Limitations of this study
Military businesses in Pakistan are managed through a closed system, and information relating to military conglomerates is not made public. Moreover, there is very limited debate on military expenditure and their businesses in parliament or the media. This study has relied mainly on data available in annual budgets, together with national and international media reports. Furthermore, this study has explained how the militaiy-industrial complex has contributed to the economic crisis in Pakistan. Nonetheless, there is a need for a comprehensive study to specifically analyze how much the military-centric national security state has contributed to human insecurity in the country. Finally, this book has applied the concept of the national security state, which was proposed by some leaders and developed by some scholars in the US after the end of the Second World War. The national security state underpinned realist theory and this book does not consider other paradigms within the subject of international relations such as liberalism and social constructivism.
Structure of the book
The first chapter in this book reviews existing literature on the evolution of national security state that was born out of very extreme security circumstances in the US at the beginning of the Cold War. The realist school of thought in international relations theory underpins the establishment of the national security state, and this chapter identifies some of the key features and ideas characterizing the US national security state model in which military power is perceived as the primary instrument of the state for maintaining its national security interests, and the military and related institutional sectors possess substantial political and economic power. This American model could be deployed in the case of Pakistan, as the book revolves around Pakistan’s national security state.
The second chapter explains that Pakistan’s national security state was also bom in difficult security circumstance like the US. After independence, Pakistan perceived external threats, whether real or not, from neighbouring countries that played a major role in the formulation of this security approach in which military interests were prioritized over nation-building. The military consolidated power in the 1950s and the ISI in 1970s as primary actors in foreign and security policies as well as domestic politics of the country. More importantly, the military established its functional dominance over state affairs through establishing its alliances with religious and far-right groups as well as constitutional amendments introduced during periods of military rule in the Cold War era. This chapter also identifies some of the key features and ideas characterizing Pakistan’s national security state model and analyzes the evolution of Pakistan’s military-centric national security state approach during the Cold War. Pakistan has not only complied almost perfectly with the US national security state approach but established its own unique approach in which the Pakistani military elite has maintained a dominant position in state affairs. Nonetheless, the Pakistani military presented a range of obstacles to political parties or leaders that wanted reformation Pakistan’s national security state.
The third chapter clarifies that Pakistan has continued with its military-centric national security state approach in the changing post-Cold War security environment. In South Asia, the security situation essentially remained the same for Pakistan despite a changing global security environment. However, Islamabad lost the strategic position it once had occupied during the Cold War. Even with civilians in power, the Pakistani military elite excluded the civilian leadership from key strategic decision making with respect to the Kashmir conflict and the country's nuclear programme, and the president dismissed three elected governments with the support of the Pakistani military in the post-Cold War era. After the 9/11 terrorist attacks. General Pervez Musharraf s government reinvigorated its military-centred national security approach by making an alliance with the US in the global war on terror. However, this development has had severe destabilizing consequences for the country.
The fourth chapter considers the case of the Kashmir conflict (1989-2001) between Pakistan and India in order to analyze the efficacy of Pakistan’s military-centred national security state approach in the post-Cold War era. The Kashmir conflict has been one of the longest unresolved military conflicts in the contemporary world. During 1989-2001, Islamabad attempted to find military and diplomatic solutions to the conflict but failed. The ISI used Islamic militancy as a strategic tool to counter Indian military power and gain international attention to resolve the Kashmir dispute. In 1999, the Pakistani military instigated a war in Kargil to gain a strategic advantage over India in Kashmir.
The civilian leadership tried to find a political settlement of the outstanding issues including Kashmir through a peace process which was thwarted by the military using the issue of national security. After the 9/11 terror attacks, India successfully linked Kashmiri indigenous movement for the right to self-determination with Islamic terrorism and blamed Pakistan for sponsoring terror groups. The Kashmir case (1989-2001) confirms that Pakistan’s national security state approach failed not only to resolve the Kashmir issue but exacerbated security threats.
The fifth chapter examines Pakistan’s strategic considerations and regional stability in South Asia by looking at the case of Pakistan’s participation in the global war on terror from 2001 to 2013. This is another important case to see the effectiveness of Pakistan’s national security state policies in protecting its regional security interests in the post-Cold War era. The 9/11 terror attacks changed the security dynamics of South Asia. Pakistan once again became a key strategic ally in the US-led global war on terror, which provided another opportunity for the Pakistani military to buttress its national security state. While Pakistan and the US forged a new relationship after the 9/11 attacks, both countries maintained diverse objectives and interests in their global war on terror. The US required Pakistan’s support to dislodge the Afghan Taliban regime in Kabul and eliminate Al-Qaeda, whereas Pakistan supported the US war on terror to have a friendly regime in Kabul to prevent Indian influence in Afghanistan. Musharraf adopted a dual policy in the war on terror, which was self-defeating as Islamabad supported the Kabul regime but at the same time aided the Afghan Taliban after joining the global war on terror. The study argues that this dual policy has had severe consequences for Pakistan, making it more insecure than before, as well as a pariah state. This case also confirms that Islamabad has largely failed to protect its regional security interests under the national security state in the post-9/11 period. However, Pakistan has persisted with a military-centred national security state in the post-Cold War era.
The sixth chapter directly addresses the central question of this book. In light of the evidence presented here, this chapter argues that Islamabad persisted with its military-centric national security state because it provides a privileged role to the Pakistani military elite in the state affairs. Since Pakistan’s 1947, the perceived threat to national survival has enabled the country’s military elite to build a hyper-military-industrial complex in which the Pakistani military exercised overall economic and political control of the state. This military-industrial complex has played a major role in preventing any reform of the military’s self-serving national security state. However, this security approach has largely failed to adapt to the radically transformed security environment of the post-Cold War era. This failure to adapt has not only exacerbated external threats but also fuelled new internal insecurity problems and created something of an internal-external threat nexus facing Pakistan. Moreover, it has created political instability in Pakistan that led to weak civilian institutions, socio-economic problems, and a fragile democracy in the country.