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Ayesha Siddiqa’s “Military Inc.” Causes Waves in Pakistan

Posted on June 1, 2007
Filed Under >Adil Najam, Books, Politics
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Adil Najam

As was expected – but much more so than expected becasue of its timing – Ayesha Siddiqa’s new book Military Inc.: Inside Pakistan’s Military Economy is causing waves in Pakistan and abroad.

True to form, the establishment has bothed up things even more than usual by trying to mess with the book’s launch in Islamabad. That only made the launch an even bigger news than it would have been. Here, for example, is the top of the page, front page news item from Dawn (June 1, 2007):

A book putting a critical spotlight on the military’s business nooks was launched from a virtual sanctuary on Thursday and some high-profile political reviewers seized upon it to denounce the army’s role in Pakistani politics.

The launching of the book, Military Inc: Inside Pakistan’s Military Economy, by Dr Ayesha Siddiqa, a military analyst, was due to have taken place at the capital’s elitist Islamabad Club. But the author told a surprised audience that not only the club cancelled the booking of its auditorium, “all hotels in Islamabad were also told� by unspecified authorities not to allow the use of their halls for this, forcing the organisers to find a sanctuary at a third floor room provided by a non-governmental organisation.



PPP’s legal star Aitzaz Ahsan said the time had come to stand up against the military dominance while PML-N Information Secretary Ahsan Iqbal accused Pakistan army generals of not learning a lesson from other countries that said goodbye to military rule. But some other speakers had a dig also at politicians for doing little to keep the military in check while being in power and at times celebrating the ouster of their rivals. Mr Aitzaz Ahsan said the expose of Ayesha, who puts the net worth of the army’s commercial empire at Rs200 billion, had come at a “defining moment� in Pakistan’s history following President Pervez Musharraf’s controversial charge-sheeting and suspension of Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry.

He narrated what he called the military’s moves in the past to convert Pakistan into a national security state contrary to the Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah’s vision of a welfare state and to forge an alliance with mullahs in search of an ideological justification for this, but said he thought now “a watershed has come�. Mr Ashan, who heads Justice Iftikhar’s legal team, saw “a turning point� in the March 9 presidential action against the chief justice that plunged the country into a judicial crisis and said: “We must grasp it.� Cheers went up in the congested premises of the NGO Leadership for Environment and Development as Mr Ahsan referred to what he called an unexpected “no� by the chief justice to the president’s demand for his resignation and, in a reference to the nationwide protest movement by lawyers, opposition political activists and the civil society, said: “The spillway of the Tarbela Dam has opened now.� He said although the chief justice would not speak about the presidential reference pending before the five-judge Supreme Judicial Council or his challenge to the reference before a 13judge bench of the Supreme Court, it was out of compulsion that an affidavit was filed on his behalf on Tuesday about what happened to him during his March 9 meeting with the president and for some days afterwards. “We were compelled to file that affidavit,� Mr Ahsan said, citing comments made by President Musharraf about the case as the reason.

Mr Iqbal rejected as a myth usual accusations holding politicians responsible for four military coups in Pakistan’s history and put the blame on what he called ambitions of army chiefs who toppled civilian governments from General Mohammad Ayub Khan, who later became field marshal, to General Musharraf. Comparing the ills of military interventions in politics to what cancer does to human body, he said Ayub Khan struck in October 1958 to pre-empt scheduled elections next year, while General Yahya Khan snatched power from him in 1969 at “virtual gunpoint� to prevent a handover to a National Assembly Speaker from then East Pakistan in the midst of a national democratic movement.

General Mohammad Zia-ulHaq, he recalled, seized power on June 5, 1977 a day after then prime minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and the opposition Pakistan National Alliance had agreed to hold fresh elections. He said Pakistan faced no bankruptcy despite international sanctions for its 1998 nuclear tests and “everything was normal� when General Musharraf, after being sacked, toppled then prime minister Nawaz Sharif on Oct 12, 1999. Mr Zafar Abbas, resident editor of Dawn, Islamabad, and Dr Farrukh Saleem, also complimented the 292-page book published by the Oxford University Press.

