
The Tourism Development Corporation of Punjab (TDCP) is a well known organization working for the development of tourism in Pakistan. In order to promote adventure sports, different events are organized in the country. These events include famous Cholistan ....Read full article
Pakistan is confronted with security challenges, both from internal and external enemies. While we have a neighbour that maintains a massive force structure across Eastern borders, there is existence of extremist elements within our society, though in short numbers, who want to achieve their objectives and impose their agenda through violence. The magnitude of threat is unusual. It is quite enormous than what all is being perceived at general level. To face this threat, we need commitment, determination, patience and perseverance at national level. We need to be united. The requirement to understand the phenomenon referred to as 'National Unity' is becoming increasingly urgent, given the problems that Pakistan confronts today. Talk of any solution or option to overcome the existing challenges; it originates from the foundation of national unity. Looking in the East, we find the recent increase in Indian Defence Budget to the alarming 10 % on 17 February 2014, reaching over $42 billion; eight times more than Pakistan. According to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, India is a top market for defence hardware, having procured $12.7 billion worth of arms during 2007-2011. With the Himalayas running through the entire length of the India-China border, any increase in the military muscle by India can be inferred as Pakistan centric. Certainly, Indian tanks cannot cross over Himalayas and are thus directed against Pakistan only. The hate pervading across the border is evident from the recent incidents following Pak-India cricket match on 2 March 2014 where, according to the media, 67 Kashmiri students were suspended from Swami Vivekanand Subharti University (SVSU) in Meerut (Uttar Pradesh) for chanting slogans in favour of Pakistan. Similarly Sharda University, again in Uttar Pradesh also expelled six students on the similar charges. Talking of the internal front, Pakistani state and society have suffered huge social, economic, infrastructural and human cost due to the terrorism. We are hoping for the peace to return, but there are no sureties until there is end to all type of violence. We have to look beyond sectarian, ethnic, social, political and cultural differences for betterment of this country. There is no other choice for us. Pakistan has much to achieve to be at par with the developed nations, which is not possible, unless we support each other. The changing times do not leave anything un-changed. The destiny of Pakistan ought to be changed provided we remain united against all odds. The Armed Forces, backed by the people of Pakistan, are prepared and trained to face all challenges and will continue to protect the citizens, at any cost.

Written By: Nabila

As spring edges closer to most parts of the country, it is time to let go of heavy moisturizers and dark colours to make way for effortlessness of spring. As it is with our fashion choices transition to more fresh and light fabrics and materials, the beauty regime requires similar endeavours. With the advent of warmer weather there will be the usual flood of printed lawns, floral patterns, cotton, whites and what not. Skin requires light weight moisturizers and gentle cleansing more often, hair also have to be let down, and their weight taken out. The colours for spring 2014 are fresh pastels, think French macrons if you need inspiration. Pink, peach, orange and warn pinks instantly freshen up even the dullest looks. The contouring is kept very subtle and natural, abandoning heavy foundation and powder in favour of fresh, glowing skin. Our take on this trend features a subtle peachy tangerine shady of orange inspired in part by the youthful charm of spring. Skip the heavy eye shadows this season as you may want to look on the bright side, while there have been dark smokey eyes but a creamy sheer burgundy eyes are subtle and optimistic option. The eyes of the moment show a lot of skin and they are not very fussy- dabbed on the lid and perhaps below, without massive contouring and highlighting. At their best, they combine the glamour of smokey, ease of the neutral and a nice dollop of fresh fruit hues. Orange lips are a major beauty trend in spring 2014 in all its hues, from a luxuriously moist alternative at DKNY, a matt variant at Prabal Gurung to an almost neon shade at Rag and Bone Spring Summer 2014 collections. Popular celebrities like Jessica Alba, Kate Bosworth and Drew Barrymore have long realized the appeal of tangerine lips and have been seen rocking them while wearing everything from a black-and-white outfit – which lets orange lips pop to similarly hued gowns.

Orange looks best against a exposed tanned olive skin of Pakistani women with lots of black mascara and little else. If you're pale or have pink and red in your skin, go for pastel oranges or oranges that have more coral or red in them. Those with warm skin tones and medium complexions can get away with bolder shades or orange and oranges that contain a bit of gold and yellow in them. If you have dark skin, your best bet is to stick with oranges that contain a brown or deep-red base. For hair pulled back neatly and accessorized with jewelry, taking inspiration from the crowns at Dolce & Gabbana, flowers at Anna Sui, and stars in the hair at Rodarte appears a great choice. From beautiful floral prints and exquisite embroideries covering your garments, to some light jeweled headpieces adorning your hair, the transition appears not only easy, but also natural. We put in some dangling pieces on the head to adorn the otherwise simply styled hair. Perfect for weddings, garden parties and festivals alike, statement head accessories can instantly add the required drama and interest. One can opt for a headband, clips, or even embellished rubber bands to try this trend yourself.

Nabila is an eponymous name in the world of fashion and styling. She has been working in the industry for well over 27 years. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Written By: Capt Muhammad Arbab

Pakistan made a new record. Pakistanis are feeling proud. People are clapping, friends are standing with me, family members are watching me live on TV. I was looking at the crowd in disbelief, thinking that was it really me; a world record holder who managed to complete 50544 pushups in 24 hours and also set a record by doing 65 pushups with 40 pound weight in one minute with one hand.

It was one of the best moments in my life when officials from the Guinness World Record announced about my achievement. “How do you feel being a world record holder?” was the first question by them. I could not express my feeling at that time. But how does a man feel after being declared as the best in any of categories at world level; I was standing and trying to find out within me. Thinking... I was born on 12 April 1991 in village Dowakhri near the town of Gojra (Faisalabad). My father, Mr. Anwar Ul Haq, is an agriculturalist who owns lands in our village. I had my earlier education from Cadet College Kallar Kahar. I excelled both in academics and sports; was member of my college sports team as well as secured first position in the college in the Matric Exams. Usain Bolt was one of my ideals. When I heard about his world record, somewhere in the corner of my heart, a wish also arose that I might also elevate to world level someday. At that time, I had not thought of making the record that I achieved recently, but that particular wish was start of my journey to the world record.

I was selected for commission in Pak Army in 2009 with 124th Pakistan Military Academy (PMA) Long Course. At PMA also, I was declared Mr. Fittest of my course. After passing out, I was posted to 38 S & T Battalion. I carried on with my physical fitness and regularly participated in PT and sports activities which are part of the military routine. In 2010, concept of 'Physical Agility and Combat Efficiency System' (PACES) was introduced in Pak Army which brought fresh wave of competitiveness in physical aspects among soldiers. Although routine in the army keeps men associated with the physical activities throughout the service but PACES is meant to further polish the already polished talent. During the conduct of same competition, my hidden talent surprised me and military authorities alike when I completed 2638 pushups at formation level. Then I participated in First Army PACES Championship in May 2012 held at Sialkot and secured first position in the whole army by doing 6638 pushups in four hours and 22950 sit-ups in 12 hours. I was also awarded the prize by the then Chief of Army Staff General (Retd) Ashfaq Parvez Kayani who appreciated me and also encouraged me to prepare for the world record. I was honoured by the COAS when he offered me to join his parent unit, 5 Baloch Regiment; that I happily accepted.

Pak Army directed PACES cell to prepare the athletes for world record under a competent team. 27 individuals were selected from whole army and my journey to world record officially commenced. It looked impossible in the start but I kept working hard and didn't lose heart. Every day was a challenge but we were determined to do it. During the training, all aspects were kept in consideration. My diet habits were changed, physical fitness routine was polished and I was mentally and physically groomed by Pak Army to become a champion one day. I was not allowed to eat spicy dishes, not even Biryani (my favourite dish). In October 2013, we were asked to pick up the categories for world record. I decided to pick the toughest one: maximum pushups in 24 hours, to show the world that how tough are the soldiers of Pak Army irrespective of their ranks. For next four months, I had only one thing in my mind: to break the record of 46001 pushups made by Charles Servizio from USA in 1993. During the Punjab Youth Festival held in Lahore, I managed to break his record and include my name in the book. I am not alone in this achievement, as my instructors and coaches deserve full credit for grooming me to reach this level. Their names include: Brig Yousaf Baig who heads the PACES project, Maj Dr Touseef Haider, Hav Habib, Hav Asif, Nk Imran and Nk Amjad. I am also thankful to my family and friends who kept me motivated and helped me in achieving this goal.

Pakistan has no dearth of talent and given opportunities, all are ready to deliver.

Written By: Dr Fariha Zeeshan

Military wounds typically occur through ballistic trauma and high-energy transfer, as even on routine operations soldiers may become injured in accidents. However, when discussing military wounds, we usually refer to those sustained through gunshots, multiple fragmentation injury secondary to grenades, improvised explosive devices, landmines and suicide bombings. Military wounds are often heavily contaminated as a result of the environment in which they are sustained, the improvised nature of the explosive devices, and the fact that soldiers are often only able to maintain basic hygiene. Healing of wounds, whether from accidental injury or surgical intervention, involves the activity of an intricate network of blood cells, tissue types, cytokines, and growth factors. This results in increased cellular activity, which causes an intensified metabolic demand for nutrients. The objective in wound management is to heal the wound in the shortest time possible, with minimal pain, discomfort, and scarring to the patient.

Nutrition plays an essential role in wound healing and wound care practices, and nutritional support needs to be considered a fundamental part of wound management. Poor nutrition before or during the healing process may delay healing and impair wound strength, making the wound more prone to breakdown. Neglecting the nutritional health of an individual with a wound can compromise the entire wound management process. There is a large body of evidence demonstrating the essential role of nutrition in wound healing. Without adequate nutrition, healing may be impaired and prolonged. Wound healing is a complex process in simple terms; it is the process of replacing injured tissue with new tissue produced by the body which demands an increased consumption of energy and particular nutrients, particularly protein and calories. A wound causes a number of changes in the body that can affect the healing process, including changes in energy, protein, carbohydrate, fat, vitamin and mineral metabolism. When the body sustains a wound, stress hormones are released in a fight-or-flight reaction and the metabolism alters in order to supply the injured area with the nutrients it needs to heal known as the catabolic phase.

If the catabolic phase is prolonged and/or the body is not provided with adequate nutrient supplies, then the body can enter a Protein Energy Malnutrition (PEM) state. PEM is the most serious type of malnutrition – when there is an inadequate or impaired absorption of both protein and energy. PEM causes the body to break down protein for energy, reducing the supply of amino acids needed to maintain body proteins and healing, and causing loss of lean body mass. Therefore PEM may be directly linked to wounds that aren't healing. Even in today's society where we are fortunate to have access to a variety of nutritional foods, people often suffer from malnutrition. Military casualties will have frequently been involved in high intensity exertion before injury and may not have had access to high calorie food, fresh fruit or vegetables for some time.

Nutrition for chronic wounds needs to be assessed on an individual basis; wounds especially larger or multiple on legs in military people place high demand for nutrients on the body. Infected wounds also increase nutrient demand as they cause more tissue damage, further strain and a deeper ulcer. Protein is the most important aspect of your diet when healing from a wound. Energy (calories from carbohydrates and fats), amino acids, antioxidants and minerals (zinc) are also important.

Protein helps repair the damaged tissue from your wound. You'll want to take in more protein than usual to help the healing process. This means at least 2 servings of protein a day, or added high protein sources like eggs whites, serving means amount equal to 3 boneless meat pieces. Fats from dairy products are essential for wound healing. Cell membranes are created with the use of fatty acids, and you'll need to take in extra sources of these to maintain healing. Cooking oils and meats are also a good source of fats. One cup of milk or yogurt would be good example. Taking in plenty of carbohydrates is essential to prevent the body from using other nutrients and protein for energy. Cereals, breads, rice and pasta are good sources of energy, and should be included in your diet as 6-11 servings daily. Vitamin C is an important antioxidant for wound healing. It increases the strength of the wound as it heals, and it helps with the creation of collagen in the skin. Citrus fruits and leafy green vegetables are great sources of vitamin C. Recommended vitamin C supplementation for deficient patients is 60-200 mg daily.

Vitamin A is another crucial antioxidant. Vitamin A levels have to be monitored closely, because toxicity can occur if too much is consumed. Red fruits and vegetables, eggs, fish and dark green vegetables are all good sources of vitamin A. Zinc helps the body synthesize proteins and develop collagen, so it is an important mineral for wound healing. The recommended intake of zinc for non-healing pressure ulcers is 15mg/day. Dietary zinc sources include red meat, fish and shellfish, milk products, poultry and eggs. Hydration status is equally important as nutritional status and care must be taken to meet fluid requirements. This approach is not the responsibility of one profession; effective communication between all the people caring for a patient will improve the outcome. The patient must remain central to this process.

The writer is a reputed clinical dietitian at The Aga Khan University Hospital. She has done her M.Sc in Nutrition and her specialty includes General Nutrition, Gastroenterology, General Medicine, and Endocrinology. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Written By: Dr Qaiser Chaudry

Man has always sought help from the Nature to solve the queries. Be it Newton's exploration of law of gravity, seeing an apple falling to ground or water spilling from Archimedes tub to solve for purity of gold, nature has always come to the rescue. As a Muslim, we believe in the Qur’aanic Verses which state

“And it is He who spread the earth and placed therein firmly set mountains and rivers; and from all of the fruits He made therein two mates; He causes the night to cover the day. Indeed in that are signs for a people who give thought.” Chapter (13) Sura Ar-Ra’d (The Thunder) Verse 3 The people of thought in the computer science world explored the Laws of Nature and found solution to their problem embedded in theory of evolution and called it Genetic Algorithm (GA). The category of problems intended to be solved by the GA are called optimization problems. GA is designed for approximately solving a problem in a quick fashion, when classic methods (designed for precise solution) are too slow. GA mimics the process of natural selection where the strongest individuals are selected for reproduction so that the best genes are passed to the next generation. The individuals carry most of the features of their parents but do have some new features which help them adapt to the environment and succeed.

If the new features are useful and make an individual successful in its generation, they will be passed to the next generation while features which contribute to a weaker individual will automatically be discarded as the weaker individuals won't have a chance to reproduce. Similarly GA evolves better solutions from a large set of candidate solutions. Each candidate solution has a set of properties which can be mutated and altered. The process starts with the definition of the objective function for the optimization problem. A set of individuals (candidate solutions) is selected randomly from a large population. The fitness of each individual is evaluated based on the value of the objective function produced by the individual. The best or fittest individuals from this set (generation) are selected for reproduction.

During the reproduction phase individuals combine (crossover) to produce the next generation of solutions. The newly created solutions are also subjected to a random mutation process which alters a small part of the solution. The new generation is again tested for fitness and the process goes on till the time a desired level of fitness is achieved or the solution has evolved through a maximum number of generations. A very famous example solved using the GA is called a Travelling Salesman Problem “TSP”. A salesman has to travel a number of cities and he knows the distances between each of them. The objective is to find the shortest route so that the salesman can visit each city only once and then return to the city from where he started. If it is a small number of cities, we can find the answer easily by simply looking at all the possible routes. As the number of cities grows, it becomes np-hard (Non– deterministic Polynomial time hard) problem. For example, 30 cities will require evaluation of 30 factorial or 2.65x1032 solutions which is a huge search space.

Using GA approach we were able to find the solution evaluating only 1500 generations of 3000 individuals each with a total processing time of approximately 4 minutes on a core i5 PC. The figure printed with article shows a graphical view of different generations during the evolution process. It can be clearly seen that the correct solution evolved over generations. Also the solution population (bottom right rainbow coloured area) shows that all the individuals in population evolved to be quite similar and genetically close to the best solution.

The strength of GA lies in provision of intelligent solutions with simplicity of implementation. This has already created a lot of interest and researchers have successfully used GA for feature selection in machine learning algorithms, community link detection in social network applications, puzzle generation in computer games, network design and routing, supply chain management etc. With availability of ever increasing computational performance at cheaper costs, the future of GA looks bright. Nevertheless, this leaves us to ponder as to why it takes us so long to come up with solutions which Allah has already revealed. “Which then, of the favours of your Lord, will you deny?” (Surah Ar-Rehman)

The writer is PhD from Georgia Institute of Technology USA and is currently on the faculty of College of EME (NUST), Rawalpindi. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Written By: Mohsin Fazal

The Tourism Development Corporation of Punjab (TDCP) is a well known organization working for the development of tourism in Pakistan. In order to promote adventure sports, different events are organized in the country. These events include famous Cholistan Jeep Rally, World Tourism Day, Battle of Bands, Youth and Sports Festival Punjab, Water Sport Festival and Rohtas Jeep Rally, to mention few. TDCP Cholistan Jeep Rally event began in the majestic desert of Cholistan, during the year 2005, with a view to promote Southern Punjab as a winter tourist destination, and a way to introduce motor sports in Pakistan.

Cholistan is locally known as Rohi. This famous desert is 30 km from Bahawalpur and comprises an area of approximately 16,000 sq km, extending up to the Thar Desert and over to Sindh province. 'Camel and Jeep Safaris and Tours' in the Cholistan Desert give tourists the opportunity to learn and experience a nomadic life and culture, with the availability of experienced tourist guides and modern facilities at their disposal. Similarly, the Jeep Rally affords an opportunity to the people to visit Derawar Fort, one of the famous ancient forts of Pakistan. TDCP 9th Cholistan Jeep Rally was held from 14th February 16th February 2014. Although it was a challenging task to hold such big event in the far flung desert yet the team of TDCP worked day and night in holding this event successfully.

During the event, Cholistan was hub of activities. The Derawar Fort gave a spectacular view at night due to its exquisite illumination. A beautiful display of fireworks was also part of the event. The night event also included holding of cultural programme for the entertainment of participants. TDCP arranged camping facility for the visitors to get a different touch of desert life away from the cities. 'Camel and Jeep Safari and Tours' in Cholistan gave tourists the opportunity to learn and experience a wondering life style and culture. People explored the desert riding on camel back and nights under the open sky. The Rohi (Cholistan) is beautiful and the people of this area are respectful and humble.

The 9th Cholistan Jeep Rally was won by Mr. Nadir Magsi in 'A' Category, Mr. Muhammad Awais Khakwani in 'B' Category, Mr. Mukesh Kumar Chawla in 'C' Category and Mr. Khan Muhammad in 'D' Category. Rana Mashhood Ahmad Khan, Minister for Tourism & Sports and Mr. Hamza Shahbaz Sharif MNA were Chief Guests in Prize Distribution Ceremony. They distributed cash prizes and trophies among the winners. An important highlight of the event was participation of two lady drivers in the race who made history by competing in this event along with male drivers.

As the Rally is gaining popularity, it is expected that drivers from other countries will also participate in the event in coming years.
The writer is Regional Manager of TDCP. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Written By: Salman Rashid

The sun set and the blue welkin above turned a nameless colour – the same as the dunes around us. The lowing of cattle and the dong-dong of their bells died down. And so too the bleating of the goats. Only the occasional harsh bray of an ass broke the silence. But even an hour after sundown, it did not go completely dark for the stars above shone with a passion as though this was the last night they were ever going to shine. In the flat, featureless (low dunes are hardly features) desert the stars became visible just as they cleared the eastern horizon. And if one had the patience, one could sit through the night to chart each star's arc clear across the velvet dome above. As evening progressed, spotted owls began to sound their churring calls as they swooped about after the various kinds of insects that prowl the desert at night. Still later, the little yelps of foxes, muted by the distance, could also be heard. Earlier, on the drive through the desert, we had surprised a couple of sand-coloured foxes en route. But without my Roberts' book of mammals, I was unable to identify them. Above us, the wind soughed through the kundi tree under which our charpoys lay. The crisp evening turned even cooler and due east the horizon glowed with the lights of some Indian town across the border.

We had motored a hundred and twenty kilometres southeast across the Cholistan Desert from Derawar Fort to Bijnot. The Indian frontier was another twenty-five kilometres away and a hundred and fifty kilometres to the east lay Bikaner. Someone said the glow on the horizon was from the lights of that city. But that obviously was not true or we could also have seen the lights of Bahawalpur an equal distance to the north. Outside the little compound where we were bedded down, rose the ruined turrets and shattered walls of Bijnot Fort – one of the dozen or more dotted across the grey dunes of Cholistan. The annals of Jaisalmer, as recorded by James Tod, tell the story of a Bhatti prince called Tunno. In the course of his various adventures that do not concern this tale, Tunno acquired a vast hidden treasure with which he built a fort. Since the goddess Beejaseni had led him to the treasure, he called his fortress Beejnot after her. The year of construction is recorded in the annals as CE 757. The fort was held by the Rajputs for a full one thousand years until the 18th century. That was when the rising power of the Abbasi chieftains of Bahawalpur, began to eclipse that of the Rajputs in Cholistan. One by one, the fortresses of the desert fell to this doughty clan that claimed Arab descent. Bijnot was one among the last of the many that were taken by the Abbasis. Like the magnificent Derawar, Bijnot too must have been a mud-brick fort when it was built in the 8th century. Indeed, many ruined hulks sprinkled across the desert show that was how they built them in those long ago days.

