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ISI, a freelance protector of national security of Pakistan

Guest post by Amjad Malik

ISI is protecting the national security of Pakistan and combating any viable threat to its borders from outside and since 1971 from within. It is not different to the work of the CIA, KGB, RAW, Mossad, and MI5 & MI6 who work day in day out to avert any threat to the security of their own respective countries. The passionate work of this institution though is hardly in the public domain but is paramount when the threat is looming from its neighboring country on its borders, heavy presence of a foreign force on its western borders, and the presence of groups like ‘Makti bahni’ which are promoted, financed and cultured inside Pakistani bordering areas by its enemy. The need of their passionate work become more imperative when the corrupt elite of the country wish to derail the sovereignty of the country and endanger the security of the state by forging an alliance with super power in lust for power putting aside national interest.

Pakistan army unfortunately has spent around 4 decades in power corridors and no other but indecisive & corrupt politicians who lack political will, weaker institutions, tame judiciary and selfish & unprofessional bureaucracy is cumulatively responsible for not erecting a viable democracy where rule of law, good governance, justice and constitutionalism holds sway. In fact, non action on ‘Murree accord,’ continued violation of our air space by drones and China’s support of unchallenged UNSC Resolution no. 1267 is a self evidence of our politician’s poor performance. In fact, our rulers allegedly in an ultra parliamentary decision requested china to let go of the technical hold, making it a strong case for Parliamentary intervention to probe unless they seek army intervention by their default. Former premier Nawaz Sharif is through his vision calling those who are calling shots to make their promises to learn lessons from the history before its too late and is foreseeing those coming who never went out of politics. In the absence of Parliament which stood on 12 Oct 1999, it will be an uphill struggle to put barricades in the way of military unless Charter of Democracy is enacted forthwith, though it is not looking imminent. I think Q league’s Mushahid Hussain has put forward a claim for national government but to many when air force is on high alert and any time Indian air forces may attempt to target some of the MDI outlets emphasises the need of ‘national security government’ due to a weaker political leadership who endanger the security more. That National Security government may be a joint work of DSC and Parliament where army and civilian leadership in conformity work to safeguard the country and avert the threat of aggression against its borders as it’s do or die stage for Pakistan.

As long as all stake holders do not sit on one table and see eye to eye with each other and have a joint aim to safeguard the national interest, promote supreme parliament concept and produce a good governance. In the absence of a failure of the implementation on COD and negation of 18th Feb mandate, I am afraid we will keep seeing illusions everywhere. Pakistan no doubt, is in a very critical situation but sending DG ISI will not solve problems with India. India is playing at the hands of others and going to aggression will ignite a fire within India too which will not be easily put out. With Bombay attacks India is coercively rewarded and Pakistan’s hand is twisted to do more. Pakistan though is committed on war on terrorism but wishes to redraw the procedure under which he will contribute.

Pakistani leaders need to decide whether they wish to move forward democratically or are ready to cave in meagerly at the hands of US pressure as matters have gone ahead of drone attacks now. In this cloud the work of ISI is praiseworthy, As it is combating major intelligence forces in the region and in particular Indian threat successfully. Its a thankless job, unlike Army Generals who enjoy the perks and privileges but the work of this agency is far more difficult then one can comprehend. Extremism has given new twist to international information sharing process, and India has rightly advantaged this weakness. Their aim is to weaken the country and do not allow it to flourish an economic or military power. They also wish it to remain weak on political front with a military run regime where legitimacy always question their viability as a state. I think ISI made Pakistan stronger in the wake of emanating threats from around since 1971 and no doubt, it has advanced in order to meet the 21st century requirements and has developed from human intelligence to scientific knowledge. It’s a high time that people sees ISI separately than army rule. In army rule ISI’s job is doubled but in civil they revert to their old task to safe guard the state from any danger to its ‘national security’ from outside. Looking at the bleak situation of Pakistani rulers, there is not much help to this institution from our incumbent leaders and this freelance protector of national security is carrying on its job silently, rewardlessly and quietly in the line of its duty. Pakistanis need to understand that their country’s security from foreign espionage is intact despite the high level of threat.

Amjad Malik is a Solicitor-Advocate of the Supreme Court of England & Wales and has done LLM in national security law from UK.