Consult with me on Maven
Consult with me on Maven

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Saturday, July 9, 2016

The Question of Afghan Refugees

Saturday, July 25, 2015

The Changig Regional Geo-Politics

Daily Times Saturday, July 25, 2015

The Changing Regional Geo Politics: Opportunities and Challenges for Pakistan


The late Prof. Dr. R M Naib used to tell us, ‘Change is the only constant. Different species must adopt and adapt to the continuous process of change to survive. Those who cannot simply vanish, get extinct’. States like any other species must adopt and adapt to their changing environments or be ready for extinction.  The Geo Political environment of South and West Asia is undergoing a fundamental change with both Internal (regional and state level) as well as International. These changes provide opportunities and challenges to all regional states. This essay focuses on Pakistan.
The major elements that define the regional geo political changes are

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

PTI in Government: Looking Back at Khyber Pakhtunkhwa 2014

The Published version in Daily Express Tribune 31 Dec 2014

Putting promises of change to the litmus test


The original unedited version

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa: Looking back at 2014                    
Prof. Ijaz Khan
Department of International Relations
University of Peshawar
Looking back at 2014 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, in fact all of Pakistan, has to start with what happened by its end – The Massacre of Children by Terrorists. That day angered and saddened almost everyone, everywhere, but for a few. The tragedy of December 16 2014 shows the failure of this State as whole, with the PTI ruled Khyber Pakhtunkhwa as one part of it. It was a systemic failure and did not just happen and the perpetrators of the tragedy were not only the few who carried it out or their immediate leaders, pointing at the fast growing irrelevancy of State and its writ; The failure of governance and all its parts – administrative, political, economic/developmental and socio-cultural. PTI, was voted in by the electorate of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa largely due to their dissatisfaction with the inability of the outgoing government to arrest and correct the deteriorating governance of the province.

Monday, December 1, 2014

President Ashraf Ghani and regional peace

Monday, December 1, 2014


President Ashraf Ghani and regional peace

After a historic and internationally elections, controversies, apprehensions, and compromises, Ashraf Ghani the workaholic Ivy League Professor is in charge of affairs in Afghanistan as its President. His predecessor, Karzai after remaining controversial on many counts as President, left office with dignity and respect. The transfer of power that appeared very tumultuous then looks now to have been smooth and strengthening democracy. Ashraf Ghani has been quick to assert his authority as President of his war torn country. He seems to be moving fast; charting new avenues, ideas and policies for peace and development, but questions remain where and will he be able to?

Friday, October 24, 2014

Islamic State: The New Phase of Religious Extremism

My opinion of the Islamic State (IS) as the new phase of religious extremism, intolerance and terrorism published by Daily Times, however, for reasons best known its editors, they have removed IS from the title s well as text. ISIS which they use is no more, its IS now. ISIS was limited to Iraq and Syria, which has now transformed into IS, unlimited by any geographic state boundary. Click anywhere above for the published (and edited version).
Read below the unpublished original write up

IS; The New Phase of Violent Extremist Challenge                              

Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) or Da’esh in Arabic, now ‘Islamic State (IS), claims to be a Muslim Khilafat, occupying the states of Syria and Iraq as a first step, to be followed by occupation states of the Levant, (Jordan, Israel, Palestine, Lebanon, Cyprus and Turkey), finally encompassing the whole of Muslim World. IS is the latest stage in the continuous, increasing and spreading process of Religious extremism; a more lethal challenge to peace and stability.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Interpreting the Scottish Referendum


My interpretation of the Scottish Referendum published in Daily 'The News' Today
http://www.thenews.com.pk/Todays-News-9-273486-Interpreting-the-Scottish-referendum

Interpreting the Scottish Referendum
Prof. Ijaz Khan

Today Scotland will hold a referendum to decide whether the country remains part of the United Kingdom or becomes an independent state. Whichever way the Scots decide, the very fact that the question was put to a referendum has its own significance – both in practice and in theory. Further, the decision will have a direct impact on Europe; however, it won’t just be limited to the continent.

The principality of Wales was incorporated into the kingdom of England in 1536. In 1707, the kingdoms of Scotland and England were united to form the Kingdom of Great Britain, which in 1801, united with the Kingdom of Ireland to form the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. In 1922, five-sixths of Ireland seceded from the UK, leaving the present formulation of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, which was not very peaceful. 