Derawar was brick-lined after the Abbasis had taken over, so too must Bijnot have received its veneer not of bricks but of dressed limestone. For Derawar, they tell the story of a human chain conveying bricks, one by one, from Dera Nawab Sahib to the fort, forty-five kilometres away. But that clearly is a myth and there must have been a kiln in the vicinity of Derawar. In the case of Bijnot there should have been a story about a quarry whence the limestone would have come. If there was such a story, I failed to discover it. It should have been an interesting yarn for nowhere within several days' march of Bijnot can one see a limestone bed. The Rajputs ceded Bijnot to the Abbasis. After more than two centuries of holding it, they in turn passed it on to the government after Bahawalpur was merged with Pakistan in 1956. As tensions grew between Pakistan and India, Bijnot Fort came to house a contingent of Pakistan Rangers. Seventy-year old Allah Wasaya of Bijnot who had dyed his whiskers and hair an unreal jet-black did not have anything to say about the 1965 war. But in the 1971 war Indira bombed Bijnot Fort to pieces, he said. This was news for me. I hadn't known the late Mrs Gandhi was a gunnery expert! She also sent planes to finish off the destruction she had started, he added.

What Indira didn't know, Allah Wasaya said, was that the forces had moved away even before the fort had come into the range of Indian field guns. And when the shelling began, the fort was empty. Shortly after the shelling started, the villagers also left the area. Wasaya said that was just as well for as they fled west, they saw a dark pall rise above the desert: they knew their village had been taken and torched. For a full one year, Indira's army held their Bijnot until Bhutto came around to redeem it to the rightful owners. When they got back, the fort of Bijnot was a ruin and nothing remained of their village. They had to build everything anew. Everything, except the fort which remains a wreck to this day. The sun was low in the west as I entered the fort from its main gate. The wooden jambs had been wrenched away from the arched opening – perhaps by Mrs Gandhi's soldiers. Above the entrance was the residence of the killadar – the keeper of the fort. It was a spacious hall flanked by two smaller rooms and an open terrace that looked in to the fort's enceinte. Perhaps the killadar stood on this terrace to watch his men at drill. Flush with the east wall of the larger room was a banister-less staircase leading up to the roof where the flagstaff would have stood. Arched alcoves and doorways in unlikely places showed where rooms had once been. But Mrs Gandhi's bombs had turned roofs into rubble and only the alcoves and doorways recalled the bombed out rooms.

Just inside of the entrance with the killadar's quarters was a square of well-constructed barracks. These and the elongated galleries running to either side of the gateway reminded me of similar galleries in Kot Diji. Their domed roofs and thick walls would have kept the desert heat at bay while the soldiers rested during the hottest part of the day. From the extent of these barracks that run around the enceinte it could be said that this fort would easily have housed some three or four hundred armed soldiers. But now the interior of the fort was a mess of rubble and badly damaged hulks. So extensive was the destruction from Indian bombardment that it was even difficult to form a picture of Bijnot Fort's pristine glory. In the quadrant by the northeast corner of the fort, were two cisterns covered over by masonry. A round opening in the middle of the paving was the way the bucket could be lowered into draw water. An opening to one side of this cistern was how rainwater washed into the underground tanks. One still had water at the bottom, the other was dry. Both were now domiciled by blue rock pigeons that broke out of the hole in the top with a loud clattering of wings as I approached.

There are forts that defend ancient byways. There are others that function as garrisons on turbulent borders. There are yet more that are built to be safe havens in times of adversity. And there are those opulent forts – more palaces than forts, that serve as royal seats. And in Cholistan there is, they tell me, a line of forts along the bed of the lost Hakra River. Dilettantes never tire of pointing out that all the forts in Cholistan are along the bed of the Hakra. If that were true, this long-lost river would win a prize for being the most tortuously serpentine river in the entire world. Tunno Bhatti's Bijnot, obscure and remote, must surely have been built for no other purpose but to serve as a safe haven. Lying deep in the heart of the Cholistan Desert, it only received brief notice in Tod's Annals and Antiquities of Rajasthan. No more. Its lot was oblivion and we do not know what history unfolded within its walls.

The writer is an avid tourist, has authored several books and contributes regularly for national and international media. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Written By: Dr Zafar Mahmood

A sovereign debt default occurs when a country does not meet a debt payment (principal or interest), i.e., it fails to meet the terms of a contractual agreement. A country that repudiates its debt faces the threat of sanctions such as loss of access to short-term trade credits, trade sanctions, seizure of assets, etc. In practice, however, the observed punishment does not correspond to what some might think. It may be noted that whereas domestic loans are supported by substantial collateral, the assets that can be appropriated in the event of sovereign country's default are often negligible. International experience suggests that defaulting governments have seldom been punished, either with direct sanctions or with discriminatory denial of credit. Countries try to avoid default not because of the collateral damage associated with default but because of the country's reputation. A country's incentive to make loan repayments is to preserve its future access to international credit and trade. Moreover, defaulting on sovereign debt may undermine the country's capacity to obtain beneficial deals in multilateral organizations. A default thus can have lasting effects on the country's growth, trade and the financial sector.

Why do then countries default? Studies distinguish three different causes: (a) liquidity problem (only a cash flow problem); (b) sustainability problem (the country may never be able to service its debt out of its own resources); and (c) unwillingness to pay (a country decides to stop paying it well before it is insolvent). Ultimately the decision of defaulting however, resides in the political sphere. The cheerful celebration of the December 2001 Argentine default by its Congress certainly suggests that losses for the defaulter were not big enough. Some studies indeed show that the welfare effects of the default are unambiguous: on the one hand there are output contractions and financial crises; on the other hand it alleviates the fiscal situation because debt payment falls. Why do, then, markets lend to countries that defaulted? An explanation is found in the procyclical nature of capital markets that lent vast sums to emerging markets in boom periods (associated with low returns in industrialized countries). In fact, it may be argued that lenders are paid accordingly for the risk they take. However, it is this same process that produces “sudden stops” in borrowing countries, and that triggers default episodes. Sometimes there is “excusable default” defined as a default triggered by bad shocks. In such a case, both creditors and debtors have incentives to renegotiate, and it is optimal to have a debt relief (or partial default) than a total disruption of debt. The incentives of lenders and borrowers to reschedule or restructure debt obligations are quite different. The incentive for lenders is to recover as much possible value of defaulted debt (provided that the penalty, in terms of seizure of assets, is much smaller than the amount defaulted). The incentive from the borrowers' view point is to minimize the output and other economic costs of a default.

Historical evidence suggests that countries that have defaulted on their external debts have done so repeatedly. Including the recent episode, Argentina has defaulted 5 times since 1824. This is not an exclusive characteristic of Argentina provided that other countries in the region have defaulted on a similar number of occasions. For instance, Brazil and Colombia have defaulted 7 times while Venezuela 9 times. If this historical account tells anything is that defaulting is not new. However, the latest Argentine's default of 2001 has some distinctive characteristic that puts it in the Guiness Book of World Records of the default history: it was the largest in the history of international bonds with over $82 billion. Argentine Debt Default Background: During most part of the early 1990s, Argentina outperformed most other countries in Latin America in terms of economic growth. However, in the late 1990s, due to the decision to peg its currency to the U.S.Dollar, pro-cyclical fiscal policies and extensive foreign borrowing left Argentine unable to deal with a number of global economic shocks. This ultimately led to the outburst of a severe currency, sovereign debt and banking crises. To understand the causes of crises, few important background events are in order. As government spending could not be matched by taxation and financial market borrowing, the authorities became dependent on inflation to finance the rising deficits (known as inflation tax, seigniorage). This led to a sharp rise in inflation (hyperinflation). By 1989, inflation reached to an annual rate of 3,080 %. Political support to deal with hyperinflation once-and-for-all grew.

The government introduced radical economic reforms in line with the dictate of the Washington Consensus. Beside others, the reforms included the privatization of state-owned enterprises, deregulation of the economy, reduction in trade restrictions, etc. With the implementation of these reforms, Argentina won great admiration from all international finance institutions, especially from the IMF. On the Wall Street, Argentina had become one of the most favourite emerging market; the country was able to borrow relatively cheap in U.S. Dollars and thus became the biggest issuer of emerging markets debt in the late 1990s. This made the country increasingly dependent on foreign capital. Earlier in 1991, to tackle hyperinflation, Argentina also introduced a Currency Board (the so-called Convertibilidad). The Convertibilidad acted like a monetary authority, which was required to maintain a fixed exchange rate with a foreign currency. This policy objective required the conventional objectives of the Central Bank to be subordinated to the exchange rate target. Among its major features were; (1) the introduction of a new currency, the peso (which amounted 10,000 Australes), which was set at an exchange rate of one peso to one U.S. dollar, and which was perfectly convertible and; (2) a new law was introduced, which permitted the Central Bank to issue new pesos only against new foreign exchange reserves. The Convertibilidad had many aspects of a dollarization: contracts made in dollars acquired the same status as those made in the local currency (including bank deposits and credits).

The Convertibilidad laid the foundation for (temporary) exchange rate stabilization. Argentines could now freely convert their pesos into dollars. Since then bank deposits and loans in dollar became widespread. After the implementation of these reforms, the Argentina economy entered a period of economic growth between 1991 and 1997. Under the Convertibilidad regime – inflation came to an end, there was an initial period of high growth rates, and there was a substantial surge in capital inflows. This new regime did not prohibit the state from having budget deficits. However, such deficits could not be financed by the Central Bank, but only through borrowing. Much of the latter consisted of foreign borrowing. The public sector continued to be in deficit due to: (1) the payments of the debt services, which grew from approximately 4% of the GDP around 1993 to more than 10% by the end of the decade and; (2) the need to finance the social security system with pesos, as most of the young taxpayers had transferred to the private system. In 1994, the Argentine government partially privatized the public pay-as-you-go social security system that had been in existence since 1967. This decision was strongly promoted and supported by the World Bank and the IMF and had a major impact on Argentina's fiscal accounts. The loss of revenue, plus accumulated interest costs, amounted to nearly the entire government budget deficit in 2001. As a side-effect of the Convertibilidad, the Argentine economy was especially vulnerable to foreign crises. The outbreak of currency crises in Asia, Russia and Brazil in 1997 caused capital to flow out and the Brazilian devaluation made the trade deficit worse. As Dollars were flowing out of the Currency Board, the decline of the Dollar reserves reduced the money supply and raised interest rates. Moreover, the currency crises raised the cost of borrowing for emerging markets. Brazilian devaluation reduced the competitiveness of Argentine producers. Meanwhile, the prices of Argentina's agricultural export products fell. All this led to a sharp reduction in exports, which caused sharp rise in current account deficit that pushed the country into recession.

The growth rate of Argentina's GDP began to slow down in 1998 and in 1999 it began to experience a negative growth rate, which continued until 2003. The most pronounced decline occurred in 2001 and 2002, when the country experienced the collapse of the Convertibilidad system. This decline in growth also produced dramatic increases in poverty. For instance, unemployment grew from 13.2% in 1998 to 21.5% in 2002; the proportion of the population living below the poverty line grew from 35.9% in 1998 to 57.5% in 2002. Moreover, the rate of investment, which was already declining in the late 1990s, took a plunge from 1999 on, dropping from 19.1 % of GDP to 11.3 % in 2002. By the time of De la Rua's government (December 1999 to December 2001), there was a consensus among economists that devaluation was imperative. Policymakers hesitated due to devaluation's perceived financial and political risks involved and the De la Rua's government adhered to the view that the main problem was not the exchange rate overvaluation but fiscal deficit. This view led the government to have a tight fiscal policy with the expectation that fiscal adjustment would entail lower risk premiums and consequently interest rates, which in turn would reduce the debt service payments, one of the principal components of the public expenditure. However, these policies reinforced the recessionary trend and undermined market confidence in the viability of the Convertibilidad.

Argentina kept on maintaining its peg with U.S. Dollar, which left it unable to respond to the growing economic problems, as it could not apply monetary policy under fixed exchange rate regime. In fact, when U.S. Dollar appreciated (between 2000 and 2002), its highest level in 15 years, the peso became overvalued. Moreover, the exchange rate peg was not supported by nominal price and wage flexibility which further reduced Argentina's instruments to deal with currency overvaluation and decreased the credibility of the exchange rate regime. As foreign investors lost their confidence in the Argentina economy, it had to face increase in cost of borrowing. Consequently, the country virtually lost its access to the international financial markets in July 2001. By the second half of 2001, the public began to fear the possibility of devaluation and there was increasing speculation against the peso. The situation was worsened by a unique feature of the Convertibilidad. In particular, local banks were able to offer deposits in foreign currency to the general public, and the Central Bank guaranteed that these were secured. Therefore, the peso speculation converted into a bank run, as the public withdrew their savings from foreign based accounts into cash.

In order to sustain the Convertibilidad, the government established severe restrictions on capital movements and cash withdrawals from banks in December 2001. This measure infuriated the general public and produced massive social unrest and political turmoil. To avoid a massive peso withdrawal from the banks the government declared a bank holiday on December 20th, which lasted until January 3rd, 2002. The collapse of the De la Rua's government and the successive governments led to the abandonment of the Convertibilidad. Argentina abandoned its Convertibilidad in January 2002 after a severe recession. To some, this emphasized the fact that the currency boards are not irrevocable, and hence may be abandoned in the face of speculation by foreign exchange traders. However, Argentina's system was not an orthodox currency board, as it did not strictly follow currency board rules – a fact which many see as the true cause of its collapse. They argue that Argentina's monetary system was an inconsistent mixture of currency board and central banking elements. It is also thought that the misunderstanding of the workings of the system by economists and policymakers contributed to the Argentine government's decision to devalue the peso in January 2002. The economy fell deeper into depression before a recovery began later in the year.

The new government of Duhalde (2002-2003) decided to compulsively convert foreign-currency bank deposits into pesos at a rate of 1.4 pesos per dollar when the market rate was 2 and even reached 4 pesos per dollar. Additionally, to avoid a generalized bankruptcy bank credits in dollars were converted at a rate of one-to-one rate. On December 24th the service payments of a significant part of the public debt were suspended (it initially affected $61.8 billion in public bonds and $8 billion in other debt instruments). It did not include debt contracted with multilateral institutions (such as the IMF, the World Bank and the Inter-American Development Bank) of about $32.4 billion and guaranteed loans of $42.3 billion. This turned out to be the largest default in Latin American economic history, as the foreign private debt amounted to $ 82 billion out of $ 153 billion. Besides, the extra premium paid by Argentine bonds significantly influenced the Menem (1989-1999) and De la Rua's governments' decisions. As financial markets disbelieved the country's capacity to repay its foreign debt, those governments introduced tighter fiscal policies. However, following the contractionary policies, markets offered a higher discount on those bonds, which in fact worsened the country's financial situation. As expected, the default followed. How did then the 2001-2002 Argentinean default impact it?

• Immediate Sanctions: The value of Argentine's foreign assets was very small compared to its foreign debt. Threat of sanctions and seizure of assets occurred only rarely. Some of its bondholders tried to take legal actions in the courts of New York to attach Argentinean Central Bank funds in the New York Federal Reserve. However, it proved difficult for them to convince the courts. The latter held that since Argentinean funds belonged to Argentina's Central Bank, which was considered an entity separate from the Argentinean government, the claims had to be denied.

• Future Sanctions: Another type of sanction is the loss of access to international credit. It may be noted that the amount of credit declined dramatically in 2001 and reached a low point in 2005 (there is no information for 2002 to 2004 because the country was in total default and there were no financial operations). Credit began to flow in again in 2005 and by 2006 reaching the levels of 1994-95. Thus, these types of sanctions were of short durations.

Interestingly, net foreign credit to Argentina began to decline before the default. Net foreign portfolio investment dropped from U.S$ 11.5 billion in 1998 to U.S$ 8.7 billion in 1999 and to U.S$ 6.8 billion in 2000. Although, the decline in 2002 can be interpreted as reflecting the default, this is not the case of the previous years. Thus, the decline in the inflow of portfolio investment cannot be solely blamed in the default, but rather on the deterioration of the economic situation and especially the increased evidence of the lack of sustainability of the Convertibilidad. It must be underscored that the end of the Convertibilidad entirely changes the dependence of Argentina on foreign capital. During the 1990s, the emission of debt was mainly associated with the necessity of acquiring foreign reserves to maintain the currency board and the payment of interest. After 2002, both conditions disappeared, and this gave the Argentine government more room to negotiate.

• Immediate Effects: Aerolíneas Argentinas was one of the most affected Argentine companies, cancelling all international flights for various days in 2002. The airline came close to bankruptcy, but survived. Several thousand newly homeless and jobless Argentines found work as cartoneros, or cardboard collectors. An estimate in 2003 put the number of people scavenging the streets for cardboard to sell to recycling plants at 30,000 to 40,000 people. Such desperate measures were common given the unemployment rate of nearly 25%.

Argentine agricultural products were rejected in some international markets, for fear they might arrive damaged by the chaos. The United States Department of Agriculture put restrictions on Argentine food and drug exports.

• Impact on Growth and Trade: The default had little impact on either growth or trade. The dramatic decline of growth in the years 2001-02 was a direct consequence of the collapse of the currency board, and it can be claimed that the default was the result of the crisis rather than the cause of it. The default may not be separated from the deep economic recession and regime's collapse, and therefore its specific contribution may be difficult to quantify.

In addition, the resumption of spectacular rates of growth in 2003 had little to do with the default. As far as trade is concerned, exports stayed at about the same level in the years 1997-2002, while dramatically rising in the years 2003-2006. As far as imports are concerned, their decline began in 1998, plunging in 2002, but recovered rapidly after 2003. Import declines cannot be explained by a lack of credit related to the default, but rather by the dramatic decline of the GDP, the decline of investments and the spurt in import prices due to the devaluation of the currency.

• Impact on the Banking Sector: The contraction of the economy in 1998 resulted in rising non-performing loans. The January 2002 economic reforms, including the abandoning of the Convertibility Board, the pesofication of bank deposits and loans at two different exchange rates caused a wave of defaults and liquidity problems for companies. The default rate of rated issuers was as high as 60%. The apparent solid position of the banking sector could not prevent the sector, including both domestic and foreign banks, from being affected by the crisis too. Amongst others, Argentina's largest privately owned bank, Banco Galicia, and several foreign banks such as the Bank of America, CitiGroup, FleetBoston and J.P. Morgan Chase & Co suffered heavy losses.

• Foreign Direct Investment (FDI): The default did not reduce FDI, which was a feared consequence. Even in the worse time of the crisis, that is 2002, FDI, though substantially lower, never disappeared. Also, the collapse of the financial system should certainly not be attributed to the default but to the non-sustainability of the Convertibilidad. The internal financial system recovered very fast after the new macroeconomic equilibrium was put into place.

• Recovery from Crisis: Negotiations with bondholders, which began in 2002, dragged on until June 2005, when President Kirchner made an offer which consisted of the exchange of old bonds for new ones. The new bonds amounted to 25% of the value of the old debt. Kirchner made it clear that this offer was not negotiable and he gave bondholders one month to accept or reject the offer.

Within that time 76% of the bondholders accepted the offer. The remaining 24% were not repaid and kept on trying to regain their investment through foreign legal actions. The unilateral offer was indirectly supported by other actors' inaction and lack of initiative, together with extraordinarily good international conditions. Both the IMF and developed countries' governments adopted a laissez-faire approach to the sovereign crisis resolution. Moreover, the low interest rates in the United States, and the narrowing of emerging bond spreads improved the conditions of the offer. The government also took for granted the position of local financial investors (mostly retirement and pension administrators who were obliged to invest a certain proportion of their capital in public bonds), which provided a “floor of acceptance” of about 30%. The default itself eliminated one of the principal components of the public deficit, that is, the need to pay huge sums as interest on the debt, and by 2002 the prices of the Argentinean exports were rising dramatically.

Argentina's recovery from the economic crises was indeed due, mainly, to the improvement in the trade balance. It went from being negative in the late 1990s to a surplus in 2000, and this surplus rose dramatically in the subsequent years. The surplus was the result of two factors: (i) the country's exports, which hardly ever declined, rose substantially, as a result of both a strong world demand for the country's products, and also the substantial devaluation of the peso; and (ii) there was a dramatic decline of imports, due to both the rise of poverty levels and the decline of investments. Overall the collapse of the Argentine's financial system did not have any significant effect on international trade. The fact that there were no disruptions after the default may be explained by the fact that Argentine's exports were concentrated on traditional agricultural markets and primary goods with well-established financial services and prices on the rise, or tied to the Mercosur with politically managed quotas. The strong growth of exports also strengthened the finances of the government, as the major export items were taxed. In fact, the government's budget had a surplus from 2003 on. However, as in the case of government revenues, the level of expenditures also expanded, which, in turn, contributed to economic expansion.

The devaluation of the currency after loan default did not produce an immediate rise in the level of prices, mostly due to the existing high unemployment rate and to the freeze of public utilities' prices and other price controls introduced by the Duhalde and (mainly) Kirchner (2003-2007) governments. Economic recovery was attributed to the achievement of a new macroeconomic equilibrium. Those authors stress that the policies implemented were different from those common in the 1990s. In particular the new governments imposed new exchange rules that compelled exporters to liquidate dollars in the local market and imposed capital controls. In fact these measures were so successful that the Central Bank was compelled to absorb the excess of foreign currency to avoid the appreciation of the peso.

