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Old 03-07-2017   #20
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Default Asia's quiet superpower: the Pakistan Army - two replies

Two "lurkers", both SME, on this topic have provided comments.

A general reply:
The author has overstretched his imagination. If we believe the author that Pakistan is teacher of all Arab armies then utter and most humiliating defeats at the hands of Israelis does not speak well for the teaching skills of the teacher. Where did he get the information that majority of military was in favor of joining the Yemen adventure? I have interacted with a large number of officers of all ranks including many close to Raheel Sharif on this topic. They could not say it openly but privately they communicated with me that majority of officers were against it. Of course Shia officers were pretty acidic in their response. The case of soldiers is a bit different. They mainly come from the conservative, rural areas and their view is shaped by holy places in Saudi Arabia and they may see it as defending holy places.
From the cited article above:
....the Pakistan army is the only non-sectarian army in the Muslim world - it has had Shia Hazara chief of staffs, Sunnis and several Christian generals.
During General Mussharraf’s time, a number of senior officers were Shia including some Corps Commanders and the GOC of the Special Service Group (SSG, a SOF unit). Many participated in operations against militants. However, since then Shia numbers have dwindled in senior ranks. Among the rank and file of the Northern Light Infantry that recruits from northern areas with significant Shia population this unit has a good number of Shia soldiers. Christians are only a handful and to my knowledge now no one with now holds a senior post. A two star Christian Major General Noel recently retired. I don’t know much about their numbers in Air Force and Navy.
The second lurker pointed to Shashank Joshi's (also of RUSI) commentary on the Indian and Pakistani role in the Middle East:

He notes that:
Today, Pakistan’s presence is smaller but still includes a squadron of pilots at the UAE’s Al Ain Airbase and two brigades in Saudi Arabia.
Curiously the current IISS 'Military Balance' does not show the two brigades. Perhaps the soldiers serve within Saudi units?

Someone knows how to needle Pakistan in the UAE:
...Emirati minister immediately after Pakistan’s parliament voted against involvement (in Yemen) in 2015. Pakistan would pay a ‘heavy price’. This is perhaps one reason why, on 26 January, Mohammed bin Zayed bin Sultan Al-Nahyan, the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and the Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE armed forces, watched the Indian military parade through New Delhi for the country’s Republic Day. Al-Nahyan, who was invited as chief guest, had been greeted at the airport, against protocol, by Prime Minister Narendra Modi himself.

Last edited by davidbfpo; 03-07-2017 at 01:20 PM. Reason: 12,872v
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arab, bahrain, intervention, iran, jordan, middle east, pakistan, saudi arabia, yemen

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