Saturday, June 2, 2018

US DoD 1999 Forecast: "Pakistan Disappears By 2015"

Asia 2025, a US Defense Department Study produced in summer of 1999, forecast that Pakistan would "disappear" as an independent state by 2015. It further forecast that Pakistan would become part of a "South Asian Superstate" controlled by India as a "regional hegemon".  Two Indian-American "South Asia experts" contributed to this study.  Much of the forecast in its "New South Asian Order" section appears to be wishful thinking of its Indian contributors.



New South Asian Order:

Here are the Key Points of Pentagon's Asia 2025 Report on South Asia region:

1. Pakistan is "near collapse" in 2010 while India is making "broad progress".

2.  Iranian "moderation" in 2010 while Afghanistan remains "anarchic hotbed".

3. Pakistan is "paralyzed" after an "Indo-Pak war 2012".

4. US launches conventional strike on "remaining Pakistan nukes" after the "Indo-Pak war 2012.

5. China "blinks at US-India Collusion".

6. Pakistan "disappears".



Indian-American Contributors: 

The list of people who contributed to this study included two Indian-Americans:  Ashley Tellis and Rajan Memon. Both of these gentlemen are considered "leading South Asia experts" in the United States.  Much of the forecast in "New South Asia Order" appears to be wishful thinking of these two Indian-American contributors.

Ashley J. Tellis is now a senior fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace specializing in international security, defense, and Asian strategic issues.  He was with the US government think tank  RAND Corp at the time the Asia 2025 report was written.

Rajan Menon is currently professor of political science at the City University of New York. He was teaching at Lehigh University back in 1999.



Earlier Forecasts of Pakistan's "Collapse":

Western and Indian forecasts of Pakistan's collapse are not new.  Lord Mountbatten, the British Viceroy of India who oversaw the partition agreed with the assessment of Pakistan made by India's leaders when he described Pakistan as a "Nissen hut" or a "temporary tent" in a conversation with Jawarhar Lal Nehru.

Here's the exact quote from Mountbatten: "administratively it [wa]s the difference between putting up a permanent building, a nissen hut or a tent. As far as Pakistan is concerned we are putting up a tent. We can do no more." The Brits and the Hindu leadership of India both fully expected Pakistan to fold soon after partition.




Dire Post-911 Forecasts of Pakistan's Demise: 

Many western analysts have forecast Pakistan's demise as Pakistan struggles to deal with terrorism at home. Among them is former President George W. Bush's adviser David Kilcullen.

"We're now reaching the point where within one to six months we could see the collapse of the Pakistani state, also because of the global financial crisis, which just exacerbates all these problems. . . . The collapse of Pakistan, al-Qaeda acquiring nuclear weapons, an extremist takeover -- that would dwarf everything we've seen in the war on terror today", said Bush Iraq adviser, David Kilcullen, on the eve of Pakistan Day in 2009 commemorating Pakistan Resolution of 1940 that started the Pakistan Movement leading to the creation of the nation on August 14, 1947. Kilcullen is not alone in the belief that Pakistani state is in danger of collapse.

Others, such as Shahan Mufti of the Global Post, argued in 2009 that Pakistan is dying a slow death with each act of terrorism on its soil.

Resilient Pakistan:

Pakistan has defied many dire forecasts of doom and gloom since its birth. Some Indian and western writers and journalists present caricatures of Pakistan that bear no resemblance to reality.  They portray Pakistan as a artificial and deeply divided failed state. What they fail to see is  Pakistan is not one or two dimensional; it's much more complex as explained by Christophe Jaffrelot in his book "The Pakistan Paradox: Instability and Resilience".

Political, military, religious, ethnic, sectarian, secular,  conservative and liberal forces are constantly pushing and pulling to destabilize it but Pakistan remains resilient with its strong nationalism that has evolved after 1971. Pakistan is neither a delusion nor owned by mullahs or military as claimed by some of Pakistan's detractors.

In a 2015 Op Ed for NDTV titled "What Modi Has Not Recognized About Pakistan", Indian politician Mani Shankar Aiyar recognized Pakistani nationalism as follows:

"..unlike numerous other emerging nations, particularly in Africa, the Idea of Pakistan has repeatedly trumped fissiparous tendencies, especially since Pakistan assumed its present form in 1971. And its institutions have withstood repeated buffeting that almost anywhere elsewhere would have resulted in the State crumbling. Despite numerous dire forecasts of imminently proving to be a "failed state", Pakistan has survived, bouncing back every now and then as a recognizable democracy with a popularly elected civilian government, the military in the wings but politics very much centre-stage, linguistic and regional groups pulling and pushing, sectarian factions murdering each other, but the Government of Pakistan remaining in charge, and the military stepping in to rescue the nation from chaos every time Pakistan appeared on the knife's edge. The disintegration of Pakistan has been predicted often enough, most passionately now that internally-generated terrorism and externally sponsored religious extremism are consistently taking on the state to the point that the army is so engaged in full-time and full-scale operations in the north-west of the country bordering Afghanistan that some 40,000 lives have been lost in the battle against fanaticism and insurgency".

