The Formation Of The Pakistan Army History Essay
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Published: Mon, 5 Dec 2016
Pakistan came into being on 14 Aug 1947 as one country comprised mainly of contagious Muslim areas. Today even after more than sixty years down the line the country is struggling to become a nation. Pakistan’s army has had the distinction of holding of reigns of the country for more than thirty-eight years. Martial law regimes have come up in Pakistan in spite of democratically elected governments, the Army continued to exercise control even when civilians were titular rulers of Pakistan.
There are many possible questions as to why the Pakistan army is so different then the Indian Army although both the armies share a similarity in cultural heritage and an inherited legacy of political neutrality from the British. . How and under what circumstances did Pakistan Army gained such colossal proportion of importance in the social fabric of Pakistan so as to be the major factor in deciding the policies, relations and thus the destiny of Pakistan in the new world order.
Army in Pakistan gained importance which continued to grow steadily, maybe after the first instance of employment of Army for internal security problem on 06 mar 1953,the place was Lahore. The situation was brought under control within two days.
The soldiers were withdrawn on 14 May and two days later “Dawn” newspaper commented that “Memories of the Army rule in Lahore will linger for a long time to come and a new look that Lahore has acquired and the sense of discipline among its people inculcated by the Army will bear eloquent testimony to the good work done by Maj Gen
Azam Khan and his men.” This probably was the building block through which Pakistan Army got itself entrenched to seats of power in future.
Many scholars have also raised the question of the age old problem of humankind that is economics driving the force behind the Pakistan Army being reluctant to give away its stake in power.The initial patriotism changed to self sustenance and then to safeguard the vital economic interests of the army. Over the years we have seen that Pakistan has been able to force the world opinion and aid towards itself as per Dr Philip Colhn “pakistan is a nation which puts barrel a pistol on its head and demands aid,help otherwise it would shoot itself.” This argument merits considerstion as due to its unique geopolitical position it has become a major player and a strategic partner for the sole superpower USA in “the fight against terror.” The crux of the problem are the bribes the Pakistani military establishment openly seeks from the international community for any move on its part whether it is to help rein in Taliban or severe its institutional support to India directed terror groups.
Another point which drives the behavior of Pakistan is that it has to live with the fact that it lacks ‘strategic depth’ and so it has raised its stakes in Afghanistan which it considers its strategic depth and the militant outfits operating with the blessings of Pakistan Army,more in particular of ISI are also considered as strategic partners which would come to play when the need arises.
Statement of the Problem
The Pak Army traditionally preoccupied itself with political, social, economic security concerns of the nation. It started with Field Marshal Mohammad Ayub Khan ( 17 Jan 1951 – Apr 1969) since then there has been many instances when power was bestowed on civil regimes but due to their corruption and mis governance people of Pakistan turned back to their Army leadership for solace. The role of the Pakistan army in politics, is contributing to dissonance with India.
The army has been supreme power centre and has played its role in all the major time lines in the history of the nation irrespective of the global and geo strategic positions prevailing at that time. The foreign policies and political issues are dictated to a certain extent by the GHQ. This role of Pakistan army in politics, especially in the present sub-continental context, is the major cause of dissonance with India.
Justification of the Study
The Pakistan Army has been able to influence the political, social and religious
aspirations of the people of Pakistan. In doing so it has been able to justify its
involvement in almost all spheres of the governance .As a powerful organization ,it
has been able to present a picture to the population that in the present scenario it is
the only organization in Pakistan which can safeguard the nations integrity and
security from the biggest enemy, India. This study proposes to see the correlation
between the Army and the governance and power structure of Pakistan further if its
this mindset is the root cause of dissonance with India.
The study will deal with the historical backdrop and the symbiotic relationship which has emerged between civil and military relations in Pakistan. The role played by army in politics and its subsequent effect on relations with India. The study will cover the military regimes in brief along with the three wars and the proxy war in Kashmir resulting in fomenting trouble against India .