• Lessons for Emerging Economies: Argentina crises were due, mainly, to internal problems: the lack of an internal adjustment to accompany the Convertibilidad, which led to an unsustainable external debt situation. The default was a “way out” and Argentina got away with it due to the favourable external conditions, leading to huge trade surpluses, which led to growth and the growth, in turn, led to a softening of the country's bad reputation in global financial markets. The default thus could certainly not have been declared at a better time. Also, the fact that Argentina was smart enough not to default with the multilateral institutions was crucial because this line of credit remained open and the Argentine government made the announcement regarding the debt restructuring.

• Was the Argentina default really necessary? Evidence shows that default dramatically alleviated the government's burden, as debt servicing as a proportion of total government expenditures declined to 9.2% in 2004. However, the servicing of the debt might have been quite manageable in an expansionary period.

The fact that the default was done in a climate of political turmoil, mostly as a reaction to the failure of the policies implemented in the previous decade showed that the default was an immediate necessity rather than an unwillingness to recognize the debt. It was celebrated by the Congress as a political triumph with the expectation that it was necessary to avoid further macroeconomic restrictions. In a framework of fiscal, financial and political crisis, defaulting on foreign creditors was a short-term fiscal alleviation whose consequences would be the responsibility of an unknown future government.

All in all, two important points need to be made that are special features of the Argentine case. First, Argentina faced several favourable conditions in the aftermath of the 2002 economic crisis. The abandonment of the Convertibilidad alleviated the government's dependence on foreign capital and placed the country on a positive growth path that lasted several years. Moreover, the country's terms of trade entered in a favourable phase, which significantly contributed to the economic growth. Second, the default was declared concomitantly with a catastrophic economic, political and social crisis reduced its significance and it made multilateral institutions more sympathetic to the Argentine government debt restructuring process. Many analysts thought default would lead Argentina into a long period of stagnation and would keep it outside the world's financial markets for a long period of time. This did not occur! Argentina's experience indeed corroborates the historical fact that many, if not all, defaulters “get away with it.”

Argentina default was caused by the undesirable convergence of several economic events: a hard currency peg, currency overvaluation, economic rigidities, inappropriate fiscal policy, external shocks, large scale foreign currency borrowing followed by a “sudden stop” in capital inflows and continuing support of IMF played an important role in the course of crises. This together with the political and social turmoil that accompanied the events made the Argentine crisis one of the most severe emerging market crises in history. As world economic growth in the early 2000s was strong, Argentine producers benefited from the strong depreciation of its currency. The Argentine economy was able to recover rather quickly. Nevertheless, deep structural reforms were never implemented.

The writer is an HEC Foreign Professor and presently on the faculty of NUST Business School, Islamabad. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Written By: Amir Zia

A leading English-language monthly magazine carried Pakistan's founding father Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah's caricature on the cover of its February issue, showing him espousing a beard instead of the familiar clean-shaven face we all know and love. The shocking cover attempted to symbolize efforts made by handful of extremists and violent non-state actors to distort and tarnish our revered leader's vision of a prosperous, moderate and progressive Pakistan.

The alteration of Quaid-i-Azam's image ignited some intense debate on the social media and concerned circles, but perhaps it's a topic for a different forum where values and ethics of journalism are under the microscope. In the larger scheme of things, the cover is just another small manifestation of the ideological chasms in our society that remains caught in the vortex of unabated incidents of terrorism and violence for the past many years. The vital question, however, is whether these ideological differences have seeped into the hearts and minds of majority of Pakistanis or confined to the small and organized minority, holding our entire country hostage to their extremist views? What are the aspirations and dreams of majority of Pakistanis, who are proud of their Muslim identity and want to carry on with their lives holding both modernity and tradition hand-in-hand? Equally important are Pakistani Christians, Parsis, Hindus and other religious groups that have as much stake in the country as Pakistani Muslims. As a whole, this Pakistani majority today is pitted against the organised and violent parochial forces, which stand against the tide of times and want to push the country into strife and discord on narrow sectarian and religious lines and international isolation. This is more or less a similar challenge Sir Syed Ahmed Khan faced when he tried to introduce modern education and rational thinking among Muslims following the demise of Mughal Empire in the subcontinent in the 19th century. This was the challenge which Sir Allama Muhammad Iqbal had to confront when he wrote “The Reconstruction of Religious Thought in Islam” and tried to mobilize and rejuvenate Muslims through his splendid Urdu and Persian poetry. And this was the monumental task Quaid-i-Azam found at hand when he was tirelessly leading the struggle for an Independent homeland to ensure the political and economic rights of the South Asian Muslims.

All these icons of our freedom struggle were rejected, ridiculed, attacked and even branded “infidels” by the small bands of fundamentalists, who remained opposed to the very idea of Pakistan. But the Muslim masses rejected this fundamentalist minority and followed the modern and moderate Muslim leaders of their times. Unfortunately today again in the sacred name of Islam, heirs of the same dark anti-Pakistan forces are trying to shake the foundations of the world's lone nuclear-armed Muslim state. Ideologically, this internal enemy is no different than what the founding fathers of this nation were pitted against. It is the proverbial tussle – tolerance versus intolerance, moderation versus extremism, order versus disorder, progress versus regression and true Islam versus the narrow-minded religious beliefs flaunted by the misguided ones.

Leaders of the Pakistan Movement overcame this challenge with flying colours. The mark of their achievement is Pakistan itself. Now it is up to this generation to keep our crescent and star studded flag fluttering high when it is being attacked by the similar internal, but a more lethal enemy. A small, fringe minority of Al Qaeda-infected extremists have imposed a deadly war on Pakistan, its key state institutions, including the armed forces, and the people. To justify all their barbaric killings and cowardly acts of terrorism, they present a hotchpotch ideology which is an amalgamation of a highly flawed interpretation of Islam, a confrontationist worldview and regional and global political ambitions presented in the garb of religion. The bitter fact is that these forces are incompatible with the modern age and times. Some of the fundamentalist and rightwing parties that historically fared poorly in electoral politics and represent the same forces opposed to the creation of Pakistan have emerged as their main apologist and cheer-leaders. They are trying to confuse the issue of terrorism and extremist violence in Pakistan by linking it to the US/NATO presence in Afghanistan and opposing the legitimate efforts by the state to establish writ on its territory. The heart of the conflict remains that militants and their supporters are trying to undermine the state and its institutions, establish a state within state, impose a controversial ideology that has few takers in the country and use our territory for global terrorism.

Can any modern state allow this? The answer is a firm 'no.' The state institutions have the national duty and international responsibility to ensure that Pakistani territory is not being used by any group of non-state actors to foment terrorism within the country or across the globe. Let there be no ambiguity on this count. One silver-lining in this tussle remains that all the extremist forces and their supporters, even if put together, do not represent the real Pakistan and the aspirations and dreams of majority of Pakistanis, who want peace, education, economic development, order and rule of the law. A close scrutiny of these violent and radical religious forces shows that they are not a cohesive and integrated ideological force as they might appear or want us to believe. They suffer from inherent contradictions in their narrative, unbridgeable theological differences and remain divided because of their narrow vested interests. This means that they may have the near to mid-term ability to continue/carry on their deadly acts in the absence of a decisive action against them, but can never emerge as a force that can bring down the state, let alone ambitions to fulfil their pipe-dream of creating a new system for better or for worse.

After the withdrawal of the former Soviet Union's forces from Afghanistan, the Afghan insurgents brandishing more or less similar ideology resorted to infighting as they miserably failed to create a system for peace and stability in their war-ravaged country. They could not raise themselves above the level of mere proxies against the backdrop of complex great game being played among the regional and global forces to emerge as a unifying force in their country. The few years of the Afghan Taliban rule (1996-2001) was mainly at the back of foreign support, but it too failed to bring unity and peace in Afghanistan. Luckily, Pakistan, despite its set of some grave problem and challenges, is not Afghanistan. As a state, Pakistan's socio-economic structure and strong institutions – in which the armed forces remain the mainstay – are far more advanced and strong than its landlocked neighbour. The drag of the archaic feudal and tribal pockets gets offset by Pakistan's large urban-base, vibrant trade, commerce and industry, mid-level farmers and strong educated middle and lower middle classes.

Whatever the prophets of doom might say, we as a nation have the capacity and ability to overcome the challenge posed by the violent extremist forces. Whenever our armed forces have been called into action against militants – responsible for more than 50,000 deaths of our civilians and security personnel – over the last 12 years or so, they have managed to contain and put them on the ropes. Then what is the reason that this challenge continue to stay as a festering wound? One main reason is the absence of a holistic approach, especially since 2008, in confronting these terrorist organisations and smashing their infrastructure. The first and foremost task remains creating a political and ideological narrative that squeezes space for the extremist mindset on which terrorists thrive, breed and multiply. Unfortunately this is one important front where the country is found lacking the most. The onus of producing such a counter-narrative – which celebrates and advances moderation, modernity, tolerance, writ of the state, pluralism of our society and the constitution – lies collectively on the mainstream political parties and the civilian leadership.

They have to show the vision and take initiative in the battle of ideas and create space in which the armed forces can do their job. They need not to reinvent the wheel. The ethos of Pakistani society, our freedom struggle, the values and dreams of the country's founding fathers provide its basis. Our leadership only has to articulate, restate and reassert this vision in clear-cut terms and align it with the modern-day challenges and realities. This vision of a modern, strong and forward-looking Pakistan has no space for religious bigotry, intolerance and sectarian hatred in line with the golden humanitarian tenets of Islam. It rejects any discrimination on the basis of sex, sect and religious or ethnic identity. It calls for universal education. It guarantees to protect the life, honour, liberty and property to each and every citizen of Pakistan. It envisions pro-people governance and the rule of law. Blowing up of schools, hunting down polio vaccinators, killing civilians, bombing markets and places of worship and targeting the armed forces and sensitive defence installations have no justification in the religious or any other ideological narrative. The policy of appeasing terrorists and violent non-state actors has not worked in the past. It is not going to lead us anywhere now. It is time to be a little self-critical. It is time to explore where we have been lacking so far in countering the twin ghost of terrorism and religious extremism. It is time to come on the front-foot and concentrate on winning the battle of ideas first in which the civilian leadership, the civil society and the media all have to play their role and assist the armed forces so that they combat the extremists effectively and decisively. Tied to this battle of ideas are the tasks of reforming the education system, including seminaries, promoting literacy and working for the social and economic uplift of the poor.

The administrative measures such as drying up the funding resources of terrorist groups and rehabilitation programmes for their militants also need to go hand-in-hand in a more comprehensive manner and of course at a larger scale. Effective prosecution of the accused and lifting of the moratorium on death penalty, which is only benefiting convicts involved in heinous crimes and acts of terror, also remain an important aspect in fighting terrorism and extremist mindset. These are some of the vital measures which the leadership needs to support and initiate. The operational aspect of containing and fighting militants is the job of the security forces in which the Pakistan Army remains the vanguard. The security institutions know their job. It is the civilian leaders who need to create conducive atmosphere in which our soldiers can perform their national duty in an effective manner. And the first step to eliminate this internal threat starts with the presence of political will. The will to transform Pakistan according to the dream envisioned by Pakistan's founding fathers. The gauntlet is there. Someone has to accept this challenge.

The writer is an eminent journalist who regularly contributes for media and is Editor of a national daily. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Written By: Maj Gen (Retd) Salim Ullah

The Twin Dispute

The first dispute was related to the North East, created by the British, specifically by Olaf Caroe – the Lawrence of India – in the mid 1930s. He resurrected the idea of annexing a swathe of Chinese territory in the Northeast, in order to give India what in the 19th and early 20th century was called a strategic frontier, a nonsensical concept in the modern age. At any rate, the idea was to occupy a stretch of Chinese territory at the edge of the Tibetan Plateau. The original 1914 attempt failed; it was a fiasco. And the idea was forgotten but resurrected by Olaf Caroe in the mid-1930s, so that India inherited a border dispute with China. It had been going on from the early 1940s when the British began to move into the territory they wished to acquire. And the Chinese government 'complained and complained again' at the British intrusions into what the Chinese regarded as their own territory.

Interestingly, not only Chinese but all international maps showed the international border at an alignment beneath the foothills. That was common ground between London, Delhi, Shillong, Nanking, and Lhasa. All five governments concerned knew the border lay beneath the foothills. But beginning 1940 or thereabouts, the British began moving forward into that territory to acquire what they thought of as a strategic frontier. So that dispute was alive and kicking and it was the first matter to be addressed by Prime Minister-cum-Foreign Minister Nehru when India became independent and he assumed those offices. Nehru made a profound political, diplomatic, psychological mistake. He came to the conclusion that, provided India quickly made good of that new boundary alignment, he could then say to China “Well that's it, that's our boundary, nothing more to discuss about it, it's not open to negotiation, you've got to live with it.” The new maps also revised the boundary in the East so as to include the Himalayan hill crest as the boundary. In some places, this line is a few kilometres north of the McMahon Line.

As for the second dispute, Nehru used that same approach and applied it to the other front of Sino-India territorial impingement, the western sector. He decided, on ambitious advice or self-conceit, that this was not a matter to be discussed with China. The alignment of the Western border was to be ascertained by Indian enquiries into the record, by consideration of India's interests. So he and his advisors came up with an alignment far in advance of anything ever claimed by the British. On July 1, 1954 Nehru issued a directive requiring the maps of India to be revised to show definite boundaries on all frontiers, where they were previously indicated as un-demarcated. See Maps 3 and 4. Interestingly, these new maps also showed the countries of Bhutan and Sikkim as part of India. Nehru made an extraordinary misjudgment and the one that, to quote Neville Maxwell, was to “destroy him and to cost India, China, and indeed the international community dearly.”

K. Subrahmaniam who then served as a deputy secretary in the Ministry of Defence comments that several officers in the Ministry differed with India's interpretation of the border alignment but most chose discretion for fear of censure, much like the rest of senior bureaucracy, both military and civil. “Play safe” remained the order of the day. He laments that Nehru had been fed with myths all along,”….the (eventual) break up of the fourth Indian army division at Kameng in 1962 was such a blow to Jawaharlal Nehru that he probably never really recovered from it….. . a failure which led to a considerable diminution of his image.” Forward Policy

The stage was thus set for open hostilities. The Indian government first used the word 'aggression' against China in 1958 when Indian army found a small Chinese/Tibetan outpost in the middle section of the frontier – Uttar Pradesh [Bara Hoti] – on Indian-claimed territory. In 1959, India embarked upon a provocative 'Forward Policy' in the disputed region. According to James Barnard Calvin of the U.S. Navy War College, “This policy created skirmishes and deteriorating relations between India and China. The aim of the forward policy was to create outposts behind Chinese troops to interdict their supplies, forcing them north of the disputed line. Eventually, there were as many as 60 such outposts established, including 43 north of the McMahon Line, in flagrant violation of even India's claimed line.”

Since the early 1950s, India had begun actively, albeit clandestinely, patrolling the region. It was discovered by troops that at multiple locations, the highest ridges actually lay well north of the McMahon Line. The troops were ordered to occupy the ridge line in the region regardless. Given India's self-assumed interpretation that the 'original intent' of the McMahon Line was to separate the two nations by the highest mountains in the world, in these locations India extended her forward posts northward to the ridges, taking this move to be in line with the 'intent and spirit' of the original border proposal. Indian analysts concede that this was an absurd assumption and the Simla Convention 1914 stated no such intention, latent or otherwise.

As stated earlier, after the Tibetan revolt had been crushed by the People's Liberation Army in a battle at Chamdo in 1950, Lhasa recognized Chinese sovereignty over Tibet in 1951. Exploiting the Tibetan unrest, the Indian Army occupied Tawang, overcoming light armed resistance and expelling its Tibetan administrators. Beginning in 1956, the CIA used this Indian-controlled territory to recruit and train Tibetan guerrillas to fight Chinese troops, with a base nearby in Kalimpong, India. It soon geared up work on a clandestine agenda of regime change in Tibet its favourite pastime. Paradoxically, at this stage Nehru did not look too kindly to the uprising in Tibet. G. Parthasarthi, India's ambassador to China at the time commented that Nehru was 'no friend of the Tibetan cause.’ He found Nehru in agreement with Indian communist leader, SA Dange, who believed that it was the 'masses' which had revolted against the 'feudal landlords' in Tibet. In August 1959, the Chinese Army took an Indian patrol prisoner at Longju, which falls north of the McMahon Line coordinates drawn on the Simla Treaty, signed in 1914. India, however, claimed it to lie directly on the McMahon Line. There was another bloody clash in October 1959 at Kongka Pass in Aksai Chin in which 9 Indian frontier policemen were killed. Recognizing that it was not ready for war, the Indian Army pulled back patrols from disputed areas.

On October 2, 1959 Nikita Khrushchev defended Nehru in a meeting with Mao. Premier Chou would later disclose to Neville Maxwell that the Indian government believed what the Russians told them that China would not retaliate them. The Soviet Union's backing to Nehru as well as the United States' unqualified support boosted India to press on with her forward policy. On 16 October, China protested against Indian incursion on the Thag La Ridge. A few days after Kongka Pass incident, Chinese Prime Minister Chou Enlai proposed each side to withdraw 20 kilometres from a "Line of Actual Control". He defined this line as "the so-called McMahon Line in the east and the line up to which each side exercises actual control in the west." Nehru, persisting with his ascendant attitude, responded with a counter proposal to turn the disputed area into a no man's land. The Chinese border guards displayed surprising restraint that further emboldened the Indian commanders. Thus the line of contact kept moving northward. The 'new conquests' on the field made Nehru even more intransigent

The Whole Truth Sufficient evidence is now available from credible independent as well as Indian sources to suggest that the hype and paranoia created by India about the Chinese 'invasion' was one-sided and malafide. That Nehru had an innate jealousy, if not hatred, for China which is supported by several authentic accounts. Freshly unclassified records reveal B.N. Mullick, India's first Director of the Intelligence Bureau, disclosing what Nehru told him when he first became the director, “India has two enemies, one is Pakistan, the other is China”. The experience of G. Parthasarthi, as quoted above, was not much different. As documented by B G Verghese, an eminent writer presently associated with the Centre for Policy Research New Delhi, in Tibet Sun of 5 October 2012, “G. Parthasarathi met Nehru on the evening of 18 March 1958 prior to his departure for Peking as the new Indian Ambassador to China.” The distinguished Indian diplomat recorded Nehru's briefing in these terms: “So GP, what has the Foreign Office told you? Hindi-Chini-bhai-bhai? Don't you believe it! I don't trust the Chinese one bit. They are a deceitful, opinionated, arrogant and hegemonistic lot. Eternal vigilance should be your watchword. You should send all your telegrams only to me not to the Foreign Office. Also, do not mention a word of this instruction of mine to Krishna (Defence Minister VK Krishna Menon).” This is about the time that India had become aware of the truth about the McMahon Line: that it was forged, never agreed to and far in advance of anything ever claimed by the British.”

And so was the alignment of the western border that, according to objective Indian analysts like Karunakar Gupta and BG Verghese, “lacked any foundation in history, treaty, or practice; an alignment which claimed Aksai Chin.” Chou Enlai visited India in 1960, “begging for an agreement on the McMahon Line”, states Neville Maxwell, author of the authentic India's China War, in an interview with Kai Friese carried by Outlook, India, dated 22 October 2012. This was just about the time when Indian troops were sitting far beyond the McMahon Line, having by-passed the Chinese border posts at several places. China made a “genuinely peaceful proposal”, says Maxwell, “this is our understanding of where the traditional and customary boundary in that sector lies, and we would be very happy to discuss it….We are sure we will find an alignment perfectly acceptable to both of us.” This is an approach that China had applied with every one of her neighbours and had a dozen mutually satisfactory boundary agreements to show for it, including the Sino-Soviet agreement. But because of the expansionist Indian claim, essentially on Aksai Chin, “a fanciful, irredentist claim to territory that had nothing to do with India, boundary settlement became impossible (emphasis added).” During the Commonwealth Prime Ministers’ Conference in London held in September, 1962, Harold Macmillan advised Nehru to back off and seek a negotiated settlement. He also passed on some records including maps from the India Office Library showing the origin of India-China boundary. But, alas, the die had been cast.

(To be Continued….)
The writer is a visiting faculty at the NDU, Islamabad, a former DG ISPR and a former diplomat. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Written By: Ahmed Quraishi

The Indian military is facing a moment where it has to choose between fighting the debilitating effects of a slow economy after 2011 versus the pursuit of a largely Pakistan-specific military buildup. With the slowest GDP (3.2% in 2012 and less than 5% in 2013) in a decade, India's military managers face tough choices. They have to balance a weak Indian rupee with the payment of salaries and pensions and the procurement of enough weapons to project power against neighbours, especially Pakistan and China.