Summary:

A 1999 US Defense Department study titled "Asia 2025" forecast Pakistan's collapse by 2015.  It further said that Pakistan would become part of a "South Asian Superstate" controlled by India as a "regional hegemon". Two of the study's contributors were "South Asia experts" of Indian origin. Much of the South Asia section of this study appears to be wishful thinking rather than serious analysis.  Resilient Pakistan has defied this and many other similar forecasts of its demise since its birth. 

12 comments:

Ahmad F. said...

This is hilarious. Why would any forecaster ever make a "point forecast." Forecasting is very difficult,especially about the future: that is quote from the physicist Neil Bohr.

At the minimum, one has to do scenarios. Recall I laid out five or six scenarios of Pakistan's future in my talk to the US Army War college in July 2001. Professor Ahsan Ahrari was the moderator. There were several speakers. I published the scenarios in the Karachi-based publication, Defence Journal.

http://www.defencejournal.com/2001/august/security.htm

Riaz Haq said...

Ahmad: " This is hilarious. Why would any forecaster ever make a "point forecast." Forecasting is very difficult,especially about the future: that is quote from the physicist Neil Bohr."


The people who made this forecast are all “scholars” working for RAND and other “think tanks” or teach at US universities. They were hired by the US DoD to do this serious “study”

Skyhawk said...

Thanks to Almighty Allah and thanks to Pak Army and Intelligence agencies..

Allah is the best planner...

kia amrika tay kia amrika ka shorba...

Hasan said...

Riaz Sb,

Great article, and a joy to read. I take the same pleasure you do in reading the wealth of substandard literature out there penned by hindustanis with adorably overactive imaginations. Another who comes to mind is Sumit Ganguly, who has dedicated an entire life to poring over Pakistan with the traditional obsession of a jilted partner. In Newsweek back in 2008 he wrote an article excitedly predicting the collapse of Pakistan; unsurprisingly, the editorial team have not responded to any of my regular queries since then, about how that prediction is working out!

The real comedy comes from the attempts that these sheltered pseudo-intellectuals make to couch their fantastical hatred in vaguely strategic vocabulary: "Total reorientation of energy and economic flows from E-W to N-S axis"?! It reminds me of the excitement I would feel when playing online strategy games as a young teenager, babbling on with similar verbiage without having any real idea what I was talking about.

In short, if these are the master strategists and policy makers in hindustan's corridors of power, us Pakistanis don't have anything to fear. Keep up the good work, I love your blog.

Hasan

Ahmad F. said...

I know Ashley Tellis. He is a Steve Cohen protege. One of the others that some of you is Sumit Ganguly. Full of venom. I have had a heated debate with him when he was visiting Stanford.

Riaz Haq said...

Ahmad: "One of the others that some of you is Sumit Ganguly. Full of venom. I have had a heated debate with him when he was visiting Stanford"



You probably conceded too much to Sumit Ganguly but that wasn't good enough for him.

He and others like him demand total and complete agreement with their venomous views on Pakistan.

I do think, however, that most Americans who work with them are not naive. They see these specimen serving a purpose.

Here's an example.

There's a guy by the name of Raghubir Goyal who covers the White House for some dubious Indian publication.

He's rarely called upon to ask a question during press briefings but everyone knows what he's going to ask: What is the US going to do about all of the latest terrible things Pakistan is supposedly guilty of?

But the successive White House press secretaries have used him when they're in a jam on some issue and they're trying to distract.

Reporters in Washington have given it the moniker "Goyal Foil".

http://www.riazhaq.com/2017/01/goyal-foil-pakistan-obsessed-indian.html


19640909rk said...

Dear Riaz Bhai. Pakistan disappeared in 1971. Bangladesh was the REAL Pakistan. What is left overs are now calling themselves Pakistan.

Riaz Haq said...

19640909rk "Pakistan disappeared in 1971. Bangladesh was the REAL Pakistan. What is left overs are now calling themselves Pakistan."


The DoD's "Pakistan disappears by 2015" was made in 1999. Why didn't they know "Pakistan disappeared in 1971"? I guess you know a lot more about Pakistan than your fellow Indian "intellectuals" Ashley Tellis and Rajan Menon.

