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Title: 21st Century Warfare and Pakistan's Military Response
Authors: Hussain, Tauqeer
Keywords: International Relations
Issue Date: 2019
Publisher: International Islamic University, Islamabad.
Abstract: This study has contested the claim of General Sir Rupert Smith that “industrialized armed forces are ill-suited to the new style of fighting” that he calls as “war among the people”. Though, in his book “The Utility of Force: The Art of War in the Modern World” he mainly contextualized the western military experience to fight the war but this study has developed a plea on his claims to contest Pakistan’s experience to deal with the 21st century warfare. Since the very inception of Pakistan, it had been continuously adjusting its military thought with that of changing nature of war. This initially orchestrated a national security discourse that saw direct conventional military threats as the fundamental threat, which later on peddled between conventional to subconventional. With dawn of nuclear environment in South Asian security matrix just prior to 9/11 and its immediate fallout under the premise of ‘global war on terror’ had altogether trapped the discourse of national security in Pakistan. Pakistan being a well trained and highly equipped modern military with that of having nuclear capability had been fighting this new war. Therefore, the assumption of Sir Rupert Smith has a direct relevance on Pakistan as well. In other words, due to an amalgamated warfare that included multiple responses from the state institutions of Pakistan made it an ideal point of reference to apply the Smith’s theoretical assumption. Hence, this study had contextualized the overall security dynamics of Pakistan in reference to industrial outlook of its armed forces. Philosophical dimensions of the study made the references about today’s complex and uncertain worldwide security environment, which has never been remained important point of reference for a renewed emphasis on military learning. The reason is rather simple. In the aftermath of 9/11 incident it is now inevitable for conventional militaries to tackle the challenges associated with an amalgamated warfare that has put the people at front. This necessitated the need for a new military approach that should be conducive and helpful to achieve requirements for hybrid warfare with that of conventional and sub-conventional domain. Pakistan’s adversaries know that they cannot defeat it via conventional means. As a result, they have opted to fight unconventionally and asymmetrically. Traditionally, the context of conventional warfare provided great leverage to military strategists to utilize and apply the military power to achieve political objectives. In view of Sir Rupert Smith, today application of massive military power and material force in hand cannot ensure the successful execution of doctrine due to the very nature of its industrial outlook. In other words, fighting sub-conventional war by ruthlessly utilizing maximum military force under the broader guidelines of conventional war doctrines paves the way to ones adversary. Soldiers that are ignorant of the past and unaware of the realities of the present will be ill-equipped for the future. Nations that bluff in national security don’t deserve to survive. Recognizing the significance of the negative impact of this mindset on the application of military power to acheive sustainable political outcomes, the study made a clear reference of Smith’s assumption to investigate Pakistan’s military preparedness in the wake of 21st century warfare. To achieve the rational explanation, this study investigated the major question, ‘has Pakistan dealt with the threats of 21st century warfare effectively or the country is ill-suited to the new style of war?’ To investigate the major question, sub questions have further deliberated the interlinked dynamics necessary to cope up with the debate and analysis of the topic of investigation. To reach out its rational and objective conclusions, the study has used both historical and descriptive approaches to unfold the application of military power to achieve sustainable political goals. It utilized doctrine of ‘utility of force’ proposed by General Sir Rupert Smith and Clausewitz theory of ‘military learning and change’ to understand the mechanics of learning and response within Pakistan military. The objective investigation and the supporting arguments carried out in the study have nullified the application of Sir Rupert Smith’s assumption that “industrialized armed forces are ill-suited to the new style of fighting”. Pakistan contrary to western militaries such as US and UK; remained far successful in mitigating the ‘war among the people’ with that of conventional threats to its territorial integrity. Pakistan’s vulnerability of fighting this war on its own territory further made the country quite an exceptional example in the modern world that has successfully fought the sub-conventional warfare. Furthermore, Clausewitz theory of ‘military learning and change’ had remained applicable during the course of investigation which overall contextualized Pakistan’s military learning to evolve its response from experience of other militaries with that of her own battlefield skills. Qualitative research paradigm had been adopted to explore the secondary data required to answer the major question with that of subquestions. Primary data was collected through focused group discussions (FGDs) conducted with relevant stakeholders that included military and non-military respondents/participants.
Gov't Doc #: 19529
Appears in Collections:PhD Thesis of All Public / Private Sector Universities / DAIs.

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