Method of Data Collection
The means and sources of gathering information , which would assisted in completing this paper are appended below:-
guest speakers .
Articles of significance in Indian and Pakistani newspapers.
Periodicals and Journals.
Books written by various writers in the subject.
A bibliography of the above means and sources is appended at the end of the text.
Organisation of the Dissertation
In the course of the dissertation, the subject is proposed to be analysed in the following parts: –
(a) Chapter II. Historical Perspective of Pak Army Ideology.
(b) Chapter III. Pak Failed Democracy or State
(c) Chapter IV. Wars with India, their impact on policy formulation..
(d) Chapter V. Civil Military Relations and their dynamics.
(e) Chapter VI. Influence Of Pak Army On Relations With India.
HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVE OF PAKISTAN ARMY IDEOLOGY
As we look into the events that unfolded after 14 Aug 1947we would come to the conclusion that very few nations come into existence as India and Pakistan came into being. The partition of British india into two independent nations of India and Pakistan has a long and sorrow saga of violence, mistrust, betrayal and a sense of unfullfillment Of the objectives for which this division was sought by their political leaders.
The initial problems have continued till date and there is little hope for a peaceful, permanent solution.The problems which have become a more or less a permanent feature in relations between the two countries are
(a) The territorial claims of J & K
(b) Disproportionate arms acquisition as seen by each other.
(c) Nuclear Status.
(d) Partition of undivided India.
The partition of British India also included division of the Army between India and Pakistan.The war department was split on 19 July 1947 and many units began moving components to the destinations on either side of the border. The task was not an easy one as the numbers were large the British Indian Army was 400,000 strong.It was decided that Indian Army would get 2,60,000 with balance allotted to Pakistan. Out of the twenty – nine infantry regiments Pakistan received eight a similar ratio of division took place in other fighting arms.
The transformation was not easy and in most of the cases it ended in sorrow while in some cases it ended in slaughter – although it was not of a soldier killing a fellow soldier. Creation of a new stste did not have an auspicious beginning. It is not surprising that the distrust engendered by mass slaughter has continued to linger on even today.
Another reason for the distrust formulated in the psyche of the Pakistan was the fact that in the middle of chaos and terror the newborn armies had a tough and challenging task of creating a balanced fighting forces.India got a large proportion of base installation as most of the stores, depots were located within India.It had been worked out that 170,000 tons of equipment and stores were to be dispatched to Pakistan in 300 train loads actually Pakistan only received three railway wagon loads from India containing obsolete or useless items such as prophylactics left over from early treatment centers set up during the Second World War in Burma as recalled by General Gul Hassan . This denial of equipment to Pakistan contributed to the rapid souring of relations.
The territories were to be distributed by two commissions chaired by Sir Cyril Radcliffe, an eminent jurist who lacked knowledge about the subcontinent. Mountbatten the then Viceroy of British India is supposedly to have used all his charm to persuade the rulers of approximate 500 independent ‘Princely States’ to accede to India rather than to Pakistan. He succeeded but with three exceptions of Hyderabad, Junagarh and Kashmir.The Nawab of Junagarh immediately after partition declared accession to Pakistan it was within Indian territory so it accession was not practicable ,as it had only 20 percent muslim population its accession was not logical either. Hyderabad was also a similar problem as 86 per cent of its population was hindu but Kashmir was a muslim dominated state with a hindu ruler who wanted to be independent.
Thus amidst this chaos India did military action in Junagarh after its Nawab fled to Pakistan .The Nizam of Hyderabad Osman Ali had not decided to opt for either of the countries the and there was a standstill which lasted till 13 september 1947 when Indian troops took over the state. Thus,in two of the desputed territories there had been solutions one in Junagarh involved plebiscite favouring India and other at Hyderabad involving military action .The problem of Kashmir was similar but was not solved and has led to was and tension between two countries since then.