Hasan said...

Not to mention the fact that the original Lahore Resolution (and the cornerstone of the Pakistan's creation) cited only the parts of the subcontinent that fly the green and white flag today. But I guess when the intellectual bankruptcy of our friendly neighbours is exposed, "1971" is the only retreat that they have. Funny times...

Hasan

Riaz Haq said...

Pakistan’s civil–military imbalance is misunderstood
14 June 2018
Author: Hussain Nadim, University of Sydney

The reality is a lot more complicated than this Eurocentric view of Pakistan’s civil–military relations, which tends to reinforce a perception of Pakistan that serves Western powers and interests. At the core of this Eurocentrism is a tendency to view Pakistan’s civil–military relations through a foreign policy lens, while almost entirely neglecting the domestic political and structural issues at play. Western commentary also tends to treat civilian political leaders as passive actors, overlooking their role in the imbalance.

The civilian and military leadership in Pakistan are on the same page when it comes to foreign and security policies. Disagreements are only over the right methods for achieving these foreign policy goals, and reflect an internal power struggle rather than an ideological difference between civilian and military factions.

For instance, after former prime minister Nawaz Sharif took power at the 2013 elections, he was interested in bold steps to move quickly on peace with India — often even going beyond state protocol and opening backdoor channels. The Pakistan Army was not disinterested in peace with India. Military leaders just wanted to mend relations in a systematic way that would not compromise Pakistan’s interests and that would make peace last beyond rhetoric.

Military leaders advised caution and small steps to achieving sustainable peace with India — advice which Sharif ignored. After several months of futile attempts to court Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who pressed hard on Pakistan after his rise to power, Sharif faced an embarrassing situation. He accepted that his strategy had been a failure and allowed the military to devise a new strategy to engage India.

Civilian and military leaders were similarly split over issues of method when it came to tackling terrorist safe havens inside the country. In 2013, the then new government under Sharif was not interested in launching operations inside the country against the Taliban and other extremist actors. The government instead began peace talks with the terrorist outfits despite repeated advice from the Pakistan Army to the contrary.

The Pakistan army pushed the view that terrorist outfits use ‘peace talks’ as a pretence to regroup, develop credibility and then launch attacks again when the government is vulnerable. Months later, when the terrorists continued their attacks on Pakistan and US forces despite the ongoing negotiations with the Pakistani government, Sharif again was sheepish in front of Pakistan’s security establishment and allowed the military to launch an operation.

When it comes to Pakistan’s current foreign policy posture, there appears to be no rupture in civil–military relations. Both civilian and military leaders support deep ties with China, opening up to Russia, balancing the Middle East, defying the United States and finding a sustainable peace with India and Afghanistan. Even the ‘Dawn leaks’ controversy was less a matter of disagreement over foreign policy than a case of the civilian government trying to embarrass the military establishment.

While civil and military leaders in Pakistan are locked in a power struggle, they are on the same page in terms of foreign and security policy — which is why Pakistan has seen much policy continuity over the past four decades. Civilian leaders pitch this domestic power struggle to international audiences as a matter of ‘foreign policy’ and a ‘fight for democracy’ for the purposes of seeking international endorsements that can be leveraged in the local power tussle.

This absence of nuance in Western academic writing and commentaries on Pakistan is not just a blind spot. It is deliberate neglect whereby the dominant characterisation of Pakistan’s civil–military relations is constructed to suit Western political interests that include aligning Pakistan’s national security policies with that of the West, and having a strong check on its nuclear program.

Riaz Haq said...

Media's Use of Propaganda to Persuade People's Attitude, Beliefs and Behaviors
Johnnie Manzaria & Jonathon Bruck
War & Peace: Media and War

https://web.stanford.edu/class/e297c/war_peace/media/hpropaganda.html

Since propaganda is such a powerful tool and because people are so susceptible of it, it is our goal in this paper to outline how to analyze propaganda, the techniques that are used through case studies of the media's portrayal of nuclear power for France and Pakistan, and how one can defend against the influence of propaganda.

Why Were Pakistan and France Chosen?

In selecting subjects for the case study, it became increasingly important to select countries where there would be a clear advantage for the United States media to favor the atomic power of one over the other. For instance, France has historically—as far back as the American Revolution—been a United States ally, not to mention a close economic partner. Especially at the start of the 1960’s, when France exploded their first atomic bomb, the relationship between the two countries was steadily growing tighter through the formation of NATO in 1949, with the common communist enemy for both countries ensuring cooperation. Therefore, there is a logical connection between the French prosperity and American welfare.