It speaks about the role of the military power in transforming the Pakistani society, armed forces becoming an independent class entrenched in the corporate sector and their five giant welfare foundations, or conglomerates, running thousands of businesses ranging from petrol pumps to industrial plants.

I have not yet read the book myself, however, I have talked about it with Ayesha many times – most recently in Boston some weeks ago – and am generally familiar with the thesis of the book. But, then, so is most of Pakistan. It is that the Military’s economic footprint has become too large for teh military’s own good. From cereal to banks to airlines, what she calls ‘Military Inc.’ is now everywhere in Pakistan’s economic life. Her argument is that this is nietehr good for Pakistan nor the military.

I am looking forward to reading and reviewing the book, which Ayesha has promised to send me soon. Meanwhile, we will keep an eye out for substantive reviews of this undoubtedly important work.

120 Comments on “Ayesha Siddiqa’s “Military Inc.” Causes Waves in Pakistan”

  1. Kruman says:
    June 1st, 2007 10:53 am

    This kind of work is the need of the hour. I commend Dr Ayesha for the audacity to venture into the hitherto “no-go” area, where she critically analyzed the business interests of the naPak Army Incorporated.

    On a related note it is very disappointing to see that the corps commanders are nothing but a bunch of yes-men and sycophants. A statement from ISPR says that the corps commanders reposed full confidence in Musharraf’s policies. They should’ve taken him to task for the judicial crisis, asking him to withdraw the reference against the chief justice.

    One thing is clear now, 60 years ago there was a movement to expel the Brits and create Pakistan. Today there needs to be another mass movement to end the military occupation of Pakistan. Shame upon the generals who break their oath and commit acts of high treason by subverting the constitution.

  2. Akif Nizam says:
    June 1st, 2007 11:27 am

    I read a similar post on BBC yesterday and then I was watching GEO where the interior minister of Pakistan was giving a speech and saying that the govt. is not going to allow attacks on the military and the judiciary. I think he was talking about some new law that may be forthcoming to curtial such speech.

    Things are going down the drain in a hurry for this govt. and mostly due to their own stupidity !

  3. Almakky says:
    June 1st, 2007 12:05 pm

    Here is one of the article on “The Hindu” regarding Ayesha’s book. And it has some have some interesting insights (those who have not read the book)..i.e.

    The beneficiaries are primarily officers, both serving and retired, but the author says the `Milbus’(BTW “Milbus” stands for Military Business) harvest is reaped by a wider circle of civilian businessmen and politicians who have decided in their own interests to play the game. And in this, says Ms. Siddiqa, lies the key to Pakistan’s story of repeated military rule. Civilian `clients’ are bound in predatory partnerships with the military, in turn strengthening it institutionally and increasing its appetite for power and profit.
    In Pakistan, `Milbus’ is present in all three sectors: agriculture, manufacturing, and services. And it operates at three levels: as an institution, through its subsidiaries, and through individuals.
    At the level of the institution, for instance, the military runs National Logistic Cell, the biggest freight transportation company in Pakistan. Its fleet of 1,689 vehicles is one of the largest in public sector transportation in Asia. The company is also engaged in construction of roads, bridges, and wheat storage facilities. The NLC is technically a department of the Ministry of Planning and Development but its ground operations are run by the army, and it is staffed by serving army officials. The net worth of NLC in 2000-01 was an estimated $68.35 million.

    http://www.hindu.com/2007/04/19/stories/2007041902931200.htm

  4. Anwar says:
    June 1st, 2007 12:31 pm

    As Adil mentioned the thesis of the book is well understood by Pakistanis. Several years ago I had jokingly mentioned to some friends connected to the GOP to constitutionally hand over Pakistan to the Fauji Foundation – this way every citizen would have become a stakeholder in the business.
    I am hopeful after reading this book ordinary citizens will understand the cruelty rendered to farmers of Okara farms by the army.
    Military enterprize also needs a market to become profitable – in this regard both military and select group of friendly civilians are embraced in coital lock that will require significant effort for undoing.
    I am not sure if the book has also touched the interests of army in the foreign lands – overseas deployment is the largest component of foreign exchange earning. There is hardly any accounting of that money.
    If there is a stable political government in place, in my opinion, it will be decade long effort set this mess straight – until then look forward to new defence housing schemes, privitisation, and guests from the holy land to visit Pakistan and convince people to support the military government.