The actions by India in Junagarh, Hyderabad and the Kashmir dispute had a very negative effect in the general psyche of Pakistan towards India who now came to be seen as a nation which could use force to re-unite the subcontinent. This fear was the initial trigger in formulation of policies within Pakistan and was instrumental in deciding its international policies and relations .We can argue that these notions were not correct and an extension of imagination by Pakistan but it should be remembered that when it was critical for Pakistan to stabilize its internal situation India ,although was also doing the same inside its territories ,was insensitive and committed actions without taking Pakistan into confidence thus augmented Pakistan’s fears against India.
In view of the above arguments it is clear that the problems and the inadvertent actions by India to solve then coupled with the scars of a bloody partition made Pakistan security conscious and its leaders were of the opinion that with a large neighbour who doe not hesitate to use force Pakistan’s territorial integrity was at a risk. This formulated the foundation of Pakistan policies to be formulated and followed.
The policy of leaders, whether civil or military, was to strengthen defense of Pakistan at all conditions and cost. The chaos and internal problems made the political elected representatives dependent on the bureaucracy to run the administration and on the army to safeguard territorial integrity of the nation and maintain law and order . The army should only be called for maintenance of law and order duties only in exceptional cases but in Pakistan it became a regular feature and paved the way for future role which the Army had to play.
Although Indian and Pakistani armies had a common origin in the old British Indian Army their employment and conduct differed drastically some differences are :-
(a) Pakistan Army has been ruling the nation for more than 32 years since it attained independence and so it has acquired great influence and powers within the politics and society.
(b) The Pakistan army was created from scratch and it led to a mixed legacy of pride and bitterness at having to create a virtually new army in the face of active Indian hostility.
(c) The basis of creaton of Pakistan was to created as an Islamic state, so its army had to adapt to Islamic principles and practices and used it to build upon its strength.
(d) After partition the responsibility of the defence of the North West
Frontier Provinces was that of Pakistan , changing its entire strategic outlook.
The unique feature of composition of Pakistan Army is that it is dominated by Punjabi Muslims. The Pakistan army had something like 60 percent Punjabi Muslims and the next bigger chunk from the North West Frontier Province. Thus, the army came to be dominated by the Punjabi-Pathan, psyche and culture of defiance, unwillingness to accept defeat, and not accepting responsibility for it by transferring it to someone else, further an urge to dominate, certain recklessness and a deep desire for revenge.
As has already been mentioned that Punjabi Muslim officers formed the majority of the Offr cadre and thus acquired a influential position in the newly formed state of Pakistan: they stressed that the intrinsic worth of Pakistan was the Islamic character of Pakistan this was in turn to be reflected in the Islamic character of the military. They propagated , the history of Pakistan had its origin to Muslim dominance in South Asia and Pakistanis were natural conquerors of the region as their purer religion was an asset and their aggressive character. These beliefs led to the belief of the supremacy of Pakistani martial classes over ‘Hindu India’.
Since its inception the military rulers have had a great say in formulating policies ,laws which shaped Pakistan’s destiny. The Army is dominated by Punjabis which come from affluent land lord ,industrial class ,these classes traditionally have been the ruling elite thus the Army officers belonging to these regards military ascendancy of politics not only as a right but as a duty as well. The degree to which military represent interests of others is a debatable issue further , the army has steadily extended its field to include protection of the national ideology, as per its own interpretation . Under Zia ideology of Pakistan being a Muslim state changed, in due course of time, to an Islamic polity and now it has further changed to Pakistan being a nation of ‘enlightened moderation’. General Zia’s Islamisation campaign affected both Pakistani society and the Army Zia tried to build a more puritanical and devout Army and allowed some religious groups like Tabligh – e – Jamat .to become active in the Army.He was also the first Army Chief to attend the annual conventions of this group.Zia religion to be integrated in the syllabus of the staff college and encouraged the study of Islam’s teachings regarding the conduct of war.
