Academic journal article Journal of Political Studies

Present and Future Conflict Environment: Challenges for Pakistan

Academic journal article Journal of Political Studies

Present and Future Conflict Environment: Challenges for Pakistan

Article excerpt

US occurrence has actively contributed in aggravating the security situation in the region of South Asia. US war on terror has affected Pakistan significantly. This war has posed serious challenges for Pakistan military and political leadership. Worsening economic condition has added a frustrated dimension in this war. There has been a serious lack of comprehension between political leadership and Pakistan military on the perception of threat, nature of conflict and development of consensus on resolving these conflicts and moulding a favourable public opinion. This grim scenario on national and regional level is the consequence of global security environment. In past Pakistan's security policies was mainly India centric while US served as a prime factor in the backdrop. In present the situation is reversed. Pakistan's security policies are mainly US centric in post 9/11 era. The present study is an effort to analyse the existing realities.

Key Words: Threat perception, Strategic culture, Security policies, nuclear capability, Cold Start Strategy.

In South Asia, nuclear status was sought to cope with the security challenges, present in the strategic culture of the region. But the security scenario is blurring even today specifically for Pakistan. This grim scenario has kept the institution of Army active and effective since inception. In some periods of time military it self was the political decision maker and sometimes it provided relief to the political leadership for making viable political decisions. There has been a serious lack of comprehension between political leadership and Pakistan military on the perception of threat, nature of conflict and development of consensus on resolving these conflicts and moulding a favourable public opinion.

This grim scenario on national and regional level is consequence of global security environment. In past Pakistan's security policies was mainly India centric while US served as a prime factor in the backdrop. In present the situation is reversed. Pakistan's security policies are mainly US centric in post 9/11 era. There are few important factors that are shaping the security settings. They are;

* Reality and Rationale of US Presence in the Region

* Internal issues and challenges

* New Regional Powers with Global Aspirations and Agendas

* Changing Realities of World Politics

Strategically Pakistan is the foremost victim of insecurity due to above mentioned global security settings. America is sitting in backyard, economy is near to shatter, there is a constant threat condition on Eastern and Western borders, moreover, there is ideological divergence between different segments of society. This scenario is not only intricate but delicate to handle. Before discussing the regional and global element of insecurity and role of Pakistan's institutions to counter them, it is important to understand the theoretical base of threat, strategic culture and conflict. Infect threat and conflict are the offsprings of strategic culture and on the other hand threat and conflict contribute to the strategic culture. These elements are inter connected and inter dependent. Here they are explained one by one keeping in view the security issues of Pakistan in the global security settings.

Threat Perception

In literal meaning threat is declaration of intention to cause harm. One can understand it as a warning from a powerful opponent. On the other hand perception is a process of using the senses to acquire information about the surrounding or situation (Hornby, 2000, p.997). Threat perception is 'central to overall phenomenon' in the international crisis studies (Cohen, 1979, p.3). Threat validates the mobilization of defence resources of the state. Without the clear communication of threat even the clear evidence is not entertained on merit in some cases. Threat evokes counter measures on the other hand (Singer, J.D. 1958: 93-94).

Threat is not generally to the physical existence of the state. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.