My Views

Military funding in Pakistan

Posted in India and World, Pakistan, Terrorism by dullar on January 18, 2008

In order to understand how military operates in Pakistan, one of its important aspect is the funding of military oerations. Its been evident that seeing the proportions and dimensions of its activities, be it internal security, ensuring security across north-west border along Afghanistan, fightning insurgency in Baluchistan, and aiding the millitancy in Jammu & Kashmir the military in Pakistan cant be funded wholly by the internal resources, thanx but no thanx to its economy’s condition. So money flights in Pakistan for its military activities across the border in form of aids. US, China, Middle East Islamist countries, especially Saudi Arabia are the foremost in aiding Pakistan, of course for their own objectives. According to an estimate Pakistan got a sum of around 58 billion USD from 1950 to 1999. It has been further aided heavily by US after 9/11 in the name of fighting the taliban and Alqaeda  in Afghanistan. Its been to everybody’s guess that how efficiently Pakistan and it military spending all this aid. But the results have their own story to tell. Military has been highly incompetitive as far as above stated objectives are concerned. Containment of cross border terrorism, internal security condition, popularity and credibility of army among civilians has been at its all time low.

Dealing the mater, this article cites some of the enlightening reasons for the Pakistan Army’s dire conditions, which have brought much miseries to people at large there-

“…….Extensive research shows that when governments luck into unearned cash (which economists call ‘rents’) from oil or other resources, the healthy links that bind them to their citizens are often severed. Freed from relying much on taxes, governments spend the money arbitrarily. Citizens, left untaxed, feel less motivation to monitor things carefully. The result is corruption, misrule and a host of other ills.

Rents paid for natural resources are bad enough. But ‘strategic rents’ — earned by a country for its role in the foreign policies of other states — are even more damaging. Military aid by definition entrenches the militaries that get it, making them less responsive to civilian control. Pakistan’s military has grown enormously powerful over the years, resistant to democratic checks and highly entrenched in every aspect of the country’s commercial, civil and political life… …” (more)

Possible solutions for above mentioned problems cant be arrived at so easliy, but there can be few broad starting points- Credible elctions next month under neutral, foreign authorities’ monitoring; seperation of army affairs from civilian affairs,as General Kayani has hinted,(see previous post); pro-active involvement of people and media in scrutinising the daily affairs of government and the military activities; China and India playing an increased role in ensuring peaceful neighbour.

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