The relationship is not so reciprocal between the United States and Pakistan. A Muslim nation, Pakistan has conflicted with United States interest in and support of Israel. The ties between the United States and Pakistan are not very strong, and there is no United States gain in the creation of a strong Pakistan.

Based on the relations between the United States and France and Pakistan, we predicted that propaganda would exist in the American media that portrays the powerful nuclear technology of France significantly more positively than that of Pakistan. We will analyze specific examples of such propaganda based on a methodical process as described below.

How to Analyze Propaganda

Sine propaganda has become a systematic process it is possible to analyze how the media has used it in shaping our opinions about France having a nuclear bomb verse Pakistan. Propaganda can be broken into ten stages when analyzing it in detail. These stages are: 1) the ideology and purpose of the propaganda campaign, 2) the context in which the propaganda occurs, 3) identification of the propagandist, 4) the structure of the propaganda organization, 5) the target audience, 6) media utilization techniques, 7) special various techniques, 8) audience reaction to various techniques, 9) counterpropaganda, if present, and 10) effects and evaluation (Jowett and O'Donnell 213).

While it is possible to go into detail about each point, we are mainly concerned with numbers six and seven: What techniques the media uses. There are many techniques and persuasion tactics the media uses to disseminate information. We will specifically focus on three case studies in the France / Pakistan nuclear issue that highlight different tactics the media use. What is important to understand about all the tactics is that no matter which one is being used they all follow the same criteria: it must be seen, understood, remembered, and acted upon. Thus, propaganda can be evaluated according to its ends and interestingly enough this is the same criteria that advertiser use every day in ads, and commercials in "selling" a product.

Riaz Haq said...

Media's Use of Propaganda to Persuade People's Attitude, Beliefs and Behaviors
Johnnie Manzaria & Jonathon Bruck
War & Peace: Media and War

https://web.stanford.edu/class/e297c/war_peace/media/hpropaganda.html

Case Study #1: Social Proof, Societal Norms, Similarity, and Dehumanization

Studying media coverage of Pakistan’s nuclear achievement, it becomes clear that a certain amount of propaganda was used to make Pakistan appear threatening. The fact that Pakistan developed the technology was not what shaped the articles, but rather how this information was presented to the reader. In a sense, the propagandists were looking to turn Pakistan into an enemy of sorts, a country to be feared, instead of embraced.

One method used to by propagandists to create an enemy is through the technique of social proof. One way in which we process information is by observing what other people are doing that are similar to us or linking them to social norms. "When we are unsure of ourselves, when the situation is unclear or ambiguous, when uncertainty reigns, we are most likely to look to and accept the actions of others as correct" (Cialdini 106). Since it is almost impossible for the common American to be an expert in nuclear cause and effects, he looks to what others say as a means to form his opinion. This allows him to be persuade to an ideology not of his own. Furthermore, it is possible to rely on past stereotypes as form of linking one idea to another group.

For example, articles that took such an approach attempted to use a subset of social proof, where one casts the enemy by declaring it to be a friend of an already established enemy. For instance, in order to persuade the American public to think of Pakistan in such terms, media will link Pakistan to historically defined United States enemies such Libya, Iran, Iraq and the former Soviet Union. This tactic plays on the principle of social proof in which people look for justifications to quickly form their beliefs. Thus, linking to a country America already has shared beliefs about quickly allows one to associate and project the existing beliefs on the new group, which in this case is Pakistan.

An article in the Washington Post took such an approach by starting with a quote from the Iranian Foreign Minister, congratulating Pakistan. "From all over the world, Muslims are happy that Pakistan has this capability," the Minister was quoted at the start of the article (Moore and Khan A19). By beginning with this quote, the article ensured a link would be established between Iran and Pakistan, playing off the propaganda theory of similarity, in which we fundamentally like people who are similar to us and share our beliefs, values, and ideas. Therefore, an object deemed as bad or dissimilar will make all associated objects bad as well and allows the media to use social proof and similarity to create an enemy as friend of enemy. Arguably, the presentation of this quote may be deemed important factually for the development of the article, but the placement of the quote right at the start of the article strongly suggest propagandistic intentions.

To strengthen the feel of Pakistan as a friend of the enemy, the article continues to use the dissimilar tactic or hatred through association by further linking Pakistan with Syria Libya:

At the same time, the prospect that Pakistan could share its nuclear technology with other Islamic states, or serve as their protector, concerns many Western analysts, who fear that nuclear materials and technology may fall into the hands of countries the West has branded sponsors of terrorism, such as Syria and Libya (Moore and Khan A19).