  5. June 1st, 2007 1:08 pm

    Here is something from my blog I thought of yesterday when I read this news item:

    I received an email several years ago that listed the number of major Pakistani institutions that were either owned by the military or were now under direct control of the military. The list was eye opening, and frightening. Majors, Colonels, Brigadiers and Admirals (current or retired) were scattered all over the map and held positions that they simply could not have held by sheer merit. The list of industries where military or ex-military were in charge included steel mills, sugar factories, cement factories, fertilizer factories, cereal factories, banks, logistics companies, construction companies, utilities, even universities and other higher education institutions.

  6. sidhas says:
    June 1st, 2007 1:34 pm

    You are right, I would not have known about it. Must be a interesting read. I looking forward to it.

  7. Mujnoon says:
    June 1st, 2007 1:39 pm

    I have been anticipating the arrival of this book for some time now and am really glad it has come at this juncture. Am also happy of the attention it is getting.

    Having said that recent developments are worrying especially with respect to the highly unusual move by the ISPR to release a statement on behalf of the Corps Commanders (this is completely unprecedented in the history of Pakistan Army). Moreover it is now clear that the Govt. is going to crackdown on the freedom of the media. At this point the Govt. is about to get increasingly oppressive…they are past caring about their reputations etc. Now it’s all about holding on to power.

    The line has been drawn in the sand. It’s the Pakistan Army versus the rest of Pakistan. The campaign by civil society is highly encouraging, but what is demoralizing is the complete and total absence of honorable men and women in the Govt. (be that the army, bureaucracy or members of the ruling party).

  8. Akif Nizam says:
    June 1st, 2007 1:52 pm

    $27.00 (after discount) for a paperback edition !!!

  9. Mutazalzaluzzaman Tarar says:
    June 1st, 2007 1:54 pm

    I’m sure the publishers are thankful to Mushy for the extra publicity. another braindead move by the intellectual giants that are Durrani, Sheeda Tulli, etc. now, I’ll be buying it for sure.

    I’ve never seen such concerted, public opposition to the army before. there’s always been some resentment but now it’s being expressed openly. if only the political leadership wasn’t so hellbent on watching out for its own interest. BB will not be forgotten for her treachery at this critical juncture.

    either way, change is in the air. the army would do well to sense that and move on. regardless of what happens whoever takes over after Mushy should strip the army of all its power, authority, glory, etc. file cases against these traitors. try Mushy for treason, hang him, strip him of his rank, awards, medals, etc. strike his record out off the army. make the army impotent (which it already is when it comes to the battlefield). enough of the jarnails and the karnails. go back to the barracks and stay there.

  10. KO says:
    June 1st, 2007 2:00 pm

    Sadly, the book has been banned in Pakistan. See http://ko.offroadpakistan.com/pakistan/2007_06/military_inc_inside_pakistans_military_economy.html or click above.

  11. June 1st, 2007 2:23 pm

    I look forward to reading it. As KO points out the book is banned in Pakistan (not surprising).

    For those wanting to procure it online, the book is available Amazon

  12. Almakky says:
    June 1st, 2007 2:48 pm

    Army walaye Ghar ko aag laga rahae hain ghar k chiragh saye…

    Military top brass showing its muscles by banning book, banning channels, banning politicians ….this is getting ugly now. Very Sad!!!

  13. June 1st, 2007 3:06 pm

    so true Bilal,
    infact they even penetrate smaller places like Pakistani schools spread around the world especially in Middle East. After 1999, many principals and administrators replaced by Rtd. Col……

  14. Moeen Bhatti says:
    June 1st, 2007 3:44 pm

    I heard Ayesha talking about her book on Voice of America talk show. They had also invited a fauji boot, a retired major, who is in politics now. His IQ semmed to be around 60 or something. Ayesha also mentioned that her phones are being tapped and she and her family is being harressed by intelligence agencies. Gen Aslam Baig was also invited on the talk show and he didn’t have any problem with the book. The only positive thing I see in this senerio is that people of Pakistan are getting some insight.