The choices are tough for the country's financial managers as well. The government led by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, a reformer, has chosen to give priority to military expenditure over the more pressing task of jumpstarting the Indian economy. Most of the new military budget allocations go to satisfy Indian military's appetite for projection of power in the immediate neighbourhood outside national borders. India does not face any immediate threat from any neighbour beyond border and water disputes with Pakistan and China that can be resolved through talks. But New Delhi has all but closed that door with Pakistan and is not showing any particular urgency to resolve disputes with China. To be fair, Islamabad, New Delhi and Beijing have increased their military budgets recently with varying proportions. Notwithstanding, Indian jump on the defence budget ladder is too big, too high and threatening to the regional countries. In Pakistan's case, the fresh allocations are closely linked to fight a domestic terror threat inspired by the mismanaged U.S.- and NATO-led war in Afghanistan. In China's case, Beijing's military preparedness is more focused on the situation in East China Sea, transnational terror threats to its western borders, and militarization of the Indian and Pacific oceans. In India's case, predictions about a Chinese threat are exaggerated and are often linked to United States' policy of encirclement of China, a policy that India need not subscribe to. On February 17, 2014 Indian Finance Minister P. Chidambaram announced a 10% increase in India's defence budget, taking it to a staggering $36.3 billion. The new allocations are temporary and could be changed by the new government after the general elections in May. The new allocations include an increase of 3.3% for new weapon purchases and a rise in the pensions of nearly three million retired military personnel who were left out in an earlier increase in 2006.

This is a very interesting development for India watchers. Less than four months to a new government after elections in May, the last major move by the outgoing government of Prime Minister Singh is to bolster defence expenditure. This move says a lot about India's immediate priorities. Many would argue this is not the best of times for India to indulge in unnecessary and cosmetic defence buildup not justified by any immediate threat. Moreover, such militarization could have been ignored by neighbours had India made progress in resolving major disputes. But India is not engaging any of its neighbours at the moment in tension-reduction steps, like lowering non-tarrif barriers to trade in Pakistan's case, for example, or the resolution of smaller disputes like Siachen and Sir Creek.

In Kashmir, tensions have risen again after a recently conducted cricket match between Pakistani and Indian teams resulted in harassment and expulsion of Kashmiri students studying at Indian universities. The students are accused of cheering for the Pakistani team and have been charged with treason. Most of the times, Indians have successfully beguiled the world and concealed their true face with clichés like non-violence, largest democracy and peaceful yoga, but such like events exposed true ugly face of narrow-minded Hindu chauvinism. The world at large, and Pakistanis in particular must anticipate the dangers of rising Hindu extremism. It is not so peaceful in the land of non-violence. Under these circumstances, India's pursuit of militarization stokes mistrust. The Indian militarization drive, including the purchase of nuclear-powered submarines, spy drones, and aircraft carriers continues unabated despite the country's rising economic troubles.

India has disappointed domestic and international investors with less than 5% growth rate in seven consecutive quarters up to December 2013. The Indian rupee has lost more than 10% of its value to U.S. dollar, and Foreign Direct Investment has slumped considerably. In November, the Standard & Poor's warned that India's rating could be downgraded if its economy was not back on track after the May election. The prospects for the immediate future remain bleak. The laundry list that leads to pessimism is long:

• Turmoil and instability in Indian politics.

• The possibility that India might have a new Prime Minister after the general elections accused of genocide.

• The gang-rape epidemic that has dented tourism and impacted the country's reputation.

• Refusal to resolve serious disputes with Pakistan.

• Inability to reduce tensions inside Indian-occupied Kashmir.

• The country's stubborn attitude in trade negotiations with the United States and the European Union.

To be sure, the economic woes have slowed down the feverish Indian weapons procurement programme. The 3.3% increase for weapons purchases this year is dwarfed by last year's 9% hike.

Besides a slowing economy, there are other reasons for this year's humbled budgetary allocations for new arms. For example, the Indian military was criticized domestically and embarrassed internationally with an increase in the number of accidents affecting the newly acquired nuclear-armed submarines. The latest accident occurred on February 25, 2014, when a Russian-made submarine, renamed INS Sindhuratna, caught fire at sea and two officers were killed. According to a report titled, ‘Frequent Accidents in Indian Navy' by Osman Khan in The News International on March, 4, 2014, “This has been the 10th accident involving Indian Naval platforms, three out of them being submarines in the last seven months. In August last year, another Indian submarine of the same type, the INS Sindhurakshak, sank alongside while carrying out pre-sea departure checks or extended deployment probably on the Pakistani coast.”

Critics in the Indian media chastised the military for rushing to buy nuclear-armed submarines without sufficient parallel training in operation and maintenance. India is deploying its new submarines along important international trade and oil shipment sea routes. A large part of this Indian Naval power projection is happening close to Pakistani seas. The possibility of an accident involving an Indian-run nuclear submarine in the Indian Ocean, Bay of Bengal and near the Arabian Sea is high. India's ambitious Mars probe is another military-led project that has attracted criticism inside and outside the country, mainly for demonstrating lopsided priorities in a country that remains home to world's largest concentration for poverty and health issues. All of these developments could have played a role in India's decision to lower its budget for new weapons purchases even as it jacks up the defence budget to pay for salaries and pensions of servicemen and offset the cost of a devalued rupee and a slowing economy. But the question remains: Will India give priority to its economy, poverty alleviation and social issues over an ambitious weapons procurement programme and power projection? The jury is still out on this.

Ahmed Quraishi is a senior research fellow at Project for Pakistan In 21st Century, an independent think-tank based in Islamabad. He can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Written By: Didier Chaudet

Were India and Israel supposed to be friends? Not necessarily, when one looks at history. It is, perhaps, forgotten today that New Delhi had voted against the creation of Israel at the UN in 1947. Still in the United Nations' General Assembly, it voted for ‘Resolution-3379’, defining Zionism as racism. This position was rooted in the Congress' vision of India as a country defined by non-alignment in the Cold War, and by the natural sympathy a former colonized country could have towards the people defending its rights on its land. But Israeli diplomacy had never assimilated India as a hardcore enemy, as there was no such strong expression in this country, and as its position was clearly seen not only as moral, but also as political. It was clear that the pro-Arab and anti-Israeli position defended by the Congress and the Indian diplomacy were thought as a way to counter Pakistan and any possible feeling of a natural mutual solidarity between Islamabad and the Arab world.

Understanding those reasons, Tel Aviv tried to win it over by offering some clandestine support during its war in 1962 against China, but also during the conflict with Pakistan in 1965. Still the Cold War was strongly defining the diplomatic choices of each state, making a pro-Arab continuity in Indian foreign policy, the most logical one at the time. It changed once the USSR fell: at this period India suddenly lost its most important ally. The international shock that was the end of the Cold War helped redefined alliances. It was easy to do for India for several reasons. First, it was tempted by an economically liberal policy already at that time. Second, there was a general deception about the pro-Arab diplomacy in the Indian elites: in terms of trade, it was not as fruitful as they had wished, except on energy issues; besides, Arab investments in India have been negligible; and politically, New Delhi was not able to obtain from its Muslim allies, a strictly pro-India position on Kashmir. Last but not the least, the bitter memory of India being ejected of the OIC Summit in 1969 (after having been officially invited) was just one example of the fact that politically, a strong relationship with the Arab and Muslim world was not giving to India all that it could, especially on its opposition to Pakistan.

Besides the desire for economic and diplomatic gains, it is clear that this diplomatic evolution towards stronger links between the Hebrew State and India has been inspired, at first, on New Delhi's side, by a political ideology promoting the idea of “Clash of Civilizations”. As expressed very openly by the “Vishwa Hindu Parishad” (the World Hindu Forum, VHP) after 9/11: “Hindus have been waging a relentless war against Islamic terrorism for the past 1,000 years but it is only now that the world has come to realize, the threat Islamic terrorism poses to the forces of peace.” The “Bharatiya Janata Party” (BJP) has also promoted this vision of the world, and was even doing so before 2001. It explains why, after coming to power in 1998, it has been the one advocating strong bilateral relations with Israel. Its Minister of External Relations at the time, Jaswant Singh, during an official visit to Israel in 1998, made this ideological position clear when he said that the way Congress Party was dealing with India's foreign policy was linked to the “domestic politics of the Muslim vote bank”. Of course, it would be a mistake to think that such position is the point of view of all the Indian elites: such a declaration was strongly criticized by the Congress and the other parties in the opposition. But more importantly, it would be a mistake to imagine that ideology alone has led to such a diplomatic change. In this new, post-Cold War relationship, one should focus on the practical side of the India-Israel relationship to understand why it is here to stay: India has been interested in Israel because of its military technology, and because it wanted to build a stronger relationship with the US, again to have access to military and nuclear technology. To follow the former Indian policy towards the Palestinians would have created tensions with the White House that could have made such a rapprochement difficult. As for the Israeli diplomacy, it saw in India the backing of an important country, and a great market for its military equipment. This last part is particularly relevant, as this Israeli industry needs to export at least 70% of its production to stay economically viable. More importantly, creating links with India could mean putting the India-Iran relationship at risk, isolating Tehran, even more the only real opponent to Israeli policies left in the Middle East.

When one looks at the diplomatic situation nowadays, it is without question that the relationship between India and Israel is extremely strong: trade volume between Israel and India has reached $6 billion for the period 2012-13; public diplomacy and people-to-people relations are also satisfactory now for those two states. A poll made at the end of the decade 2000 showed it clearly: there is an Indian popular support for Israel, more important than the ones supporting in the US, in Russia, or in China (56%, 52%, and 48% respectively, against 58% in India). One can question the results of such polls, but it is without question that the links between the two countries, not only between states but also even among people, are very important. And Israelis have made sure to target with public diplomacy, not only the Hindu majority but also the Muslim minority in India. For example in 2007, a visit of prominent Indian Muslim leaders to Israel was organized, following the visit of a group of Rabbis to India. Israeli public diplomacy seems to have reached its objective as it saw Maulana Jamil Ilyasi, president of the ‘All India Organization of Imams and Mosques’, calling for Pakistan to establish official relations with Israel during this visit.

But more than on diplomatic and economic grounds, the bilateral relationship is strong because of military-related issues. Israel sells around $1 to 2 billion worth of military merchandise to India every year. Once arriving in power, the Congress party did not stop or reduce the importance of the India-Israel relationship: on the contrary it deepened such relationship once the BJP lost power, and it is partly due to the Indian interest for Israeli weaponry. But of course, such particular trade is not only about money, not even only defence, but also about politics and diplomacy. The best example of such fact is the sale of the Phalcon Airborne Early-Warning and Command and Control Systems, in 2004. A few years earlier, the US had stopped a similar sale from Israel to China. But it had nothing to say against this technology transfer worth around $1 billion at the time. Such attitude was a clear sign that India was considered as a true ally of America for this beginning of 21st century. Trade related to defence industries is also the best way to obtain cooperation of a state against an enemy. An example of such fact was given in 2009: in April, India launched an all-seeing all-weather Israeli-made satellite, to spy the borders with Pakistan and China. It is difficult to get documents proving a correlation, but it seems that part of the deal for this satellite was for India to launch the same spy satellite for Israel in January of the same year to spy Iran. Hence the attraction of Israeli military technology was strong enough for India to downgrade its historical relationship with Iran. And Israeli importance on Indian military affairs will not dissipate any time soon: indeed at the end of 2013, it was said that Israel will work with India's ‘Defence Research and Development Organization’ (DRDO) in producing high-tech systems for the Indian Army, related to its F-INSAS (Futuristic Infantry Soldier As a System) programme. Such market alone is worth $3 billion.

Does it mean that one could talk about an “alliance” here, the way this word was used in the 20th century? It is a mutually beneficial relationship, but it does not mean that Israel and India are blindly following one another. It appears clearly that even after 1998, some Indian officials made it clear to Arab diplomatic visitors that even if New Delhi is now a friend of Israel, it does not make it an enemy of the Arab world. How could it be? After all, India is strongly dependent on Arab and Muslim nations for its energy needs. New Delhi is particularly close to Saudi Arabia: this country is its largest supplier of crude oil (one-fifth of its imports for 2012-13), and trust between these two nations is strong enough for them to have signed a ‘Memorandum of Understanding on Defence Cooperation’ on the 26 February 2014. Such MoU should not be taken lightly, and is definitely not seen this way by the Israelis: this defence cooperation pact will allow exchanges of information, military training and education, as well as cooperation in different areas proving that New Delhi and Riyad are not in a “strategic relationship”, as it was decided during Dr Singh’s visit to Saudi Arabia in 2010. Besides, the Muslim world, and most importantly the Arabic peninsula, is employing no less than 6 million Indians (2.88 in Saudi Arabia alone). And on the side of the Arab and Muslim world, there is also the desire to keep good relations despite the India-Israel relationship. If the OIC has criticized India for the situation in Kashmir, bilateral relationship between numerous Arab and Muslim states and India are rather good. An example of this fact was the reappearance of the proposal to offer India to join the OIC, made by a Qatari diplomat, during the 2003 summit of such organization. Such proposal was pushed aside out of respect for Pakistan, but in January 2006, during a visit to Delhi, King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia expressed his support to the idea of India being an 'Observer' state. Hence now India is able to have a special relationship with Israel without sacrificing its links with the Arab and the Muslim world.

Actually the diplomatic choices India and Israel make are sometimes seen as extremely troublesome by one another. From an Israeli point of view, even more than the Indian position on the Palestinian rights, it is the still-cordial relationship with Tehran that is disturbing. As for New Delhi, it can only be unhappy with the rather ambiguous relationship Israel has sometimes with China: it appears that on the Phalcon issue reminded earlier, as well as on the discussions between Israel and Beijing in order to upgrade Chinese drones (2004), it was more the American opposition than the Israel-India special relationship that protected Indian interests. It appears clearly that Israeli and Chinese markets are more complementary than the Indian and Israeli ones. Nowadays China is the 2nd largest foreign market for the Israelis. Such situation does not mean that the relationship could fall apart anytime soon. But we are not in a “Cold War” diplomatic situation anymore: even special relationships are not exclusive. Here again, one should ask: what are the lessons Pakistani military and political elites can get from such analysis? First it is maybe a good example to illustrate the way world diplomacy will work in the 21st century: India is able to build a close relationship with Israel, getting the best of it, but it does not make of New Delhi an enemy of Saudi Arabia, and it does not even stop Indian diplomacy from some symbolic gesture of support to the Palestinian people when it is in its interest. Outside of what is the heart of the national interests of a country, every diplomatic relationship is possible. In many ways, the “victors” in the first decades of the 21st century will be the states able to talk to everybody, getting the best of all relationships in a “multi-vector” diplomacy trying to get the best of all without making unnecessary enemies. Such approach would mean for Pakistan, regionally, to avoid any tensions with its neighbourhood outside India, the only country with which it has important disputes. And internationally, it means not to take side in any tensions between Great Powers, and to be able to keep talking to all. Because of Pakistan's geographical position, such approach is actually more vital than for India. Its neighbourhood means the necessity to make friends with all, without committing too much to any against any other. In a way, we come back to basics of international relations the way it has always been: it is about Pakistan first, about protecting its national interests.

Another interesting lesson of the India-Israel relations is the mix of ideological reasons and Realpolitik for this relationship. It is clear that if it was just ideology alone, it would not work, it would not have lasted that long. One can see that diplomatic “friendships” based only on ideology (for example the Arab League, even the IOC) has not been really successful: culture alone, religious/civilizational closeness alone, does not make good effective diplomacy. It does not mean that it has no impact: it can actually be used as a powerful symbolic tool. But it needs to be mixed with realpolitik, with economic, trade-related, and diplomatic issues of interest for the states part of this relationship. It explains why for Pakistan to have an “Islamic” diplomacy is not necessarily a bad idea: Pakistan is born to protect the South Asian Muslims from possible persecution from a Hindu majority after independence from the British.

For Pakistan to be now active in all issues of interest for the Muslim world could be a good way to have an influence internationally. But of course, priority needs to be given to an “Islamic” diplomacy that would make sense from a realist point of view. With such a mix in mind, a particularly interesting bilateral relationship for Pakistan would be with Indonesia. The good relationship between the leaderships of the two countries in the 1950s and 60s at least, are well known. Indonesia did not hesitate to side with Islamabad during the 1965 war. Trade has been growing between the two countries, reaching $1.65 billion in 2012. And there is still room to make this bilateral trade grow in the future. On the diplomatic front, to have Jakarta and Islamabad working together on subject of mutual interest could make them one of the most important (and representative) voices from the Muslim world. A voice that could be better heard as much by the East (as they are two Asian countries) than by the West (as Indonesians and Pakistanis are not in systematic opposition with the US, contrary to the difficult diplomatic relations Iran has with Europe and America for the time being). Last, but not the least, the India-Israel relationship should be a great reminder of the importance of the China-Pakistan friendship. Of course, diplomatic relations can never be as perfect as individual ones, and Beijing does not have the money the Americans can use to promote their interests anywhere they want in the world. But China has proved its diplomatic friendship very regularly. And it has the same basic interests as Pakistan: to defend a geopolitical vision of South Asia, a region at peace, developing well economically, and avoiding the tyrannical rule of one state on all the others. Beijing, like Islamabad, could never accept an Indian “Monroe Doctrine” on South Asia, a notion that the Indians have already promoted with their “Indira Doctrine.” India and Israel are important allies because they respect each other's position on diplomatic subjects, and help reinforce each other's security. It is very similar to the China-Pakistan relationship nowadays. Hence, besides the idea of an “Islamic” diplomacy Pakistan could promote, more than ever, diplomatic ties with China should be a priority for the beginning of the 21st century.

And like the India-Israel relation again, it should not be limited to the relationship between state: people-to-people relationship should also be promoted. Efforts are already being made, with more and more Pakistanis learning Mandarin. Such an approach should receive even more support from the state, and Chinese students should be received with open arms and as much help provided as possible to come to Pakistan to learn Urdu, English, Punjabi, or even other languages like Persian or Arabic. Over time, Pakistan should be the preferred cultural and linguistic door for the Chinese to better understand the Muslim world. India looks to develop a strong relationship with Israel and the US: Pakistan has already a strong relationship with the Asian Great Power of the 21st century, it should make sure to nurture it as much as possible.

The writer is a Visiting Research Fellow at Islamabad Policy Research Institute (IPRI). He is in charge of the Programme on Iran and South Asia at IPSE (Institute for Prospective and Security in Europe). This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Written By: Col Ehsan Mehmood Khan

“The objectives of foreign policy must be defined in terms of the national interest and must be supported with adequate power.” – Hans J. Morgenthau Interests form to be the nucleus of human relationships from individual to communities, and nations to alliances. The term 'interest' is used in a number of ways and with a host of prefixes and suffixes. A few commonly used phrases are: personal interest, individual interest, group interest, community interest, ethnic interest, parochial interests, party interest, commercial interest, economic interest, and security interest etc. The list goes on. While all these phrases hold good at domestic level, national interest reigns supreme at the national and international levels. National interests are expression of the national purpose, national aspirations and national objectives. Simply put, it epitomizes raison d'être of a nation state. It has evolved into one of the most important terminologies in the lexicon on international politics. We may even term it as the currency of international relations. In the words of Morgenthau, “It is not only a political necessity, but also a moral duty for a nation to always follow in its dealings with other nations but one guiding star, one standard for thought, one rule for action: The National Interest.” (Hans J. Morgenthau, In Defence of the National Interest: A Critical Examination of American Foreign Policy, Knopf, 1951). Past through Present In olden times, national interest used to be seen in terms of the interest of the “sovereign” or monarch or a dynasty. The Peace of Westphalia (1648) paved the way for newer concepts including the phrase 'national interest'. The term had been used during the 16th and 17th centuries in Italy, France, Germany and Britain with different words. The American political scientists, scholars and statesmen have extensively used this term in the course of explanation of constitutional matters and the deliberations on political philosophy.

Today, the 21st Century scholars, political and military leaders, bureaucrats, diplomats, business leaders, civil society activists, media professionals and journalists, and commoners debate national interest from various angles. What and what not should be a national interest comes under debate in addition to the interplay of national and public debate. However, this article aims at giving a conceptual perspective only rather than identification of the national interests. Identification of interests goes beyond the purview of an academic inquiry. National Interest and Realism Conceptual value and analytical usefulness of national interests has remained a matter of debate between various schools of thought. Realism is the chief proponent of national interest. All variants of Realism underline the value of national interest and the struggle for power. The proponents of Realism advocate that the states exist within an anarchic international system in which they are ultimately dependent upon their own capabilities, or power, to further their national interests (Encyclopaedia Britannica). The critics contend that the concept of national interest, though ostensibly appealing, suffers from serious pitfalls. Stanley Hoffman rebuffs it being “oversimplified and wrong-headedly dogmatic.” To the proponents of the national interest, the most important national interest is the survival of the state, including its people, political system, and territorial integrity. Other major interests for realists include preservation of the culture and the economy. The Realist theorists and proponents study the nature of issues on realistic rather than moralistic or legalistic grounds. They contend that, as long as the world is divided into nation-states in an anarchic setting, national interest will continue to play its role in inter-state relations.