The unquestionable military professionalism of the Pakistan army is resultant of the fighting traditions and natural instincts of people of North-West India. The problem of Pakistan Army is that it has a constricted base of its recruitment, and a far larger role is played by tribal and clan factor which tend to deal with proficient matters in a similar manner which on a hindsight is constricted ethnic viewpoint. This clan background increases the stress to prove that one is more courageous and aggressive than the other, with little consideration to the cost of such action an institute like would have to pay and an example of such foolhardiness in Pakistan Army can be that of the Kargil misadventure undertaken by it on such considerations.
The Pakistan army guards their integrity , protects their position in the society, and wants to protect a foundation or an idea since the day Pakistan was created. Further it has been dynamic in establishment of internal law and order. Furthermore, it has forever regarded itself as the special expression of the idea of Pakistan, and a few officers have advocated an activist role in reforming the society where it has fallen below the standard of excellence set by the military.
The professionalism of the Pakistan army has been strongly influenced by the philosophy of Pakistan. During 1980s the army began to assume the role of the only defender of the country’s ideological frontiers. This resulted in change in the social culture of the army, and its officer corps. The Pak army officer corps influences the defense policy as well as politics of Pakistan.
The military has maintained its supremacy in politics has been successfully projecting itself as ‘saviours’ of the state, it has laid claim of the sole agency capable of promoting and safeguarding national integration and prevailing only when it becomes necessary to prevent collapse. Post independence, the Pakistan army identified and stressed that Islam was a unifying force. There are regular attempts by military think tanks to decrease the degree of influence of British Indian army patterns and the need to alter as per Islamic principles. A Lieutenant General involved with training in the army states , “Islam is a religion in which certain amount of regimentation is germane. You have a system, a core, so basically therefore, for a Muslim, as I see it; he gets a certain orientation, a certain organisation and a certain discipline.”
General Zia tried to change the ethos of the army, making Islamic custom and teachings part of the army’s day-to-day activities. He changed the motto of the army from Jinnah’s ‘Unity, Faith and Discipline’ to ‘Iman, Taqwa, Jihad fi Sabeelillah’ (Faith, Obedience of God and Struggle in the Path of Allah) and even allowed members of the fundamentalist Tableeghi Jamaat to preach at the PMA.
Many Muslim officers had to choose between India and Pakistan during partition and a fairly large number chose this option. Most probably they thought that they would have more opportunities in an Islamic state vis a vis a secular democracy having a Hindu majority. The occurrence of partition established the worst doubt of these officers. It taught Pakistani officers one basic rule: trust no one in a situation of a Hindu or Sikh vs. Muslim and take nothing for granted, except when you have the force to defend yourself. This suspicion (but not fear) of communal enemies was imprinted on the psyches of almost all officers in the new Pakistan army.
Later the distribution of military stores and non receipt of the promised stores from India, Indian actions in Kashmir,Junagarh and Hyderabad, made Pakistan officers formulate a sense of distrust and perception- real or imagined – that India was dishonest in its dealings especially when it come to Pakistan are part of the inheritance of the present-day Pakistan army. Pakistani officers of subsequent generations believe in this mistrust of India as a primary postulation, which is as true as the formulation of their country and it would take a herculean effort of both sides to completely erase this belief from the subconscious mind.
. Pakistan Army is perceived to be a highly motivated and a disciplined organisation. The people have conventionally shown great admiration, even high regard, for its officers and soldiers, who have time and again performed when the time of reckoning, come. On the other hand the military leadership has frequently let the military and the country down. Slowly, respect, has been replaced by a feeling of fear and hatred and has generated dialogue on the army and its role in the country’s polity. During the Zia regime in the late 1980s, people were so fed up with the uniform and its interference in daily life that many Army officers desisted going in public places in uniform . During 1990s, hatred of the military was due to the fact that the army was seen encroaching into the commercial life of the cities and even agriculture.Even during the time Musharraf was in power People minced no words when it came to criticizing the military but they taked within the four walls of their houses.They adjusted to the military rule which it seems to have become habit of sorts.
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