  15. Ejaz Asi says:
    June 1st, 2007 3:57 pm

    If you visit the Amazon URL Adil has provided, Amazon says: Better Together with “In the Line of Fire” :)
    I thought it was an accidental irony but the irony nevertheless.

    One of the lesser popular myth Pakistan Army has created in defending the existence and economic strength of its organizations is that these institutes (Fauji Foundation, Army Welfare Trust etc.) exist to support the “families” and spouses of retired Armed Forces personnel. Well, unfortunately, I have only come across only more of the distasteful families who don’t speak much higher about the foundation and its support to ordinary soldiers to officers of lower command. But I guess many people don’t also know that there’s a difference of power, influence and growth of a Major in Army who’s been an ADC of a General or led successfully a battalion at the border or such than the majority who doesn’t go past the rank of Major mostly. And then there are issues and intricacies of inter-corps and inter-division professional rivalries and so on which are known to even lesser people. For example, for the whole Signals corps, see how many 4 star generals are there as compared with those of Artillery and Armed Corps. And I haven’t even added Infantry who actually bags most of the top positions (did I mention almost all COAS have been affiliated with infantry one way or another) Sure the sheer size and professional competency of Infantry men put them at the fore-front but I am not sure if that still satisfies many officers in the other corpses. Imagine a mr. no body (who hasn’t had anyone in Army or politics before him) waiting for his time to be promoted as Col. and all the officers deciding for him aren’t even from his corpse :)

    The point is, many of us don’t know of how Army works internally. We, as Pakistani nation, for good or bad I am not sure, have made our officers and soldiers LARGER THAN LIFE (recap to pre-1965 or hell, even during Kargill and Nuclear tests) which has led us NOT TO QUESTION anything out of mundane, anything that’s other than what is being throwing down our throats. We, as a nation, too have led ourselves in creating a “mythical figure” who cares for the country and Islam only. I, in no way, am questioning the professional commitment and dedication, it’s the intent and other reasons as to why soldiers go to war and conflicts that I want others to think about.

    Many soldiers and officers of lower ranks and others, more so in recent times, have grown equal distaste and discomfort against civilian Pakistanis (mostly against media which I think is natural) and there’s little chance of it getting any better with hightening opposition and never-before-seen hatred of this status against Armed forces. How on earth do you think they are gonna go to any conflict and war thinking about Pakistan? If you ever had a chance of being with one, you’d know the answer is simpler and probably shocking. And yet every day the gulf becomes wider and wider for the pursuit of power and happiness of one man. How sad.

    (I am not only Punjabi but have studied in a cadet college solely funded by GHQ with my father having served in Army AVN and didn’t any other Govt. job afterwards. Thought just to clear my standings)

  16. MQ says:
    June 1st, 2007 4:15 pm

    Pakistan has begun to look like Suharto’s Indonesia.

  17. Ejaz Asi says:
    June 1st, 2007 4:23 pm

    While we are at it, let me sincerely show my discomfort and worries over the Armed Forces’ attitude towards furthering the education. There are many bright minds in Army which unfortunately go unnoticed or played down because the “working of Army” don’t allow you to study formal education much further with fewer and fewer exceptions. As I mentioned, Signals Corps who comprises on the most educated wing of the Army is NOT the one who enjoys a better status and respect despite the rising needs of innovation, technological advancements and more professional attitude towards crisis-management (from technology standpoint).

    Another area where Army has clearly been dumbfounded is the notorious ISPR. Now, ISPR is not just an equivalent of “Ministry of Information and News of Army” they are much more because of the relationship and working of Army. I wish someone bring it to parliament and decide to disjoint (of the sorts) ISPR with the regular Army and only those could joing ISPR who have journalistic ambitions as well as can be freely allowed and encouraged to study more. I know there are many who have masters and even PhD degrees but fewer and fewer among different corpses. Not just that but anyone from Artillery or Services or even Signals could go and join ISPR for couple of months/years and then join back. Sure it would have some merits but how come you never know about these matters? I find this particular issue falling under the domain of Parliament because of its unique role of “information and news reporting” beside other related jobs to the civil society as well as within the three forces.