The Machiavellian doctrine that “anything is justified by reason of state (Ragion di Stato)” carries an empirical testimony to corroborate that the states would meet their national interests using all available means and methods, and that the ends would justify the means when it comes to realize the national interests. We must note that whereas Realism as a structured and accepted discipline of study was not introduced until around the World War II, the concepts engrossing Realism had been debated for centuries in the writings of the scholars and statesmen. Thucydides, Chanakya (Kautilya), Ibn-e-Khaldun, Han Feizi, Niccolò Machiavelli and Thomas Hobbes are but a few to name in addition to some of the modern day Realists like Hans J. Morgenthau, George F. Kennan, Herman Kahn and E. H. Carr. All of them looked at the national interests with a particular emphasis as the general and continuing ends for which sovereign nation states act in international relations as well as the domestic statecraft. The proponents of different variants of realism, too, do not relegate the importance of national interests. The key ones to note are as follows: Robert J. Art – Neorealism; Robert Jervis – Defensive Realism; Kenneth Waltz – Structural Realism; Stephen Walt – Defensive Realism; John Mearsheimer – Offensive Realism; and Robert Gilpin – Hegemonic Stability Theory. Defining National Interest

Various institutions, countries and scholars have defined national interest different even though the essence does not change in any case. A few have been cited here.

• The Commission on America's National Interests. National interests are the fundamental building blocks in any discussion of foreign policy.

• Brookings Institution, USA. National interest is “the general and continuing ends for which a nation acts.”

• National Defence University (NDU), Islamabad, Pakistan. National interests are the most important wants and needs of a nation. At the highest level of abstraction, national interests are the “wellspring” from which national objectives, policy and strategy flow. The overriding national interests are normally stated in terms of national survival, national identity and well being. Preservation of territorial integrity, freedom, independence, socio-political institutions and honour are fundamental to the survival of a nation (defined by NDU for academic purposes).

• The US Army War College. National interests may be defined as “desired end states based on values and strategic analysis. Expressed as policies.”

• Michael G. Roskin. “What is good for the nation as a whole in international affairs” is national interest and “what is good for the nation as a whole in domestic affairs is the public interest.”

• Charles Lerche and Abul Said. National interest is “the general long-term and continuing purpose which the state, the nation, and government all see themselves as serving.”

• Vernon Van Dyke. National interest is an interest which the states seek to protect or achieve in relation to each other. Categorizing National Interests

Thomas W. Robinson's Classification. Thomas W. Robinson has broadly classified the national interests into six categories:

• Primary Interests. These include the preservation of physical, political, and cultural identity of the state.

• Secondary Interests. These are less important than the primary interests though quite vital to the existence of the state.

• Permanent Interests. These refer to the relatively constant and long-term interest of the state and a change therein is rather slow. Pakistan's desire to keep the Sea Lines of Communication (SLOCs) stemming from the Strait of Hormuz in the Gulf so as to ensure uninterrupted oil supply from the Arabian Peninsula is an example of permanent interest.

• Variable Interests. These refer to the interests of a nation, which are considered vital for national good in a given set of circumstances. Changed situations or circumstances may make such interest redundant being no-more-required. For instance, the US interest to contain the influence of USSR ceased to exist after the demise of Cold War.

• General Interests. These refer to those positive conditions which apply to a large number of nations or in a several specified fields such as economics, trade, diplomatic, intercourse etc. For instance it is in general interest of Pakistan to maintain strategic military balance in South Asia.

• Specific Interests. Through the logical outgrowth of the general interest, specific interests are defined in terms of time or space. For instance, it was in Pakistan's interest to combat terrorism in all its forms and manifestation or it was in the US interest to support other nations in combating communist insurgencies during the Cold War. Robinson also refers to three other interests which he calls “international interests.” These include identical interests, complementary interests and conflicting interest. Joseph Frankel's Classification. Joseph Frankel proposed a classification of the uses of the term 'national interest' into 'aspirational', 'operational', 'explanatory' and 'polemical'.

• Aspirational Interests. On the aspirational level, national interest refers to some ideal set of goals, which the states would like to realize. These are often fueled by ideological leaning, cultural makeup, public aspirations and historical memories. Pakistan-China all-weather and time tested friendship, which is deemed “higher than mountains, deeper than the ocean, stronger than steel and sweeter than honey” by the two nations has aspirational linkage that stems from pleasant memories of support to each other on domestic and international levels through decades.

• Operational Interests. At the operational level, national interest is the sum total of interest and policies actually pursued.

• Explanatory-Polemical. At the explanatory-polemical level, in political argument, the concept of national interest is used to explain, evaluate, rationalize or criticize foreign policy.

Categorization by the Commission on America's National Interests. The Commission on America's National Interests, in its July 2000 report on America's National Interests identified a hierarchy of US national interests: “vital interests,” “extremely important interests,” “important interests,” and “less important or secondary interests.” The commission defined the US national interests as follows:

• Vital National Interests. Vital national interests are conditions that are strictly necessary to safeguard and enhance Americans' survival and well-being in a free and secure nation.

• Extremely Important National Interests. Extremely important national interests are conditions that, if compromised, would severely prejudice but not strictly imperil the ability of the US government to secure nation.

• Important National Interests. Important national interests are conditions that, if compromised, would have major negative consequences for the ability of the US government to safeguard and enhance the well-being of Americans in a free and secure nation.

• Less Important or Secondary National Interests. Less important or secondary national interests are not unimportant. They are desirable conditions.

US Army War College's Categorization. US Army War College, in its official academic guide on national security issues, categorizes national interests considering the intensity of important and application as Survival, Vital, Important and Peripheral interests (US Army Guide to National Security Issues, Vol II, 2012). National Defence University (NDU) of Pakistan's Categorization. NDU Pakistan's academic guide for the students of national security and war course (Statecraft and Strategy, Vol II, 2010-11) categorizes national interests as follows:

• Vital Interests. These are directly connected to the survival, safety and vitality of a nation.

• Most Important Interests. These include interests, which if unfulfilled will affect vital national interests.

• Important Interests. These include those national interests, which affect national well being of a nation or the world as a whole. If unfulfilled, these are unlikely to affect vital national interests.

• Peripheral Interests. These are harder to define. Anything that does not fall into the above three categories but is still in the nation's interest is peripheral.

National Interest and Public Interest National interests are often seen and studied in terms of international relations and thus foreign policy. To this end, Charles Evans Hughes, the US Secretary of State from 1921-1925, conservative internationalist by intellectual leaning and foreign policy outlook, opposed President Woodrow Wilson on the League of Nations and asserted in 1923: “Foreign policies are not built upon abstractions. They are the result of practical conceptions of national interest arising from some immediate exigency or standing out vividly in historical perspective.” (Glenn P. Hastedt, Encyclopedia of American Foreign Policy, 2002). But it may be kept in view that foreign policy in itself is a depiction of the internal policy of a nation state. Considering this, we can say that the national interest too is depiction of public interest. The Constitution of Pakistan and National Interest The constitution is the quintessence of national interest of a country. According to Hans J. Morgenthau, the idea of the national interest in general resembles the constitution of the US and “its content can run the whole gamut of meanings which are logically compatible with it [i.e. national interest].” Pakistan is no exception. In the Constitution of Pakistan, the word “interest” has appeared 65 times signifying in 16 different characters to include:

• public interest – Articles 10 (5) & (6), 15, 23, 24 (3) (d), 151(2) & (4), 199 (b), 230 (3).

• interest of public order – Article 16.

• interests of minorities and backward and depressed classes – Articles 2 A (The Objective Resolution), 36 and 37 (a).

• interest of the sovereignty, integrity, solidarity, well-being and prosperity of Pakistan – Article 17 (1) & (2), oath of the President vide Article 42, oath of the Prime Minister vide Article 91 (5), oath of federal minister or minister of state vide Article 92 (2), oath of Chairman or Deputy Chairman of Senate vide Articles 53 (2) and 61, oath of member of Senate vide Article 65, oath of Governor of province vide Article 102, oath of Chief Minister or provincial minister vide Articles 130 (5) and 132 (2), oath of speaker of deputy speaker provincial assembly vide Article 53 (2) and 127, oath of member provincial assembly vide Articles 65 and 127.

• interest of services – Article 27.

• interest of free competition [in the realm of] trade, commerce or industry – Article 18 (b).

• interest of the glory of Islam – Article 19.

• general interest of people – Article 38.

• common interest, Council of Common Interests (CCI) – Articles 40, 153, 157 (3) and explanation below the Article 161.

• interest in contract – Article 63 (k), (l) & (i).

• interest of province, federal capital or the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) or any of the inhabitants thereof – Articles 148 (2), 155.

• interest of justice – Article 186 A.

• interest of the economic life, financial stability or credit of Pakistan or any part thereof – Article 235.

• interest in property, movable or immovable, and any means and instruments of production – Article 260 (1).

• interest (the economic terminology) – Articles 161 (explanation below), 260,

• personal interest – oath of the President vide Article 42, oath of the Prime Minister vide Article 91 (5), oath of federal minister or minister of state vide Article 92 (2), oath of Chairman or Deputy Chairman of Senate vide Articles 53 (2) and 61, oath of member of Senate vide Article 65, oath of Governor of province vide Article 102, oath of Chief Minister or provincial minister vide Articles 130 (5) and 132 (2), oath of speaker of deputy speaker provincial assembly vide Article 53 (2) and 127, oath of member provincial assembly vide Articles 65 and 127, oath of Auditor General of Pakistan vide Article 168 (2), oath of chief justices and judges of Supreme Court and High Courts vide Article 178 and 194, oath of Chief Justice or judges of Federal Shariat Court vide Article 203 (7), and oath of Chief Election Commissioner vide Article 214.

It may be noted that the phrase “national interest” has not appeared even once in the Constitution albeit it embodies the modus operandi for attaining the national interests and modus vivendi for maintaining national integrity. The term “interest” used therein, as noted above, indeed points to the national interests in various forms. The Constitution of Pakistan is a catalyst for interplay of national and public interest. As an all-accepted social contract, it not only works to aggregate the public interest but also watches over the national interests. To cite as an example, Article 2 A guarantees fundamental rights, including equality of status, of opportunity and before law, social, economic and political justice, and freedom of thought, expression, belief, faith, worship and association, subject to law and public morality is manifestation of public interest. Likewise, inter alia, Article 40 is signifies one of the national interests in these words:

The State shall endeavour to preserve and strengthen fraternal relations among Muslim countries based on Islamic unity, support the common interests of the peoples of Asia, Africa and Latin America, promote international peace and security, foster goodwill and friendly relations among all nations and encourage the settlement of international disputes by peaceful means. Similarly, the references to sovereignty, integrity, security and defence of the state manifest vital national interests. Even though composed of human beings, the character of states is unlike human souls. Human beings keep forth their interest only to the extent that they serve them and their kith and kin well. If they have to choose between their friends and the interests, they might decide on the former. The case of states is different. More often than not, they pick out the latter. The assertion of Lord Palmerston, a renowned statesman of 19th century, before the House of Commons in 1848, bears testimony to the fact: “It is a narrow policy to suppose that this country or that country is to be marked out as the eternal ally or the perpetual enemy of England. We have no eternal allies, and we have no perpetual enemies. Our interests are eternal, and those interests it is our duty to follow.”

Pakistan is a great sovereign reality on the map of the world: is 6th largest in population, 36th largest in territorial area, comprises healthy ethno-linguistic diversities, 26th largest in the world in terms of Purchasing Power Parity (PPP), and 44th largest in terms of nominal GDP (with the prospects to become 18th largest economy by 2050, falling in 'Next Eleven' N-11, according to Jim O'Neill of Goldman Sachs), and is one of the seven nuclear powers of the world. It has legitimate national interests in line with the aspiration of the over 180 million people and consistent with the norms of the current world order. Like adjudication, aggregation and articulation of public interest, national interest too start taking shape from the people's mind through the highest seat of the country's leadership aided by the state institutions and civil society. It must be done and done methodically as has been noted by Robert J. Art: “the most fundamental task in devising a grand strategy is to determine a nation's national interests because of the critical role that national interests play, they must be carefully justified, not merely assumed.”

The writer is a PhD (Peace and Conflict Studies) scholar, author of Human Security of Pakistan (published 2013) and co-author of Kashmir: Looking Beyond the Peril (published 2014). This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Written By: Brian Cloughley

“We have declared that the fate of Kashmir is ultimately to be decided by the people. That pledge we have given, and the Maharajah has supported it, not only to the people of Kashmir but to the world. We will not and cannot back out of it.” Speech by the Prime Minister of India, Mr Jawaharlal Nehru, 2 November 1947. Unfortunately India backed out of Mr Nehru's undertaking, which is why Kashmir has been recognized internationally as a disputed territory for almost seven decades. And there is no point in it being claimed that it is not so recognized, because the UN Security Council determined on 20 January 1948 (Resolution 654) that in regard to Kashmir (and of course elsewhere), the UN “may investigate any dispute or any situation which might, by its continuance, endanger the maintenance of international peace and security.” The UNSC Resolution 726 of 21 April 1948 was explicit in noting “with satisfaction that both India and Pakistan desire that the question of the accession of Jammu and Kashmir should be decided through the democratic method of a free and impartial plebiscite.” Neither of these resolutions has been repealed. They remain in force, and until such time that the UN

Security Council formally retracts or annuls them, Kashmir remains on the legal books and the moral conscience of the world. To mediate in the dispute, the Security Council established the United Nations Commission for India and Pakistan (UNCIP) in January 1948, and in the Karachi Agreement of 27 July 1949 it was decided by the two sides, with mediation by the truce Sub-Committee of UNCIP, that there should be establishment of a Cease Fire Line (CFL) in Kashmir along, which the Commission “will station observers where it deems necessary.” (The meeting was cordial, as chronicled by one of the UN members, Lieutenant General Maurice Delvoie, whose son Louis was Canada's High Commissioner in Islamabad when the writer served there as Australian Defence Adviser.) The following January, the first officers of the United Nations Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) arrived in the region, tasked to take a hard and impartial look at what was going on and report the facts to the fledgling UNHQ. Although observers were stationed where the UN decided they were needed, and there was no restriction on their movement, they were not empowered to intervene in local disputes between the opposing sides. In the event these were comparatively rare, and in time it became the duty of observers to facilitate meetings between the sides, which was a sensible way of dealing with differences.

Impartiality was the keynote of UN involvement in the Kashmir dispute in those days, and when it appointed the distinguished Australian judge Sir Owen Dixon to mediate between the sides they could have hardly chosen a more independent and even-handed figure. But even Sir Owen, a patient and painstaking man, was in the end “convinced that India's agreement would never be obtained to demilitarization in any form, or to provisions governing the period of the plebiscite of any such character as would in my opinion permit the plebiscite being conducted in conditions sufficiently guarding against intimidation and other forms of influence and abuse by which the freedom and fairness of the plebiscite might be imperilled.” So wrote the future Chief Justice of Australia, frustrated, as others have been, by India's apparent acceptance of agreements which, then being regarded as nationally inconvenient, are later sidelined. There was, too, to be a decided change in the attitude of Australia to the Kashmir question. Following the 1965 war between India and Pakistan, the Soviet Union mediated between the sides, to their mutual satisfaction, and under the auspices of Moscow they signed the Tashkent Declaration on 10 January 1966, stating among other things that they “will exert all efforts to create good neighbourly relations between India and Pakistan in accordance with the United Nations Charter.” There was no mention of evasion of United Nations Security Council Resolutions concerning Kashmir, and it was gratifying that both nations confirmed their willingness to abide by the Charter to the effect that, as laid down in Article 33, “The parties to any dispute, the continuance of which is likely to endanger the maintenance of international peace and security, shall, first of all, seek a solution by negotiation, enquiry, mediation, conciliation, arbitration, judicial settlement, resort to regional agencies or arrangements, or other peaceful means of their own choice.” And further, in Article 37 that “Should the parties to a dispute of the nature referred to in Article 33 fail to settle it by the means indicated in that Article, they shall refer it to the Security Council.” The Declaration confirmed acceptance that the UN, as represented by UNMOGIP, had a precise role to play in Kashmir, and it performed this role effectively for six years, while the region's population waited for action at the international level in order that their status and fate could be decided. Then in 1971 the countries went to war again and there was an interesting outcome so far as Kashmir was concerned, which boded ill for the future.

To this day, exchanges of fire continue across the Line of Control in Kashmir, which is regrettable because, as always, innocent people are killed in this sort of affray. There is no point in attempting to apportion blame about violations of the accord of 25 November 2003 in which India and Pakistan “agreed to observe a ceasefire . . . along the international border, the Line of Control and the Siachen Glacier.” That initiative was a welcome indication of flexibility, moderation and attempted confidence-building in a dispute which should be settled by common sense application of measures to ensure that wider conflict will not arise. Which is why the United Nations Organisation continues to have a major part to play in the Kashmir dispute, and UNMOGIP, if permitted by India, could properly monitor the dividing line between the existing Kashmirs, preparatory to the UN Security Council insisting on action in accordance with existing resolutions. India has the laudable ambition to be a permanent member of the UN Security Council and is supported by many nations including China (albeit with a caveat), Russia, and the United States. After the leaders of the US and India met in Washington in September 2010 it was stated that “the United States looks forward to a reformed UN Security Council with India as a permanent member; President Obama and Prime Minister Singh agreed that both their nations bear a responsibility to ensure that the Security Council continues to, effectively, play the role in maintaining international peace and security envisioned in the United Nations Charter.”

These are admirable sentiments, but there seems to be a lack of will to transform aspiration into practicality. The Kashmir problem has not been solved. It remains a UN responsibility under Article 33, yet there is no wish by India to abide by UN principles, in that “Should the parties to a dispute of the nature referred to in Article 33 fail to settle it by the means indicated in that Article, they shall refer it to the Security Council.” As India's Mr Nehru said in 1960 when discussing a crisis in Congo, “The role of the United Nations is a mediatory one . . . We are convinced that these questions cannot be dealt with on a bilateral basis, or even by a group of countries. They are of immediate and vital concern to the entire world.” Quite so: and his reference to the UN being “mediatory” cannot be brushed aside or swept under a Kashmir rug, for that matter. But sweeping seems to be the drift of the moment, as indicated by India's Foreign Minister Salman Khurshid who pronounced that, “There is no way in which India will accept any intervention on an issue that is entirely accepted in the Simla Agreement as a bilateral issue between India and Pakistan.” But it wasn't “entirely accepted” in the Simla Accord that there is exclusion of mediation. The meeting of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto and Indira Gandhi at Simla in 1972 resulted in a joint undertaking that the Line of Control be established and that “the principles and purposes of the Charter of the United Nations shall govern the relations between the countries,” and, more specifically, that “the two countries are resolved to settle their differences by peaceful means through bilateral negotiations or by any other peaceful means mutually agreed upon between them.” In accordance with the UN Charter there is no bar to mediation and specific note is made of the desirability of “any other peaceful means.” Certainly it would be preferable for India and Pakistan to solve their differences bilaterally. This would indeed be a civilised manner in which to settle a disagreement. But they haven't managed to agree on much for over 65 years, so it's more than time for another approach. And there could not be a better solution than agreeing to mediation by the United Nations to whose ideals and principles both nations unconditionally subscribe. India's Defence Minister, Mr Antony, has declared that, “We are not in favour of involvement of any third country in talks between India and Pakistan.” But the United Nations Organisation is not a “third country.” It is a world body dedicated to attempting to stop countries going to war with each other. Certainly its ethos can be at variance with national vanity, and its verdicts may offend those against whom it might decide. But its judgements are the closest the world is going to get to international reason.

As noted by UNMOGIP itself, “Given the disagreement between the two parties over UNMOGIP's mandate and functions, the Secretary-General's position has been that UNMOGIP could be terminated only by a decision of the Security Council. In the absence of such an agreement, UNMOGIP has been maintained with the same arrangements as established following December 1971 ceasefire. The tasks of UNMOGIP have been to observe, to the extent possible, developments pertaining to the strict observance of the ceasefire of 17 December 1971 and to report thereon to the Secretary-General. The military authorities of Pakistan have continued to lodge complaints with UNMOGIP about ceasefire violations. The military authorities of India have lodged no complaints since January 1972 and have restricted the activities of the UN observers on the Indian side of the Line of Control. They have, however, continued to provide accommodation, transport and other facilities.” Both countries have provided Field Stations in military areas, in which modest accommodation 2-4 UN Observers are based, and although India has declined to abide by United Nations principles, in the past, many local problems were resolved with the help of UN officers. For some years since 1972, the Mission was able to monitor the Line of Control fairly effectively from the Pakistan side, but bit by bit the rot set in, and India managed to convince several countries that UNMOGIP was a waste of time. What New Delhi was seeking, of course, was disbandment of the Mission, as part of its campaign to remove the UN from the Kashmir agenda entirely. Australia was one example of success in this regard, and in the early 1980s its Defence Adviser in India was persuaded jovially by Indian officers that the Mission – “the Srinagar Rod and Gun Club” as they referred to it disparagingly – should not receive Australian support. Indeed this went so far as having the High Commissioner himself, while on holiday in a Kashmir lake houseboat, declining to meet any of the six Australians in UNMOGIP. This included me, as deputy head of the mission and staying for a weekend in the houseboat next to his. The tactics worked, and shortly after I left the Mission, the Australian contribution was withdrawn. India's campaign continued, and some field stations on the Indian side were closed, not because UNMOGIP wanted this, but because the Mission was given no support from UN HQ New York, where the mantra of the “Srinagar Rod and Gun Club” gained traction. It was made more difficult, week by week, for example, for the little twin-engined UN aircraft to get flight clearance from Delhi and eventually it had to be withdrawn. Movement over the UN road crossing-points became, on the Indian side, unaccountably more difficult to negotiate. All immature stuff, of course – but effective in demonstrating that India calls the shots as regards the operation of a Military Mission established and still maintained by the UN Security Council of which it seeks membership.

