2016 – The Resolve Continues (From Editor's Desk)

Every New Year brings along rejuvenated hopes and aspirations, and so is 2016. We enter into January 2016 with proud optimism that is not based on wishes and desires alone, but on firm moorings of unparallel successes against terrorism and extremism. The war continues but victory is not out of sight; the destination is not far off. Pakistan Armed Forces with unflinching resolve, professionalism par excellence, and, upholding traditions of glorious sacrifices are fully poised to restore peace and security across entire Pakistan. No stone would be left unturned to secure our borders, safeguard the sovereignty and eliminate the enemies of peoples’ peace and security. The firm resolve to serve the motherland continues in 2016 with a new fervour and commitment.

We began 2015 amidst the pangs and gloom of tragic incident of APS Peshawar on December 16, 2014. The challenge was enormous, the enemies were well entrenched but the will to fight for Pakistan was also insurmountable. The shameful act and inglorious attack by the enemy aimed to put us down met a heavy response. Pakistan Armed Forces with full backing of the entire nation launched operations across the entire country. Operation Zarb-e-Azb, Operation Khyber I & II, and IBOs (Intelligence Based Operations) began the hunt for the enemy that had deceitfully disguised itself in the folds of religion, ethnicity or provincialism. Along with FATA, operations were conducted against violent militants in Balochistan, Karachi and other parts of the country. The operations were conducted without any consideration of hue and colour, good or bad, or, any other niche. The task was huge but so was the resolve, and the marvelous outcome is in front of the entire nation and the world. Today, Pakistan’s model of fighting the militancy is not only eulogized but also adopted by many armies of the world.

Fully cognizant of the fact that successful tackling of terrorism and extremism involves use of both ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ power; Pakistan Army took short as well as long term measures. Pakistan Army not only successfully handled the crisis of TDPs’ timely evacuation, benevolent temporary settlement but is also ensuring well planned rehabilitation. As of today, a major portion of TDPs have returned to their respective areas. Back home, they do not find war ravaged houses, villages and towns, but new roads, hospitals, schools and cadet colleges. Pakistan Army has used these WHAMs (Winning Hearts and Minds) operations not as a mere component of military strategy, but in reality it is the manifestation of deep rooted love for the people of Pakistan. Pakistan Armed Forces are proud of the peoples’ trust, love and support, and, stands committed to ensure their safety and security under all circumstances.

Despite being heavily engaged in internal security challenges; Pakistan Armed Forces are fully cognizant of challenges from across the eastern and western frontiers. We are fully capable to thwart any challenge to our sovereignty. This capability also provides us the pedestal to negotiate a durable peace fully protecting our core national interests, honour and prestige. As far as Afghanistan is concerned, we have always supported all Afghan-led peace overtures. Pakistan has always believed and positively contributed towards regional peace and stability.

Notwithstanding the existence of many grim challenges, today we stand more united as a nation and much better placed militarily to meet these. We have come out of the gloom stretched over almost a decade. Today, the terror forces are on the run, but all safe havens and hideouts would be denied to them. They will be chased to either accept the writ of the state or face total elimination. Without reaching the logical conclusion, the war is continued!

We need to hold firm this hard-earned peace and further secure it.
Happy New Year!

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