    While they have Fox and CNN, they do have many many Iraqi Vets or even serving Iraqi Soldiers who blog, post pictures at Flickr and so on. If Pakistani Government finds inspiration in Western media (most definitely Fox and CNN et al.) why can’t they allow more open-ended discussion and dialogue between civil and army?
    I think it’s just about the time we start treating them like Human Beings and our brothers. Nothing more nothing less.

  18. zamanov says:
    June 1st, 2007 4:52 pm

    So far I have read the first few chapters of this book and it is a solid piece of scholarly writing on military interests in business and how the corporate shenanigans of the Pakistan military is destroying the very essence of the force and its relations with civil society.

    Impeccably researched and very well written. She is a brave woman and may God protect her and her family from the corrupt feet that she has invariably stepped upon in writing this book.

    I urge everyone who can afford it to buy this book so Ms Siddiqa gets the benefit and to really find out how the military is spreading its tentacles across every realm of Pakistani society with dire consequences.

    Bravo Ms Siddiqa. I had read your articles in many newspapers before but this book is a masterpiece.

    P.S. The front cover of the book I received from Amazon has a Pakistani soldier saluting while riding atop a tank during a parade. For some reason it shows him saluting with his left hand! Can someone with a military background confirm whether that is possible or is that a Photoshop editing error?

  19. Ali says:
    June 1st, 2007 5:05 pm

    What the book fails to mention and has been a major hurdle in true democrarcy (Haqeqeqi Jamorait) is the collusion between Politician and the Army. Especially in case of B.B ji who without any doubt will be back before any announcement of elections..Its political parties like the PPP and MQM who present a even bigger danger than the Military Inc…Things are going to get worse before they get better for pakistan..There is hope though..Real revolution can only come when we have a fresh start..An attitute like Imran Khan..No deals on core issues is needed to bring true will of people in pakistan

  20. king_faisal says:
    June 1st, 2007 6:46 pm

    actually there was excitement in islamabad aal rite but that was more to do with the visit of a certain imam of a little known mosque in saudi arabia. ordinary pakistanis dont have a clue about the wajoodh of dr sahiba nor i suspect, give a hoot about her agenda. primary consumers of this book will be goras who have a problem with muslims asserting their strength and this book will be used as further evidence of why armed muslim groups should be neutered. for her efforts, i predict dr sahiba will be handsomely rewarded possibly with a nice long stint at one of those neocon think tanks that bought you the iraq war. there is a cottage industry of muslims who make a living performing tumasha at the first snap of gora fingers. in this group i would include people like hirsi, asra nomani, adjami, haqqani et al. recent additions to this group include couple of reformed ex terrorists from indonesia and the middle east. soon i suspect, dr. sahiba might be added to this list.

    the case of indonesian army in east timor provides a good example of dangerous consequences for muslim countries when conniving goras use local groups who drape themselves with the human rights cloak, to further their agendas. insurgencies have been raging all over south east asia – by muslims against buddhists in thailand and against christians in philippines. yet the only group to acquire independence has been the christian east timorese whose population is less than 1mm and the country has been in civil war since independence. in the middle east, the latest example is the drama staged by gora countries over hariri tribunal. israelis get billions in aid for killing popular palestinian leaders like dr. rantisi and shiekh yassin while syria is being ostracized even though there is no proof of syria’s involvement in hariri’s murder.

    as far as army’s role in business is concerned, its being blown completely out of proportion and rationale for existence of these businesses is being completely ignored. the only sector where army linked entity (ALE) enjoys a dominant market share is fertilizer through fauji fertilizer which is a publicly listed company in which ALE’s share is about 45%. in comparison, mansha controls the following:

    1.mcb – one of pakistan’s largest banks
    2. adamjee insurance – pak’s largest insurance company
    3. nishat – pak’s largest textile unit
    4. dg khan cement – one of the largest if not the largest cement manufacturing

    clearly mansha possess some magical power which enables him to control business whose size is far far greater than controlled by ALE. also to set the record straight, in business terms, gop is still the most powerful entity in pak through its majority or minority ownership of pak’s largest companies such as ogdc, natl bank, habib bank, nit etc. the reason for this is bhutto’s nationalization which paradoxically increased the position of ALEs because its entities were not nationalized. after nationalization, ALEs faced minimum competition from private sector and thus was able to increase market share. off course need for ALE’s arose because pakistan went to war right after its creation which resulted in armed forces acquiring dominance over other sectors. clearly there was need to look after the welfare of ex army people and given the large size, any project involving the army would automatically acquire large size.

    more on this topic later.