There seemed to be hope in November 2008 when Mr Obama said, “We should probably try to facilitate a better understanding between Pakistan and India and try to resolve the Kashmir crisis so that they can stay focused not on India, but on the situation with those militants.” But “The Kashmir crisis” then vanished from the view of President Obama and, it seems, from the horizon and ideals of the United Nations, leaving UNMOGIP in the wings when it could and should be centre stage. Mediation is defined as “a form of conflict management in which a third party assists two or more contending parties to find a solution without resorting to force.” As I have emphasised in other forums, mediation does not demand capitulation. Acceptance of independent judgement is not declaration of weakness, and the parties involved could, with profit, bear in mind Mr Nehru's advice to “Let us be a little humble; let us think that the truth may not perhaps be entirely with us.” It would be admirable, were the countries to demonstrate restraint and realism by referring the Kashmir dispute to the UN for consideration, while placing their own arguments before it, which they are perfectly entitled to do. The matter remains on the books of the Security Council, and India has no hope of becoming a permanent member of that body if it continues to adhere to the misleading notion that its own disputes fall outside its compass. After all, as a non-permanent member of the Security Council in 2011, it examined (for example) the problem of the Congo (like Mr Nehru a half-century before), and voted for the Resolution that “Demands that all armed groups . . . immediately cease all forms of violence.” As observed by Mr Nehru: “in ages long past, a great son of India, the Buddha, said that the only real victory is one in which all are equally victorious and there is defeat for no one. In the world today, that is the only practical victory. Any other way will lead to disaster.” It is up to his successors to follow his wise advice.

The writer is a France based retired officer of Australian Army and is an expert on South Asian affairs. He is also author of different books, and contributes extensively in international media. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Written By: Ejaz Haider

Even as the internal security threat to Pakistan increases, the country continues to debate whether the threat is to be countered through dialoguing with the adversary or fighting him. Leaving aside the fact that a complex conflict situation cannot be reduced to binaries, there are two broad reasons for this. One, despite hundreds of military operations, big and small, in the Federally-Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), the state has not been able to blunt the asymmetric advantage of the groups fighting it. Two, there is still no consensus on who the enemy is, what are his objectives and why is he perpetrating and perpetuating violence.

The state's inability to degrade the enemy's capacity means that while military operations have dominated physical space in FATA, with the exception of North Waziristan, they have mostly failed to stop urban terrorism. People have seen bodies piling up over the years and that has had a psychological impact. Despite many successes and a heavy price paid by the state, the enemy's asymmetric advantage has yet to be blunted. He remains entrenched and continues to strengthen himself by using a combination of ideology and coercion. This instills fear and uncertainty among the people. The terrorist/insurgent reverses, for his success, Sun Tzu's dictum that a war should not be protracted. His success depends on prolonging the conflict. For the state, success lies in the exact opposite, in winning as quickly as possible. And winning in an irregular war means making the insurgent/terrorist irrelevant to the population in which he operates. That's the strategy of dislocation: dislocate the enemy from the context that strengthens him. The second aspect is the lack of consensus on who are the groups the state is fighting. This is begotten of multiple factors. Beginning with the eighties, the state started using jihad as a policy tool. In Afghanistan it was helped by the 'free world' led by the United States. The Soviet occupation of Afghanistan brought in jihadis from around the world. They waged the war against Soviet troops in collaboration with the local jihadis. This policy might have allowed the state plausible deniability and helped to avoid a direct confrontation with potential external enemies, but it also resulted in creating power centres within the state that have begun to challenge the state's writ. Over the years they have also come to lay claim to the state itself, citing their Islamic credentials and declaring the state itself un-Islamic.

But this employment was the second stage. Even as jihadis were arriving from abroad, at home, General Zia-ul-Haq was embarked on making this country more Islamic. The groups the state is fighting now are birthed by a mindset the state itself has created and nourished over a long period of time. These groups always had a supra-state ideology but have now turned on the state post-9/11. They accuse the state of making an about-face and becoming involved in a U.S.-led war in Afghanistan. The problem of Zia's Islamisation process, however, goes beyond the groups fighting the state. Thousands more in the society not only sympathise with them but are also prepared to join them. The societal confusion is, therefore, not just a consequence of fear and uncertainty. Ideology also plays an important role in this drama. Put another way, while the state has turned around, the society has not. The state is now fighting sections of its own society which have, over decades, developed an extremist, supra-state mindset. This is what makes employing the strategy of dislocation so difficult. It also helps cadres from these groups to merge in the population and mount attacks on the security forces and soft targets in the urban centres with relative ease. This is not all, though. Even those who do not subscribe to these groups' violent methods argue that the war is reactive rather than ideological. One can cite the view of certain political elements as an example of this argument. These political parties and their voters think that the current violence is a result of the state's decision to embroil itself in a war waged by the United States. All these arguments employ selective facts of course and none gives the full picture. Yet, that is a problem any state will face when locked in a conflict that seems unending. This is not peculiar to Pakistan. What is, however, specific to Pakistan are two things: the anti-Americanism and the acceptance by most people, even those against violence, that these groups are waging a reactive war. The implied argument is that if Pakistan gets out of the U.S. war, these groups will lay down arms and everything will be back to normal. This is extremely naïve and fails to understand the genesis and purport of this insurgency/terrorism. Nonetheless, this public perception makes fighting the war that much more difficult.

Given all these factors, how should the state go about it? Pakistan's counterinsurgency effort, or what can more appropria-tely be called Counter-Terrorism Military Operations (CT Mil Ops), can be put in three phases: 2004-08, 2008-13 and 2014 onwards. In the first phase, while deployment continued to increase, operations were conducted without much emphasis on capturing and holding ground. This strategy, which can be called the Musharraf strategy, notched some tactical successes but the operations didn't add up to any strategic mosaic. Troops were inducted into FATA, mostly in South Waziristan initially, without any pre-induction training and they fought a war they were ill-trained and ill-equipped to fight. The army suffered losses during the initial phases. The main objective of these ops – extraction ops, commando raids, mop ups – was nothing more to these operations than capturing Al Qaeda and Afghan Taliban commanders and ensuring that no one crossed over into Afghanistan from the eastern side. While many Al Qaeda and Taliban commanders were captured or killed, the cost of the operations continued to increase in men and material and the insurgency spread to other agencies. There was no counter narrative and by the end of 2008, large physical spaces in FATA had come under the control of Taliban groups. By early 2007, General Musharraf had also become politically weak and controversial and the entire policy was questioned on the basis of legitimacy. General Musharraf's question of legitimacy now also hung over the legitimacy of the war effort itself. After the Lal Masjid operation, which came too late and was poorly conducted, the reprisal attacks against hard and soft targets increased manifold. That is another episode which, those arguing in favour of talks, use to counter the argument for using force or the threat of its use. With General Musharraf out of the picture as army chief, General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani took over. General Kayani wanted to get the army out of the civilian sphere and to refocus energies on tackling the problem in FATA. He introduced the concept of Counter-Terrorism Centres which also imparted pre-induction training. All units deployed to FATA were to go through the 4- to 6-week PIT to ensure better performance and to bring down the number of casualties. The doctrine shifted from targeted operations to capturing and holding ground. The army also developed better coordination with the air force for this purpose. [NB: How effective the air operations have been is a matter of debate and to my knowledge no external study has been done in this regard. A study done by Benjamin Lambeth for Carnegie Endowment for International Peace on Indian use of air force in the Kargil War argues that given the terrain, altitude and other factors, aerial platforms were not very effective even when the IAF gradually developed better strategies.] General Kayani understood that successful conduct of this war required a counter narrative. Public buy-in became the buzzword in all army briefings. Further, General Kayani introduced the concept of 'Clear, Hold, Build, Transfer', meaning recapturing territory held by insurgent groups, holding it, building institutions and infrastructure and transferring authority to the civilian administration.

A good concept, its 'transfer' stage has been problematic even in Malakand. In FATA, the success of hold, build and transfer stages varies from one to another agency. Similarly, internal displacement of populations remains a problem. Despite a full-scale military operation in the Mehsud triangle in 2009, the sections of population remain displaced even after six years. The same is true for other agencies. But the most effective strategy adopted by the insurgent/terrorist groups has been attacks in the urban centres. Neutralising and pre-empting urban terrorism is the job of police forces, what is known as Counter-Terrorism Police Operations (CT Police Ops). That area has been the weakest. No serious effort has been made to make the police effective and the efforts that have been made were, and are, grounded in a flawed concept of CT. Take one example: every time there is talk of training the police for CT, the civilian governments turn towards the army. The pattern is familiar: get Special Services Group (SSG) personnel to train the police; get more SMGs for the police units, more Glock pistols et cetera. No one has realised so far that the army cannot train the police; that militarising the police will not make it an effective CT force; that effective CT Ops and effective policing are two sides of the same coin. Finally, that while actual fighting will be done by specialised police sub-units that must be highly trained in urban combat, the work of tracking down the terrorist cells is the job of experts that do not need commando training or any weapons. In a way, CT can be reduced to two main ingredients: tracking money and tracking communication. Both these activities require financial experts, lawyers, communication specialists, forensic experts, investigators etc. A commando sub-unit going out in the field is the tail-end of a long process that requires expertise of different kinds, not the militarised, useless police units we currently have. This has to be supplemented with improving the police's capacity for its day-to-day functions. No CT effort can succeed unless the police can perform its routine functions effectively. One can say much more on the issue, detailing its technicalities, but the point is simple: one, so far no government has shown to have a clear understanding of what CT Police Ops really mean; two, CT Mil Ops can never be fully effective until the state improves its capacity to neutralise the threat in the urban centres. To put it another way, CT Mil Ops must be supplemented by CT Police Ops and vice versa. This is akin to double envelopment or, more aptly, can be described in terms of a strategy that relies on multiple thrusts and a plan that, using surprise and high mobility, achieves initiative and throws the enemy off balance. Do the unpredictable. So far, we have done the predictable and the enemy has been ahead of us all along.

That also brings us to the third phase – 2014 onwards. There has been an interesting development under the new Army Chief, General Raheel Sharif. Operating within the constraints placed on him by a society politically and socially divisive on the issue of whether to fight or not, he seems to have gone for what looks like the American strategy of using force in a particular area, combining actionable intelligence with air strikes. The idea appears to eschew the strategy of a surge as a precursor to a sweeping operation and instead relies on degrading the leadership at various levels of command. In some cases, airstrikes could also be supplemented with selective hits through small-unit ground ops, including taking out Taliban commanders. On the plus side, this approach takes care of the problem of population displacements which creates its own political, social, psychological and logistical complications. On the minus side it increases the risk of collateral damage if the strikes are not precise, despite being accurate. The success of an airstrike depends as much on the integrity of intelligence as on the ability of the pilot to engage the target. And while accuracy depends on the pilot's ability to destroy a target on the ground, the integrity of intelligence which combines the elements of C4ISR (Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance) decides if the strike was precise. The difference between accuracy and precision is, therefore, important. A sniper can accurately take out a target but if the target identification is wrong, the shot is not precise and the sniper has ended up accurately taking out a wrong target. For now it is unclear whether the current strategy is being used to make space for talking to the groups from a position of strength or whether this will become the new doctrine. Some minuses must, however, be put on the table if this were to become the preferred option. Taking out targets from the air, or even through small-unit ground operations, is at best tactical unless it can begin to degrade the capacity of the groups to mount reprisal attacks in the urban centres or force them to talk more meaningfully and on the terms dictated by the state. This should be clear from tactically effective night raids conducted by the Americans in Afghanistan and also drone strikes. Neither has helped the Americans in defeating the Taliban groups strategically.

Yet another problem has to do with the point raised earlier apropos of the use of air force. While high-speed fighter jets can take out infrastructure and compounds on the ground, they cannot be very useful against a dispersed enemy or even defences and hideouts in the mountains. Jet fighters are not only very expensive in terms of the cost per flight hour, as opposed to combat drones, but do not have the luxury of loiter time like the drones. This is one reason helicopter gunships have been relatively more useful when employed properly, though that has not always been the case. Given these and other reasons, which are outside the scope of this article, it is important to analyse how effective the aerial platforms have been. Recent employment of more advanced drones for ISR purposes is, however, likely to improve the precision of aerial strikes. Emerging evidence from communication intercepts in the wake of strikes in North and South Waziristan, as also in Tirah in the Khyber Agency, indicates that the military's capacity for precision aerial strikes has improved. The Centre of Gravity (CoG) in any such conflict is the people. The use of force, therefore, must be supported by a narrative if people are to be convinced by the state of its narrative. As Capt. Emile Simpson of the 1st Battalion the Royal Gurkha Regiment writes in one of the best books to come out recently on war theory, 21st century combat is about politics. Simpson argues that any “use of the armed force that directly seeks political, as opposed to specifically military, outcomes … lies beyond the scope of war in its traditional paradigm”. Simpson realises that irregular war or what General Rupert Smith called fighting among the people, is not a polarised contest between two sides. This is how he puts it: “Strategic confusion can result when conflicts characterised by competition between many actors in a fragmented political environment are shoehorned into a traditional concept of war, with its two polarised sides. This fragmented competition may involve organised violence on a large scale, but is fundamentally different from war in the traditional sense: in many contemporary conflicts, armed force seeks to have a direct political effect on audiences rather than setting condition for a political solution through military effect against the enemy.” The effect of any new doctrine has, therefore, to be seen not just on the enemy but on multiple audiences. That is what makes this kind of conflict so complex. Additionally, we have to see how the enemy will react to a particular strategy. As Clausewitz assessed so incisively, the application of force on an animate object is very different because there are only finite ways in which we can judge how the enemy will react to the application of force. Military history has proven time and time again that the enemy generally has a bad habit of reacting in ways that cannot be entirely predicted. Napoleon learnt this twice, once in Spain and then on his march back from Moscow. Simpson has a vignette in his book which is instructive: “In April 1975 in Hanoi, a week before the fall of Saigon, Colonel Harry Summers of the U.S. Army told his North Vietnamese counterpart Colonel Tu, 'You never beat us on the battlefield', to which Tu replied, 'That may be so, but it is also irrelevant'.”

This is not to say that force must never be applied or that a state must feel hamstrung and go into inertia. But these thoughts must inform the formulation of a national security strategy and its sub-sets of a national military and operational strategy. The other lesson in this is that CT Mil Ops are just one end of this effort. The war requires, at the other end, equally effective CT Police Ops. The third most important aspect is the narrative: how does the state engage the audience. This is crucial because the insurgent/terrorist groups are not just using violence; they are also engaging the same audience. It is psychological war and it determines and calculates success differently from what happens on the field. The fourth element relates to understanding the fact that the state has to use a multi-pronged strategy to deal with the threat. For instance, while force can be used directly in several ways, it can be supplemented by attacking the funds and other supplies of the enemy. Money, weapons, acquisition of explosives and ammunition, vehicles and other materials require resources and supply chains. This is the oxygen that keeps the enemy going. To de-oxygenate the terrorists, it is crucial to deny him these resources. Just like own forces have to replenish, the enemy also faces wear and tear of equipment. Its fighters have to rest and retrofit; it has to take care of its wounded. He must be hit at these weak spots. Putting pressure on his logistics is, therefore, vital. Doing so requires outstanding intelligence work supplemented with pro-active operations. Finally, the people themselves have to understand the nature of the threat. The security forces can only do this much and no more. To cite one example of what this means, I quote here from what I wrote for Al-Jazeera English in July 2013 after the draft of the Abbottabad Commission Report (ACR) was leaked to that channel: “The ACR, in trying to connect the dots, comes up with a very important observation: an effective security policy, while improving the capacity of the police, must go beyond a narrow definition of security and, by implication, a CT strategy. “Let's take the bin Laden case to see the various stages where his presence could have been detected. The land for his compound in Abbottabad was purchased through a bogus identity card. This means that Ibrahim, one of the Kuwaiti brothers who bought the land, managed to stay outside Pakistan's digital database and by doing that remained untraceable. The building plan for the house was approved illegally and Ibrahim avoided paying the property tax for the entire duration that bin Laden lived in that house. The essential point in this story is that Ibrahim managed to take care of basic logistics, undetected, through illegal dealings with functionaries of the state.

“Now turn this around. Imagine that Ibrahim could not secure the land the way he did. Imagine also that his attempt to purchase the land illegally had him caught at that stage. Suppose that he had managed to cross the first hurdle. The next snag would have been to get the building plan approved. Let's assume that he had to submit a plan according to the requirements. If he were to then construct the house in violation of the original plan, he could be caught doing so by the inspectors who are supposed to inspect the site during the various phases of construction. One can go on. “None of this happened, of course. From the first person who got his palms greased to subsequent stages involving other functionaries, everyone got his share and helped Ibrahim and his master stay below the radar. None of these functionaries was performing the hard-security job and yet, as should be evident, every one of them was essential to detecting the presence of a wanted man.” There are ways in which this can be corrected, not entirely but to a large extent. What is important to note is that in formulating strategies, we must appreciate the situation rather than situating the appreciation. And appreciating the situation will tell us that we need to evolve multiple strategies that address the problem in the short- to medium- and the long-term.

The writer was a Ford Scholar at the Programme in Arms Control, Disarmament and International Security at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (1997) and a Visiting Fellow at the Brookings Institution in Washington D.C. (2002-03). He is currently Editor, National Security Affairs, at a private TV channel and contributes to several publications. Twitter: @ejazhaider

Written By: Dr Hasan Askari Rizvi

Change is the essence of global politics. The challenge for a state is to recognize the changing trends and make necessary adjustments in its approach to other countries and the global system. The broad goals of a state may remain unaltered, the strategies have to be updated to effectively address the new challenges and make use of opportunities. The global system has experienced rapid changes since 1990-91. The Cold War between the Soviet Union and the United States formally ended (1990) and the Union disintegrated (1991). This article provides an overview of the current global order and how it changed over time. This is followed by a brief discussion of the challenges faced by Pakistan in the transformed world order. Current Global Order

The current global order can be described as Uni-Multipolar. The United States is the strongest military power and its options in world affairs have increased. However, it is no longer possible for the U.S. to pursue its global or regional agendas all by itself. Other important players have emerged on the political scene in the second decade of the 21st Century. These are the European Union and China. Japan is an economic power and Russia is endeavouring to cultivate an autonomous role at the global level. Some states have gained economic, political and security-related prominence with reference to specific regions, i.e. India, Pakistan, South Korea, Saudi Arabia, Nigeria and a few others. This means that despite the military superiority of the U.S., a host of other powers are relevant to global politics. When we look beyond the U.S., the global order is multipolar. The U.S. has to negotiate with the European Union, China and Russia to build support for its policies at the global level or at least neutralize their opposition. When some region-specific issues are taken up, the U.S. has to build support or neutralize opposition from the major regional states. Without negotiations and coalition building with these players, especially the European Union, China and Russia, it is problematic for the U.S. to pursue its global agenda.

The constraints on the U.S. clout in the international system in the second decade of the 21st Century reflects the changes that have taken place since 1991-92. The U.S. was the sole superpower in the 1990s in the absence of any countervailing global power. The Soviet dominated Eastern Europe had collapsed in 1989-91 and the U.S. was able to use its military power to expel Iraq's troops from Kuwait (January-February 1991). This was followed by the dissolution of the Soviet Union by the end of 1991. The U.S. was the sole superpower with overwhelming military, economic and diplomatic clout. However, the U.S. could not sustain its overwhelming clout in the second decade of the 21st Century for the reasons to be discussed in the next section. Other players in the international system gained enough economic and political power to question the U.S. unilateral approach towards global and regional issues.

For any major military action at the global level, the U.S. or the western countries have to create a broadly-based coalition of support among the major players and the key states in the region concerned. Diplomacy and positive interaction at the international level has gained greater importance. If a country like the U.S. has to build issue-oriented partnerships, the role of diplomacy and positive interaction at the global level becomes extremely important for other countries like Pakistan that need to cope with international pressures caused by the agendas of more powerful states. The World Order today cannot be managed from one point. It has become more unmanageable because more players are involved in managing the global affairs. The U.S. alone cannot dictate term or charter its course of action at the global level. The support of the powerful regional states has become important for managing intra-state or inter-state conflicts.