There was a popular and armed resistance to this by Scotland and a number of wars of independence were fought. Gradually, however, with the strengthening of liberal democratic institutionalisation, capitalism and industrialisation, the armed opposition to this union faded away. It appeared from the outside that Scotland had completely assimilated into the UK and had acquired a British identity in which a separate Scottish identity was just confined to ballads, football and history books.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

The Two Dharnas in Islamabad: Their Impact - My Opinon

The Marchers have made some achievements already. The issue at hand and the implications of these Marches are not and will not be limited to the current government or the two Sharif Brothers.
-Reversed d meagre democratic gains made by this state and society
-Increased Chaos and Anarchy further erodes State and cohesion of the society, creating a vacuum, thus makes organized groups with weapons more powerful- The marches have taken the state and society towards Anarchy and chaos, thus creating a vacuum. Such Organized group in the past was only Military, thus most analysts still consider that is the only institution that has gained. 
-They ignore that in today's Pakistan we have a number of other organized groups (various Lashkars Taliban etc) with weapons and thus they have also gained more power. 
-In the coming days I see increased intolerance, sectarian and religious violence and a more frightened weakened society. This will quicken the pace of destruction of this State and Society. 

Friday, July 18, 2014

The Crisis of Transfer of Power in Afghanistan and the Deal Brokered by United States/ John Kerry

The unofficial results of Afghan Presidential elections has created a serious crisis that threatens to undo the great leap made through holding of Elections in Afghanistan. The crisis was the result of non-acceptance of the unofficial results by the losing candidate, Abdullah Abdullah. The threats of a new Civil War became real; though dimmed now, are still present. John Kerry of United States intervened along with United Nations to save the day. They have come up with a solution providing for audit of the elections by ISAF, acceptance of the results after the audit and a power sharing formula. This has also created a reaction in certain quarters, arguing why US is forcing the winner to share power with the loser? There may be some genuine anguish among the sympathizers of the winner, but there is also a section that sees in this a peaceful resolution and transfer of power, thus their interests in continued violence in Afghanistan are hurt.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Joint Strategy to Control Militancy & Pak-Afghan Conflict Resolution post-2014- Background Paper

Joint Strategy to  Control Militancy & Pak-Afghan  Conflict Resolution post-2014

Background Paper for 'Pakistan-Afghanistan Parliamentarians' Dialogue-XI' organized by PILDAT in December 2013 in Kabul

Afghanistan's main security concern is from the threat posed by internal armed insurgency that has mainly non state international backing. Its threat perceptions also take note of the different regional states, vying with each other for a resolution of the Afghan insurgency that suits their interests. The problem is compounded as these interests are mutually contradictory and are calculated in zero-sum terms; gain of one is directly translated into loss of another. The main contenders are Pakistan and India, with Iran, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Central Asian states all vying for influence in Afghanistan. Amongst all these Afghans perceive Pakistan to be the most intrusive.
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Pakistan's Afghan Policy emanates out of its India-centric security policy. Pakistan policy towards Afghanistan since the resistance to the Soviet Intervention started has been dictated by mainly two policy goals of: 
a) Eliminating any Indian influence in Afghanistan 
b) Resolving the Durand Line issue through a policy of propping up religious alternate to the secular Pakhtun nationalist leadership and narrative.
Access the whole paper at
http://www.pildat.org/Publications/publication/FP/JointStrategytoControlMilitancyandPak-AfghanConflictResolutionpost-2014_BackgroundPaper.pdf

Thursday, January 23, 2014

There is No Insurgency in FATA - The Whole Article


(This write up appeared in 'The Friday Times' Lahore in three parts, on 17, 24 and 31 January 2014. The author (that's me) consider it needs to be read as one whole. So, has taken the liberty to share the whole write up in one go)  
There is No Insurgency in FATA
Prof. Ijaz Khan
Dept of International Relations
University of Peshawar

There is a continuous talk of an insurgency in FATA and the need to Counter Insurgency (COIN) action there since at least 2003-4. In 2004, Pakistan Army moved into FATA for COIN operations.  Experts and others interested have strong opinion about how to end insurgency in FATA restore ‘writ of the State’ there.
One plans and acts according to the problem or challenge one is facing. Like a doctor can only prescribe correct medicine if s/he diagnoses the disease correctly, decision makers must first correctly identify the problem, its level, intensity and location, assess their own capabilities and take a decision accordingly. The debate revolves around a situation in FATA and more specifically in the two agencies, North and South Waziristan. That situation is termed as insurgency and experts and others interested give opinion on how to deal with it, suggesting various counter insurgency policies and actions. The contention of this scribe is the situation in Waziristan and rest of FATA is not that of insurgency. This mistake in identifying the situation has resulted in counterproductive policies and actions.

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