Civil Military Relations in Pakistan


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Islamabad is once again gripped by rumors of political turmoil, uncertainty, and chaotic situation. Under the Charter of Democracy both Zardari and Nawaz Sharif gave each other a license to govern, without hindrance by the other, while keeping the Army firmly in its place.  Nawaz Sharif’s relations with the military have now soared, mainly because of his government’s political and economic mismanagement, bad governance, non-implementation of the national action plan and nonprosecution of financial terrorists.

The people of Pakistan are proud of their Armed Forces and Intelligence Agencies, which has no parallels world over. Armed forces of Pakistan are fully capable of dealing all types of internal and external threats. They are making sacrifices to end the menace of terrorism. Pakistan has always been saved from complete and utter destruction by the timely and judicial intervention of the military, the only institution in the country possessing the expertise and wherewithal to address these complex problems. Army is in a critical battle against terrorists in Fata areas right now, and ISI has its hands full as it is working against the outsider networks inside Pakistan.

The civilian government, on the contrary, appears to be led by poorly institutionalized political parties stuffed full of opportunistic patronage politicians who are extremely self-centered and greedy. They reach the corridors of power by whatever available means and then begin looting without thinking about the future of the country; they do not even hesitate to demolish the public institutions including Army. Their actions are usually based on malicious intentions as they take every step that consolidates their grip on power. Pakistan is going through new experiments in the governance of “reconciliation”, with virtually no constitution, and fake democracy. The PML (N) government has tried its utmost to turn Pakistan’s public opinion against the Army and ISI. Thoughts of the defense and information ministers against the security establishment are no more a secret. The paid segment of our media shamefully spat poison against Armed Forces of Pakistan on behest of the government. The people of Pakistan strongly condemned the `propaganda’ against the armed forces.

Instead of ensuring the rule of law, serving the people, providing essential services like education, healthcare, food, electricity and gas, ending corruption, developing peace and stability in the country, providing equal opportunity in all respects to all the citizens and so on. So that no other institution may be given any chance to interrupt the civilian government; it always remain busy to curb the forces asking them for good governance. Currently, Pakistan is facing a lot of internal and external threats. As per traditions of the Army, Gen. Raheel Sharif is consistently meeting his colleagues regularly to discuss the country’s security, law and order, implementation of the national action plan, Zarb-e-Azb and terrorist financing situation. At every meeting PML (N) express dismay and term it a conspiracy to derail the democracy. There is a feeling among the people that the politicians have completely failed to govern the country. The democracy is being threatened by no other than the PML (N) bad governance and nonstop corruption.

Due to lack of proper prosecution, terrorists are getting the advantage of an ongoing conflict between the civilian and military leadership. Regarding the arrest of PPP leader Dr. Asim Hussain involved in providing enormous financial support to terrorist groups and a model Ayan Ali in currency smuggling case, a PML(N) lawmaker said,

“Our leadership conveyed to the military that arrests were rocking political reconciliations in the country, but to no avail.”

It appears that Mian Nawaz Sharif is again in the same combative mood that cost him power twice and sent him into political exile; he has taken no lesson from the experience.

Pakistan is presently passing through the gravest security and economic situation. It is only the smooth and honest working and constructive civil-military interactions that can better the prospects of prosperity, integrity and sovereignty. Although, the PML (N) government claims the civilian and military leaderships are on the same page. However, events taking place deny this claim, and it looks like a tattered page because the army corps commanders’ conference recently publicly underlined the need for matching or complementary initiatives by the government to consolidate gains made by the military against the militants to establish enduring peace. In response the Prime Minister, instead of addressing the identified problems, said, “implementation of the National Action Plan is a shared responsibility, and all institutions have to play their role while remaining within the ambit of the Constitution.”

The clash between the Civilian leadership and military has always led to chaos and anarchy. The sovereignty and integrity of Pakistan lie in the smooth functioning of all State institutions. Nothing is impossible; the situation can be rectified by doing concrete work with utmost sincerity keeping national interest uppermost and following the motto and guidelines of Quaid-e-Azam.

To ensure national stability, security, restoration of peace and improvement in law and order situation, the Government should prosecute financial terrorists as pointed out by military intelligence. There is a dire need for action against the corruption that is now at climax, end privatization of profitable national assets, limit the dependence merely on debts, promote the culture of merit, free the courts for real justice, free the election commission to hold free and fair elections.

The PML (N) government is creating conflicts among national institutions besides looting and plundering the national wealth in connivance with the PPP. People are now absolutely fed up with both the parties. The PML-N has totally failed to fulfill its promises made during its election campaign. The nation is fully supporting Pak Army for curbing terrorism and the creation of peace. The government should act prudently and improve its governance instead of creating conflict with the national institutions; otherwise any conflict would cause problems for the government as well as the whole nation.

Shaukat Masood Zafar
Shaukat Masood Zafar
A well known freelance columnist writing for daily Pakistan Observer, and several other national and international websites and newspapers. Economy, Politics, and Agricultural & Rural Development are especially areas of his interest.


  1. very sad to read this article. self made opinion. please stop telling lie. if it is difficult for you to find right pathway, look the pathway of enemy, opposite to that is right one. USA/Europe is biggest enemy of Islam/Pakistan.


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