Other Features of World Order in the Second Decade of 21st Century There are no permanent ideological partnerships or conflicts at the global level. There are no permanent dividing political or ideological lines that existed during the days of the Cold War between the Soviet/Communist bloc and the capitalist West led by the U.S. Now, the states work with each other on the basis of shared political and security agendas or with reference to specific issues. When political and security agenda or context changes or new issues arise the states seek cooperation afresh. It is a common experience to see two states cooperating with each other on some regional and global issues but these may diverge when a new issue arises. Therefore, positive and negative interaction can go on between two states concurrently or their relationship can change over time.

The relationship between the U.S. and China reflects positive and negative trends simultaneously. The trade between the two countries has expanded over the years and China has done investment in the U.S. Similarly, U.S. multinational corporations have made investment in China. The U.S. views China as an important market and Chinese products are easily available in the U.S. When these states disagree on some global and regional issue their bilateral economic and political relations are not disrupted. China and India have frozen their border dispute for the time being and their bilateral trade has expanded manifold during the last ten years. The U.S. and Russian relations manifest positive and negative trends more or less concurrently. They diverge on a number of global and regional issues but this does not interrupt their bilateral political relations. What keeps these relations away from a total breakdown is the ideological thaw and a continuous diplomatic interaction among these states on their differences. Current international political order is greatly influenced by globalization which emphasizes movement of people, goods, services and ideas across the

territorial boundaries of states. The dramatic changes in the fields of Communication, Media and Information Technology have multiplied opportunities of international interaction that has increased interdependence among states. Different states and societies can influence and penetrate each other more than ever because of information avalanche and the movement of people or their ideas across the world. A state can acquire importance in the international system if it has stable socio-political conditions and potential for trade and investment. Do other countries view it as an attractive market for their goods? What matters most is what can be described as economic and trade relevance of a country either as a venue for investment and trade or a transit route for goods to other neighbouring states. Regional cooperation for trade, investment and exchange of services has become an important feature of the global order for the last two decades. There is a lot more encouragement to trade and investment within a region which tends to benefit all states in the regional economic cooperative arrangements. The needs of economic and trade cooperation often impel the states to defuse their political disputes. Transnational terrorist activity has impacted global politics than anything else since the terrorist attacks in the U.S. in September 2001. This posed a different type of security threat to the U.S. and the rest of the world, especially the West. In this case the adversary could not be easily located because of its transnational non-state character. The conventional military power could not be effectively used to tackle such groups because these were dispersed in more than one country.

Transnational terrorism produced two major responses: First, the United Nations passed resolutions in the Security Council and the General Assembly demanding cooperation from the member states to control terrorist groups’ activity. Second, the U.S was able to build a global coalition that included western as well as a large number of non-western states for countering transnational terrorism. Since the U.S. military action in Afghanistan in October-November 2001, terrorism has continued to stay as one of the principal agenda at the global level. Despite the efforts by states, individually and collectively, violence and terrorism continue to haunt the international system. Pakistan's decision to join the global coalition to fight terrorism angered the Taliban and other militant groups based in Afghanistan and Pakistan which began to resort to violence against Pakistan to deter it from countering terrorists' groups with international cooperation. This adversely affected Pakistan's internal peace, stability and economic development. Radical Islamic movements are the major players in transnational terrorist activity that rely on traditional Islamic scripture to justify their violent activity–a claim disputed by a large number of Islamic scholars and societal leaders in the Muslim states. These groups project their violent activity as an ideological struggle with two dimensions. This is described as a struggle to fight the Western states and their culture that are undermining Islam and Muslim societies. The West in general, and the U.S. in particular, are viewed as the enemies of Islam and the Muslims. The other dimension of this struggle focuses on Muslim societies. These radical Islamic movements contest other Islamic groups for asserting their claim that they represent genuine and puritanical Islam. These groups also endeavour to transform Muslim society into a genuinely Islamic Sharia-based system as articulated by them. Therefore, Islamic militancy has adversely affected not only the relations between Muslim states and the West but it has also caused internal disruption in many Muslim states. This clash has reduced the capacity of the affected Muslim states to cope with the pressures of the changed international order.

There are no permanent political and ideological alignments at the global level and the success of a state in pursuing its agenda at the international level depends on its ability to make itself positively relevant to other states. It needs to mobilize support for itself at the international level and cultivate partnerships. A state can achieve these goals if it has internal socio-political coherence and stable economy that links it to the international community through trade and economic interaction. Isolation from the international system is not an option for the states like Pakistan that face internal and external security challenges. The more a country is isolated the less are its chances to function effectively in the present day global order and protect its national interests. Engagement is the key to expanding a country's options at the global level. However, the capacity for engagement depends on a country's internal socio-political stability and economic resilience. Major Reasons for the Changes in the Global Order The end of the Second World War in 1945 set the stage for major transformation in international politics. The Western allies gave attention to post-war reconstruction and rehabilitation of Europe, Japan and East Asia. European colonialism began to decline with the beginning of the decolonization process as India and Pakistan became independent of British rule in August 1947. The most significant development was the gradual rise of political competition between the Western states led by the U.S. and the Soviet Union for building influence and control primarily in the war-ravaged Europe. This competition which had strong ideological (Communism versus Western Capitalism and Liberal Democracy) and military character turned out to be the major feature of global politics until 1990, described as the Cold War. It was not merely confined to the Europe which was practically divided into Western and Soviet blocs but the U.S. and the Soviet Union competed for influence in other continents for building partnerships with the states, especially those getting independence in the post-World War period, or dissuading these states from joining the rival political camp.

There were changes in the methods and strategies of competition between the Soviet Union and the U.S. from a tough and interventionist approaches to subtle methods for pursuing their respective ideological Cold War agendas. Some softening of attitude and détente reduced competition but the Cold War worldview continued to dominate the world order. The two super powers, the U.S., and the Soviet Union, often judged the policies of other states or built partnership from the perspective of their respective interests in the Cold War competition. Those not siding with the either side were often viewed with distrust by both sides. The pressure of the competition between the two superpowers on other states decreased when the former pursued rapprochement and limited accommodation in their mutual interaction, although not abandoning their competition at the bilateral, regional and global levels. The Cold War world order began to unravel when the Eastern European states revolted against the Soviet dominated political arrangements in 1989-91. The reunification of Germany on October 3, 1990 and the Soviet decision to accept it quietly was a major western success. This was accompanied by political uprising against Soviet control in most other Eastern European states for the reasons that are beyond the scope of this article. On November 19, 1990, leaders of 22 members of the NATO and the WARSAW Pact met in Paris to sign an agreement to reduce non-nuclear arsenal, declaring that “they are no longer adversaries, [and] will build new partnerships and extend to each other the hand of friendship.” (International Herald Tribune, November 20, 1990). These leaders were joined later by 12 other countries for a summit for peace amity, free elections and free economy. This is often described as the formal end of the Cold War. The WARSAW Pact was abandoned in February 1991. The U.S was able to create a broadly-based coalition for military action to push out Saddam Hussein (Iraqi) troops from Kuwait (January-February 1991). On December 26, 1991, the Soviet Union was dissolved and the Russian Federation replaced it. Its republics in Central Asia and elsewhere on Soviet periphery formally became independent. Some of these states had already announced independence from the Soviet Union. This was the period of Western/U.S. triumph and the U.S. President talked of the New World Order that emphasized western democratic values and free economy. The intellectuals in the U.S. began to talk of the “End of History” and the ultimate triumph of participatory democracy and liberal (capitalist) economy.

The U.S. launched air attack on Afghanistan with the endorsement of the United Nations in October-November 2001 in retaliation to the Taliban policy of protecting the Al-Qaeda that claimed responsibility for the terrorist attacks in the U.S. on September 11, 2001. It installed a pro-U.S. government led by Hamid Karzai in Kabul in December 2001. Instead of giving full attention to Afghanistan's economic reconstruction and rehabilitation to ensure a better and safer future for the people of Afghanistan, the U.S. decided in March 2003 to launch a military operation to dislodge the Saddam Hussein government in Iraq. There was no endorsement of the United Nations for the military operation in Iraq. The U.S. advanced the doctrines of “unilateral action” and “Preemption” to check the threats to its national interests all over the world. Afghanistan and Iraq showed the outreach of American military power. Its power was at the peak in the global system in 2001-2003. However, the post-invasion issues in these countries and a host of other issues set the stage for sliding down of the U.S. from the top of the global power ladder. The rise of transnational terrorism that primarily targeted the U.S. interests created a new set of challenges for the Western countries in general and the U.S. in particular. A number of non-Western and Muslim countries also experienced terrorism. This led the U.S. in the post-2004 period to seek greater international cooperation to fight terrorism. As the initial military successes in Afghanistan and Iraq were compromised with the revival of terrorist activities in these countries and elsewhere, the U.S. was obliged to seek the cooperation of other states to cope with the terrorist challenge. In spite of being the sole super power, it had to recognize the limits of its power. This was the beginning of a more active role by other major powers at the global level. This compelled the U.S. to build global and regional partnerships rather than going all alone. This was a decline of the U.S. pre-eminence it enjoyed in the 1990s but it continues to enjoy a commanding role because no other power has replaced it or directly challenged its pre-eminence. However, it has to work with other states, increasing the importance of diplomacy and engagement at the global and regional levels. Options for Pakistan

Pakistan faces a difficult global and regional situation. Internally, the state and society are threatened by religious extremism and terrorism. A number of militant groups openly challenge the writ of the state. The spillover of the internal strife in Afghanistan has created serious security problems for Pakistan. The traditional distrust and unresolved problems continue to haunt India-Pakistan relations. However, Pakistan's internal security problems and troubled economy constitute a bigger threat because these undermine societal cohesion and political stability as well as adversely affect Pakistan's capacity to cope with external challenges. The role and position of a state at the regional and international level is greatly shaped by two factors in the present day global system. First, internal political stability and cohesion and economic resilience increase the capacity of a state to counter external pressures and increase its options. Second, how relevant is a state for global economic interaction. This includes its trade relations, accessibility of its market to other countries and foreign investment. Strong economic linkages defuse bilateral tensions and strengthen a state's role at the global level. International trade and investment are possible if the state has political stability and a secure investment environment as well as the availability of infra-structure facilities, especially energy, and rationalized bureaucratic procedures. Foreign investors also monitor the quantum of local investment to judge the security and safety for foreign investments and investors. Pakistan must assign the highest priority to increase its economic and trade relevance for the international community. This objective cannot be achieved without working earnestly for creation of a stable and secure domestic environment by controlling internal violence and terrorism and putting its economic house in order by reviving its industrial and business sectors. This will draw more foreign investment and which will in turn boost its economy.

Greater attention needs to be given to strengthening economic and trade relations in the region. Pakistan’s improving trade and economic relations with India and other neighbouring states should be seen in this context. Pakistan can learn from China's India policy. Despite territorial disputes and political differences China has developed strong economic and trade relations with India. China has also developed trade and human interaction with Taiwan, although it views it as a breakaway province that needs to be brought back into China. A large number of Pakistani political elite and political activists continue to view global politics in the Cold War context of power blocs and permanent enmity or enduring friendships. That is why some people in Pakistan periodically talk of creating an anti-U.S. bloc by Pakistan, China and Russia. The era of permanent ideological divides and everlasting partnerships has come to an end. It is futile to view a country as a permanent friend or permanent adversary. The relationships are need-oriented and functional. Pakistan need to build relationships with all major powers on “need basis” rather than expecting other countries to adopt Pakistan's global and regional agenda as a pre-condition for good relations. Mutually advantageous relationship can be cultivated through astute and active diplomacy. Identify commonalities and reduce differences with other countries. The positive experience of mutual interaction over the years expands the areas of commonalities and reduces disagreements. In one dominant 'Foreign Policy Perspective', any foreign country developing active relations with India is looked at with suspicion and doubt. Pakistan's foreign policy needs to reduce any country specific obsession and develop relations with other states on mutually beneficial considerations. Domestic and international politics should not be viewed as a function of religion. There are no purely religious wars or purely religion based friendship in the present-day world. Pakistan may emphasize common religion and culture with Muslim states, especially those from the Middle East. However, this cannot be a basis of enduring relationship unless other and practical considerations are developed in terms of political, security, economic and trade interests. Bilateral relations can be strengthened by transfer of technology, exchange of qualified human power and promotion of non-official societal linkages.

The projection of global politics in terms of Islam and the Muslims versus the West led by the U.S., or viewing it as a “clash of civilizations” distorts the realities of international politics. It is an erroneous perception that there is an intrinsic hostility between Islamic Pakistan and the non-Muslim world, and that some powerful states like the U.S. and other western states are out to destabilize or destroy Pakistan. Such a perception may fulfil the ideological agenda of some Pakistani political groups that continue to pursue ideological conflict in domestic politics and foreign policy at a time when ideology has lost salience in world politics. The attitude of hostility towards the states diverging from your worldview strengthens ultra-nationalism in the domestic context and results in isolationism at the global level. Isolationism is not an option for Pakistan. It needs to cultivate friendly interaction with as many countries as possible if it wants to cope with internal and external challenges. It must also pursue active diplomacy in international and regional organizations and global conferences. Such an activism provides a good opportunity to remove misperceptions about Pakistan and secure goodwill for itself. For example, participation of Pakistan military in the UN Peacekeeping Operations helps to build the reputation of the Pakistani military at the international level and it brings credit to Pakistan. Positive engagement with the international community is a continuous process. This needs to be renewed regularly through active official and non-official diplomacy in political, economic and trade, socio-cultural and security domains.

The writer is an eminent defence and security analyst who regularly contributes in national/international media. (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)

Asif Jehangir Raja

Q1. You were born in England and have your roots in Pakistan. Please tell us something about your upbringing and family background.

amir2Answer: My family is originally from Matore in Pakistan. It is a town in Tehsil Kahuta, District Rawalpindi. This is where my grandparents came from and I still have many relatives and family living there today. I am from Rajput family and I am very proud of having a Pakistani background.

I try to visit my home back often when I am not training or busy working. My grandparents moved to the United Kingdom in the 1960s, like many did from Pakistan due to the economic opportunities at that time.

My family is settled in Bolton, which is in the North West of England, near Manchester, and we have been here ever since.

Q2. From a child to winning WBA Light Welterweight title at the tender age of 22, your life appears to have seen successes too early too quick. How has this journey been all along?

Answer: It's been a great journey and one that I am very proud of. It started at a young age by winning an Olympic Silver Medal when I was 17 and since then it's just got better and better.

I won the World Boxing Association (WBA) Light-Welterweight title and then I also beat Zab Judah to win the International Boxing Federation (IBF) belt which is another recognised world title. I've shared the ring with some great fighters and fought on some huge shows in America so I am pleased with how my career has developed.

Q3. Having your roots from a country that has the passion and love for Cricket and Hockey, how did you manage to become a boxer?

Answer: My father took me to the gym when I was eight because I was so hyperactive and he thought this would help burn all my energy. He was right – it did – but I also grew to love boxing and I couldn't wait to go to the gym everyday to workout and learn. Boxing has always been my passion above any other sport.

Q4. What takes it to become a world boxing champion?

Answer: I think talent and hardwork. Without either it's not possible to become a world champion. It doesn't matter how much natural amir3talent you have, you have to work very hard and put in a lot of work to get to the very top.

Q5. You challenged Floyd Mayweather from USA, who is an undefeated boxing champion, an action that is appreciated by people around the world. Please share your feelings with us.

Answer: It's my dream to be in the biggest and best fights and at the moment Floyd Mayweather is regarded as the best fighter on the planet. I would love to fight him if the opportunity was there because I think it would be a great match up and very exciting for the fans. I have the tools to test any fighter and I believe with my speed and style it would be a very interesting fight if it ever happens.

Q6. “A hard boxer in the ring is soft at heart and loves his wife, Faryal Makhdom.” How do you explain this statement?

Answer: I got married last year and I am very happy. Faryal definitely brings out the softer side in me and we're extremely happy together. She's very special to me and the time we've been together has been the happiest of my life.

Q7. Please share with us memories of your best bout.

Answer: I would say when I beat Andriy Kotelnik to win my first world title, has so far been the best one. It was always my dream to become a world champion and to win the WBA belt was unbelievable because all the hardwork over the years to realise this dream had finally paid off. I was perfect that night, stuck to the gameplan and dominated the fight over twelve rounds – I can't ever forget it.

Q8. What measure should be taken in Pakistan to promote the challenging game of boxing?

Answer: Boxing needs more investment from the government and authorities to help promote it and get the young kids to take it up. The country needs more gyms and qualified trainers and to make it accessible to everyone regardless of their economic background. That way boxing can flourish in the country and Pakistan can start developing fighters who are able to challenge at a higher level.

Q9. You have recently announced to make a Boxing Academy in Pakistan. How do you intend to take up this project?

Answer: We have a plan for how we want to develop it and bring boxing to all the people in Pakistan. This academy will be a start where we will have qualified trainers and excellent facilities and equipment for everyone to use. By doing this we hope to encourage young people to take up the sport and give it a try.

Q10. What are your future plans?

Answer: I just want to keep improving and be in the biggest fights possible. My aim now is to win another world title at a different weight and try and establish myself at the very top of the sport. That's what keeps driving me and keeps me motivated for the future.

Q11. What message shall you give to the youth of Pakistan through Hilal Magazine?

Answer: To have a goal, no matter what field or sport they are in, and work as hard as possible to achieve that aim. Hardwork and a vision will take you very far in life.


Maj Asif Jehangir Raja

Q: Briefly explain us the external and internal security challenges Pakistan is facing today? What and how should we prioritize the response so as not to lose balance against any of the foes?

Answer: Pakistan is bedeviled by both external and internal challenges at present. The departure of US Forces from Afghanistan by the end of 2014, after having left behind a small force, will impact the internal and external security matrix of Pakistan. It will be a key thing for Pakistan to watch that things develop smoothly in Afghanistan because if, for any reason, it doesn't stabilize and continues to be riddled with uncertainties in the aftermath of a decade long stay of NATO / ISAF, and an internal strife develops just as it happened in 1989, it will definitely have very negative implications on Pakistan's internal security situation. Pakistan would have liked internal peace process for stability in Afghanistan to commence; but that isn't the case and Bilateral Security Agreement (BSA) between USA and Afghanistan hasn't been signed as yet. One can assume about presence of some American Forces in Afghanistan after 2014 but uncertainties those prevail in Afghanistan can make things difficult for our country and lack of stability in Afghanistan will have impact on Pakistan.

The border management between Afghanistan and Pakistan will be another key to our need for domestic stability. After different operations in FATA and Swat by Pak Army, most of these terrorists crossed over the border and moved to Kunar and Nuristan regions of Afghanistan. And even now, if there is an operation in North Waziristan, the terrorists may still move into ungoverned adjacent areas of Afghanistan located on the border areas with Pakistan. This shall mean a continuous interference from outside into Pakistan's territory. Another concern is Afghanistan's proxy meddling in Pakistan. Afghans have been alleging Pakistan as responsible for few incidents of violence in their territory but what is more alarming, are the reports of Afghan groups, or Afghan sponsored groups, carrying out activities inside Pakistan.

India is always there as a point of concern for us simply because two third of its forces continue to be deployed along its borders with Pakistan. Although Pakistan has pulled out some of its forces from Eastern border, however, Pakistan will continue to very consciously watch its East. This is how I view the external security challenges to Pakistan.

On the internal front, Pakistan has even bigger challenges. I shall briefly recount each one of these. First is the lack of governance and air marshal2enfeebled capacity to administer within the Pakistani state. As a result it has begun to appear weak, irresolute, incapable of functioning even averagely. This situation is posing few questions into the minds of people of Pakistan as the basic contract of the state with its citizens and people is under question. Next most dominating and prevalent problem for Pakistan is terrorism which will also continue to bother us for sometime because of being multidimensional. The inability to respond to it properly during last few years shows the state in very poor light. In addition to these problems include economic issues, division within society; add to it the poor polity, the confrontation within institutions and perceptions arising out of military takeovers. These things have divided the body of our society which remains a very pervasive threat to our cohesion. The culture of radicalism, extremism and terrorism is manifested in the guulies & coochas (streets & lanes) of our cities. So you need to have a very comprehensive way of looking at security of Pakistan. If we think that only through policy of non-interference in Afghanistan and conducting operation in FATA and North Waziristan, we are at peace No we aren't. The challenges are huge. The leadership of today has much work to do. I don't see that happening. If military leadership is doing its work and keeping things in order in their domain, it's like an island among others who have, frankly, gone astray. We need to somehow bring the entire system back into resonance.

Q. In post-9/11 scenario, Pakistan was left with little choices but to combat terrorism to stay aligned with the world community. Today, after fighting this war for over thirteen years, the international forces are scheduled to leave Afghanistan by the end of this year. Where do you see the “War on Terror” going in internal and external context?

Answer: There are certain things that have happened on the world map, particularly in the cultural or civilizational context. For example, where does Al-Qaeda stand today? Is Al-Qaeda a dead phenomenon? Will it survive as a movement? How many ideologues continue to populate it? What kind of leadership influence will they exercise? Will it have a leadership that will justly replace Osama Bin Laden's (OBL) bent of mind? Even if he was a passive figure, he was important for Al-Qaeda movement to generate ideas and thoughts the world over in Muslims. A question may be asked that why do people of Islam feel wronged? Why should they fall for something as populist or driven as OBL espoused? Simply because there are problems in Islam and in Muslim nations which have not been resolved for a long time. Palestine being one; Iraq and the wrongs there are another; Arab Spring creating this tumult in the Arab world. This is a cause of concern for Muslims all over the world, at least in their perception. Secondly, many of the Middle Eastern nations have been autocratic. People have been led by monarchies and dictators for years and decades; and in most cases have remained oppressed. A democratic order has rarely been practiced in true spirit. This has given cause to cleavages within the Muslim world; others have tended to exploit these. The induction of social media and the internet enabled people to galvanise ideas and movements against such repression. Unless given their rights people have this tendency to resort to force; they could also be encouraged to adopt militancy as a way of fighting for their cause. A pervasiveness of such trends, mostly in the Islamic world, tends to grant it a civilisational hue.

If leadership remains available to this trend of movements in the Islamic world, I see it going either way: remaining political and agitational to earn political rights; or, remaining tied to the militant ways to spawn a persisting Al Qaeda type phenomenon. We should know how terrorism comes about? Radicalisation in a society converts to extremism. Extremists then pick up arms and becomes militants which then resorts to terror to impose their will. There are enough number of people who fund this entire franchise. Therefore you may see that Al-Qaeda will stay, so terrorism might also stay.

Internally for Pakistan: one, Afghanistan needs to stabilize. Two, proxy wars on sectarian lines between Islamic countries must not let to be fought on the soil of Pakistan. It has to be stopped. Third, all ends must be secured to cover our internal dimensions, as I explained in one of my earlier responses. The link of radicalism and terrorism and how it connects, from where does the money comes in, how effective are our laws, how effectively we prosecute terrorists and how quickly we convict and punish them. Deterrence of the real value needs to be put into place. And only then can we control this menace. Framing of law and then law enforcement will be the key to managing our internal security situation.

Terrorism will stay in Pakistan till the time our policy structures, government structures, governance and administrative structures develop capacity and ability to fight this menace. Unfortunately it is not going to get away so easily. Terrorism will have to be fought and won against. We will have to integrate the clergy and Ulema in developing a narrative that defies radicalism and extremism from our midst. Only when these divisions are finished and the nation becomes one, will it then have the capacity to fight the threat of terrorism.

Q. “Dialogue and Deterrence” is a visible strategy on scene in the current war with violent forces in Pakistan. How we need to strategize the both so as to ensure peace for the people within constitutional domains of a democratic, free and pluralistic Pakistan?

Answer: There are two dimensions of terrorism in Pakistan. One is terrorism at the borders and fringes; for example, FATA, North Waziristan, provinces of Kunar and Nuristan towards other side of the border, and four other provinces of Afghanistan with Pakistan including Paktia, Paktika, Nangarhar and Khost. These six provinces can be a cause for future trouble for Pakistan unless we handle here-on our matters with extremists in FATA. Since all of this is the border regions, there management becomes important and imperative.

When people say that forces should be withdrawn from North Waziristan as part of quid pro quo for peace in FATA and North Waziristan, it becomes a non starter. You will need the army in these regions on a more sustainable basis to control the borders and ensure peace. We need to cross the rubicon of tradition and place our military in FATA. We may even have to establish permanent garrisons in the troubled areas. There is already military presence in that area and we will need to add numbers to ensure better management of borders. Currently the state is trying to work out whether the dialogue works? If the indicators aren't there, there are alternate options. The retaliatory air strikes were just a glimpse of what can follow.

Third aspect is to fight terrorism inside our own nation. The internal security policy that this government came out with few days back is not a bad way to start but it is still incomplete. The issue is not simply about police, civil bureaucracy, religion and Madrassah. It is actually aimed at changing ethos of this nation where we are able to recognize and understand, as a nation, about a threat which endangers all as a society. For example, if I need to rent away a house, I must make sure it has not been rented to the wrong people. Similarly these terrorists come to the cities and hire transport or even buy it for their ulterior purposes. People must have the awareness to report the matter to the police and the agencies. I was in England in 1992 for few years. Those were the days when Irish Republican Army (IRA) issue was at its peak. I saw the whole British nation aware and sensitive to their societal responsibilities. We, unfortunately, as a society do not have this kind of discipline, awareness, education or ethos to be able to think of a problem on these lines. We will have to change this culture. It is not your problem, my problem or even his; it is problem of every member of this nation. This is an area that our leadership has not been able to ingrain in our people and to introduce it as a culture. There cannot be any compromise on the Constitution of Pakistan. There cannot be any compromise on geographical entity of Pakistan. There cannot be a compromise on system of governance in Pakistan. Even if someone wants to impose Sharia, it must be done through Constitutional means. We have the Shariat Court; we have Council of Islamic Ideology (CII); no doubt there are areas that we may need to work on but simply stating that ours is not an Islamic Republic is perhaps the biggest of the fallacies that anyone can generate in the minds of public. We are very lucky to have a constitution that was agreed upon by all politicians, and all shades of religion, in 1973.

Q. You remained ambassador in Sri Lanka that fought a prolonged insurgency. What are the relevant lessons for Pakistan to successfully tackle the issues of terrorism and militancy?

Answer: Incidentally I assumed appointment of Ambassador when the operation against Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) had just begun and was concluded before completion of my tenure in 2009. During the insurgency period of almost 27 years, different Sri Lankan governments alternated between the options of dialogue and small operations with the insurgents. There had never been a full-fledged war meant to win it and most of the operations were conducted to recover the lost land. There is a famous Elephant Pass that connects Jaffna with areas dominated by (LTTE). This pass was the usual bone of contention; sometimes government would occupy it and sometimes LTTE, and the war went around that pass. Many of their military heroes are the ones who recovered this pass from LTTE and gave it back to the government. But no one actually took the war to the enemy.

Large part of North East of Sri Lanka was LTTE area which was without writ of the government, almost in the similar fashion that some of agencies in FATA are without it today. The current President of Sri Lanka, Mahinda Rajapaksa, who came in power in 2005, often stated that 'we need to do something to resolve LTTE issue'. The narrative was built, spread and suddenly, for a change, everyone in the system, government and public felt the same way and followed the line that they needed to do something about it. A tough army Commander appreciated the situation and assessed that LTTE could only be taken out by war. He decided to use this option of operation against the insurgents. Almost 30 months / 2.5 years of war was put into place. It was a full scale war in which entire area of North East and North Sri Lanka was recovered from LTTE and they were defeated.

What did Sri Lankans do to achieve it? It was through a clear-cut political resolve. They were under tremendous pressure; local pressure, external pressure from USA, Europe and, India, because almost 80 million Tamils live around the world who posed a serious challenge to the Sri Lankan government. But they sustained this pressure and gave free hand to their military to tackle the situation. They gave full support to their military, bought them new military hardware, aeroplanes, helicopters, revived their dead Air Force, and asked them to concentrate on war without worrying for external fronts. This was a milestone achievement by Sri Lankans and set a record of eliminating insurgency through war in the recent history. This operation has brought many positive results for that country; today you visit Sri Lanka, you find them reaping the benefits of peace. A country now on a much faster pace of development; fastest growing country in South Asia, and may even earn the status of the most developed country in South Asia in the next five years.

When you make decisions, you must stick to them. There is never a perfect solution to any problem. But you value your judgment based on where majority of the good lies, let your people stand behind it, stick to the task and any goal can be achieved. That is how nations work. You can't really dither between dialogue and operation and again dialogue, looking for an easier way. There is no easier way out; when you want something for your country you need to go on and work for it.

Q. War in Afghanistan is one of the reasons for many troubles in Pakistan. Where do you see Afghanistan in post-2014 scenario and what measures Pakistan should take to safeguard against any negative fallout?

Answer: Because of lack of peace process in Afghanistan, it leaves the situation very tenuous internally in terms of sustainability and stability of the political system. The Afghan National Army (ANA) does not have the capacity to do what NATO and ISAF have been doing for the past many years. Perhaps it will never attain that capability and quality. The way ANA has been formed, it needs approximately 4 to 5 billion dollars to sustain itself. Almost 90 % of the current budget of Afghanistan is pumped through external sources. USA and Europeans countries are spending an annual amount of approximately 13 billion dollars in Afghanistan. When they leave, most of this help will also go, leaving Afghanistan with approximately 10 billion dollars as total size of their economy, and she will have very little capacity to sustain the ANA. So this will make situation tenuous for Afghanistan internally and will make it untenable as a state, a situation that can create difficulties for Pakistan.

So fallout of post 2014 should be of great concern to us. What we could not do in 1989/1990, we need to do today. Manage this border very strongly and firmly. Hold the border regardless of the sensitivities that have in the past made it into a loose border. This is the time to try out and work out difficulties and find solutions to the issues that we have not been able to do in our earlier history with Afghanistan. We must convey to Afghanistan our need to manage our borders with them more effectively. But before doing this, Pakistan should also ensure elimination of terrorist in its tribal regions.

We also need to make sure that our cities, metropolises, Qasbas, towns and villages are taken care of. We have to ensure that police and bureaucracy are functioning well. Intelligence should be doing its job perfectly and needs to lead this drive against menace of terrorism. We should not interfere in Afghan internal matters, but ensure the sanctity of our own space. Beyond the sensitivity that neighbours might possess nations today are and must be run by own national interests.

Q. A “Two Front War” has worried many countries of the world in the past. How do you view Indian involvement in Afghanistan?

Answer: Our internal situation is what is going to give a cause for worry when we consider how India might become a concern with their increasing influence in Afghanistan. And more than Indians, it will be the Afghan Intelligence that is going to give us trouble. During the Karzai government Afghan Intelligence and Ministry of Interior have maintained a hostile stance against Pakistan. I feel that carryover of this sentiment will affect Pakistan badly in the days to come. As long as Balochistan, KPK and FATA are well governed and are politically more stable, rule of law is in place, economic dividends and benefits are transferred to the people, we will find that the cleavages that have impacted the society at large, and specially at these places where we either have a nationalist, religious or ideological anti-state sentiment, the capacity will automatically exist to fight off adverse external influence. <?p>

Q. Peace Dialogue with India has also not proceeded to any conclusive stage primarily due to Indian inflexible attitude on core issues. Contrarily, we also hear belligerent talk and witness offensive mindset manifesting in doctrines like Cold Start Doctrine (CSD). How much menacing is the threat from the Eastern neighbour with particular reference to rise of political Hindu chauvinism?

Answer: The arrival of Narendra Modi as a probable future Prime Minister of India has raised relevant concerns, not only for Pakistan, but also for India itself. He has invested much of political capital in trying to appease the extremist Right-Wing Hindu sentiment with his anti Pakistan rhetoric. When chosen as the PM he will find it difficult to distance himself from what he has already committed to. So when he has invested so much in playing with people's sentiments, he will have to play by rules that he had set for himself which in turn border at the hard-line. Another point to worry in such an eventuality is India and Pakistan being nuclear nations. These nations are historically put on a war path even with rhetoric as a starting point or as a starting trigger and then leading on to some clashes here and there and snowballing into an operational engagement. It can lead to what can be an unintended conflagration. I don't think Modi will go that way if he has any sense and I hope he displays that when sits as the Prime Minister. This is the philosophy of Hindu chauvinism driven by Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), and used by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to buy votes.

So if it becomes Modi's way of governing then it doesn't bode well for the region. But I hope when he becomes the Prime Minister, his thoughts of running the Indian state change. When Vajpayee, again from the BJP, took the chair in India, he was actually the one who initiated the move to improve relationship with Pakistan. Although Modi is not Vajapayee, but there is always a balance that responsibility brings into your way of looking at things. I hope that when he sits in that chair, he becomes more responsible.

The current environment between India and Pakistan has also changed a bit. It is a fact that there is history of our unresolved problems, territorial difficulties and political issues that have driven hostilities between both countries. Kashmir being what it is, a core issue, leaving it unresolved will mean a resident hostility which will keep coming to the surface. Not that Pakistan wants to go this way, but India too looks at Pakistan with great suspicion because of Kashmir. Then there is Siachen dispute, Sir Creek problem; post-Mumbai terrorism from the Indian standpoint has become an equally central issue. As of now, India only wants to talk about Trade & Terrorism with Pakistan and nothing else. In my assessment, in presence of all such issues, hostilities will continue between both countries.

Under a nuclear umbrella that gives strategic balance to this region conventional war of the way that we have known, is now not a possibility. That's why we find that both nations, in the eyes of neutral observers, have now gone on in unconventional ways of pursuing their political objectives. We blame Indians for what they do in Balochistan, FATA, KPK and Karachi, and correspondingly, Indians blame us for what has happened in Kashmir and Mumbai. So there is a whole history of defining this new paradigm of proxy engagement on both sides. That's how India-Pakistan equations look like today. Obviously this needs to be changed.

In my opinion, to move forward, you need to change the paradigm of issues that you get engaged on. For example, if you fix your engagement on Siachen, Sir Creek, Kashmir, terrorism etc, you will only talk against each other, you will talk at each other, but you never talk with each other. If you want to talk with each other in more cooperative ways then you need to replace these issues with more cooperative issues which can be; for example, caring for a common water source, which is the five rivers controlled through the Indus Water Treaty, and the glaciers which feed these rivers; resolving Siachen dispute, looking for options on Kashmir in a way that is acceptable to both sides, talking for methods of poverty alleviation, looking at reduction of diseases in both regions. We need to discover a common methodology to deal with issues which are common and which can foster cooperative approaches. For this though mindsets need to change in India. Mindsets have changed in Pakistan. But I don't see this happening very quickly in India, especially with Mr. Modi coming in.

Coming to two front scenario, I don't think India will have the capacity and ability to go over Pakistan and try to be a source of concern for Pakistan while being in Afghanistan. We need to look at our border control with adjacent regions, especially Afghanistan, and improve them. Secondly if we maintain good relations with Afghanistan we should being neighbours that will deny the Indians the opportunity to cause mischief from there. Even in our current situation of fighting internally against terrorism, their facilitated unrest in Balochistan and other areas has not caused the state to unravel, I therefore don't see any greater Indian capacity or ability to do much damage to Pakistan. As a strong and resilient nation, we should try to ensure that these things don't impact us.

Q. Being an Air Force officer, how do you view capabilities of Indian Air Force, its likely role in the Cold Start Doctrine (CSD) and suggested counter measures?

Answer: When nations know that they can't fight a regular war then they will resort to alternate strategies. A nation as large as India with huge Armed Forces, if it resorts to a strategy like Cold Start, it will remain a defeatist application without any hinged political objective. It might allow Indian forces penetration of ten to fifteen kilometers depending upon the area, but is unlikely to provide strategic dividends. Every nation goes to war or imposes force with clear political objectives but what shall India gain after occupying shallow depths, if at all. Pakistan could react similarly. I do not see much operational sense in resorting to CSD. It is defeatist way of applying force. It is not how nations should apply military force.

Armed forces are meant to provide you the capability to support your politico-military objectives. The Indian Navy may have a political objective of dominating the Indian Ocean, but the Pakistani Navy has no such matching political objective to pursue. Both Navies are therefore structured accordingly. Armed forces are sized, trained and organized to deliver their specific politico-military goals. Similarly our Air Force has a specific role to play. For that role, it has been trained, equipped and resourced. Indian Air Force (IAF) has its own objectives. No doubt that IAF has made some significant addition to their capacity and capability in last ten to fifteen years. India for the last five years is the largest buyer of military hardware and equipment all over the world. Indian Defence Budget is more than the total budget of Pakistan. Their goals and objectives are different from those of Pakistan and they structure their forces thus.

Q. Your comments on Indo-US Strategic Partnership and its impact on regional stability?

Answer: USA has been trying to woo India for strategic partnership for a long time. India now has liquidity (money) available to them. This money drives everyone in the world. The Chinese have the biggest amount of cash available to them. This is the reason that US, despite how competitive they feel with China, have closest economic relations with them. They are not going to go to war with China simply because of the reason that they get loans and investments from them. Same is the case with India. Americans have been trying to attract Indians by offering them fighters, transport aeroplanes, artillery pieces etc. Indians have been smart in a way that they have kept Americans at a distance and have also retained their relationship with Russians. Because still 90% of Indian military inventory is Russian based and they need relations with them for sustainability of their equipment. Indo-US Nuclear Deal is of much greater concern to us. Because by striking this deal, US has granted a de-jure acceptability to India as a nuclear nation with options to trade in nuclear materials with many countries of the world which form part of Nuclear Supplier Group (NSG). Although both India and Pakistan have strategic and nuclear balance, but implicit acceptance of India as a legitimate nuclear power while denying the same to Pakistan is a matter of concern to us.

Dynamics are changing world over. The relationships are becoming much more realistic. What nations need, determines their relationship with the other states. We should not be shy of accepting the fact that while India will have much greater circle of friends, Pakistan must work equally hard to have a similar circle of friends. There is no exclusivity in relationships between countries in international politics. If Russians, Americans and Chinese happen to be friends of India, they can also be friends of Pakistan. Since the Cold War days are over, the world is no more a neat division of sides. Relationships now are much more inclusive.

Q. Russia and China are among two important poles in the emerging multi-polar world, and, terrorism is an important concern for both the countries. How would these two countries be taking position on issues of terrorism in post-2014 years particularly if Afghanistan and its bordering areas are not secured and used by militant forces?

Answer: As we are threatened by terrorism, so is the a universal concern regarding militancy as long as civilizational sensitivities, civilizational proclivities, civilizational deprivations continue to drive young people of Islam into the fold of militancy and terror. It may not only be that it is only Islamic terrorism that is going to become a factor, there will be number of other factors such as Hindu chauvinism. That is shaping itself as the next threat as far our region is concerned. Unless India has capacity to curtail and cap the sentiment of Hindu nationalism we may find ourselves into an even bigger conundrum. US President George Bush used the word of Crusade after incident of 9/11. Even in Europe, an insane person opened fire on so many people for being Muslims. China has a problem in Xinjiang, Russia has a problem with Chechnya, USA has a problem with Al-Qaeda, India has currently many problems like Kashmir and the Naxalites?

So the entire world would continue to be susceptible and concerned about terrorism and that is why China and Russia will also be equally involved. This is why there is a need for much more cooperative mechanisms in the world to handle terrorism. At the regional level if India itself wants to avoid being targeted by this kind of sentiments then it needs to become partners with Pakistan to fight this menace. Similarly rest of the countries including China, Russia, Pakistan, Iran, Afghanistan, Central Asian countries need to work together. Central Asian countries are also home to many insurgent movements. This is actually a transitional point in history which needs to be better managed with much more cooperation at international level.

Q. If we critically analyze the recent developments particularly in few important Muslim countries, the Muslim World seems drifting to an Intra-civilizational Clash on sectarian fault lines. How do you see this threat overall and also with reference to Pakistan?

Answer: There are two triggers of sectarianism that have impacted Pakistan, region and the Islamic world. First is the Arab-Israel problem that has gradually gravitated to a point where Israel seems to be in continuous hostility with Muslim world, essentially with Hamas in Palestine and Hizb Ullah in Lebanon. What does it do? It generates sentiment in Syria, which then generates sentiments in Iran. There is thus Shia sensitivity triggered around a geopolitical issue related to Israel. This hypes Shiaism; see what happened in Iraq when Saddam left; Kuwait too has a large proportion of Shia population; the Syrian crisis too has a large Shia overhang. There is also a parallel strain called Wahabi Islam. How? After 1979 when Pakistan became part of war against Russia, the money came from few friendly countries. These countries have particularly been exporting funds; and therefore their religious sentiment or religious thought of their specific way of looking at Islam.

These two strains or two triggers have given cause for this chasm to be more prominently seen and therefore exploited by people. Anyone who wants to weaken Islam will exploit these two areas and will feed either of the two sects to create differences. This to me will be ultimate disaster for the Muslims and religion of Islam. There is a need for Muslim scholars to come forward and keep people united and clearly declare their abhorrence for violent means.

Q. What measures we need to adopt as a state and society to harness violent sectarianism in Pakistan?

Answer: As long as people have shared stakes in the well being of a society, people will care for their society. A stable society will foster a stable state. If people know that their tomorrow is attached with progress of the state, and the future of their children is related with well being of the state, they will protect it. This package of stakes includes justice system, administration, governance, economy; which if provided to the individuals will make this society strong.

But this well being can't be achieved through talks, lectures or promises alone. It needs practical measures to ensure committed governance, able administration, rule of law and merit. Narratives are never coined and forced down the throats. Stable and progressive societies evolve their own narratives which become a binding force for a shared hope and a common future. A hope for our tomorrow being better than our today is the key to societal stability and success.

Q. How do you view absence or presence of efficient governance, poverty, and social injustices in broader context of tackling violence and ensuring peace in the society?

Answer: As I said earlier, hope is the key to success to address all issues. People lose hope due to lack of governance, mal administration, lack of justice, absence of law and order. The nation gets united, not by replacing paradigms and replacing narratives; it will become united by making people stake holders in the system for common benefit to all. This strategy will eliminate 80% problems of Pakistan. The politicians must lead this nation better than what they have exhibited


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