  21. Khawaja says:
    June 2nd, 2007 2:48 pm

    Well I think the author of this book is loosing her credibility by turning this into a big drama and focusing of sympathy for her more than contents of the book in every interview. Which is a pity because the content is really important and her thesis is the right one.

  22. Khawaja says:
    June 2nd, 2007 3:21 pm

    MQ,  think there are like 15 core commanders and then the meeting is also attended by Staff Officers from GHQ I think.

  23. Naseem says:
    June 6th, 2007 8:59 pm

    I keep feeling that there may be some topi drama here. Lets see if this case ever happens.

  24. Toryalai says:
    June 1st, 2007 8:05 pm

    I salute Aisha saddiqa’s courage for informing us about the exploitation of the public resources by the lazy generals! Wouldn’t it have been better if she had written this book in Urdu language as majority of Pakistanis can’t read in English! Or she wrote it in English just to inform the outside world. If that be the case then why should foreign/western powers be concerned about Pakistan Army’s corruption. The westerners prefer a corrupt/impotent army over a democratic rule!

  25. mazhar butt says:
    June 1st, 2007 8:41 pm

    Ayesha Siddiqa deserves fullest commendations on apprising the nation about military atrocities through her present book. She is undoubtedly an authority on the subject.I hope she will get her book also translated in Urdu for the benefit of the masses. Military seems to have got addicted to the ecstasy and ‘luxuries’ of governing its own civilian lot. If the military does not stick to its professional duties and continues to indulge in national politics and clutch on power it will soon bring the country to the very edge of catastrophe. It is high time for the executive and judiciary to function separately and keep ”within their skins”. This is the need of time and the nation.

  26. king_faisal says:
    June 1st, 2007 9:13 pm

    edward said gave an interview in which he discusses how myths are repeated by western media until those myths get accepted as facts. That interview is of great relevance here:

    http://student.cs.ucc.ie/cs1064/jabowen/IPSC/articles/article0002772.html

    …Why do you think certain Arab authors, professors, and specialists residing in the U.S. are embraced and promoted by the major media and leading opinion journals, while others are ignored or downplayed?

    ES: I think there’s a cultural war in this country between spokespersons for the West, the U.S. and Israel, on the one hand, and those who are perceived as pro-Arab, pro-Islam, pro-Palestinian, and therefore critical of U.S. policy, on the other hand.

    This is a real cultural war. It has little to do with truth; it has little to do with seriousness of scholarship. It has to do with ideological interests. The first group is much more prevalent and receives more attention in the media, than the second group. If you are perceived as belonging to the second group, then you’re trashed and attacked in the most scandalous way.

    …This is because there is a cultural war against Islam: Muslims are considered to be the enemies of the West. On the one hand, there’s a long history of that, and, on the other, there is a sense that Muslims are basically one homogeneous people, not subject to time and place, that there is some kind of mindset that keeps them imprisoned. This sort of racism has really not been combated on a very large scale. The important thing is that it’s aided and abetted by senior academic experts, like Bernard Lewis, Ernest Gellner, and others, who get their stuff published all the time without any serious effort being made to refute them except by a few individuals.

  27. Haroon says:
    June 1st, 2007 11:51 pm

    I am myself dyingto read the book and just put order on Amazon. But I do wonder if the author is working a little to hard to make thsi controversial.

    This news in Daily Times shows that rumor about book being banned is wrong and the author is spreading some of these rumors herself to become controversial. That is not nice.

    ———-

    Dr Ayesha Siddiqa’s book ‘Military Inc.’ has attracted a great deal of interest as testified by the fact that the first edition was sold out on the day it was released (Thursday). Dr Ayesha confirmed on Friday that all 1,000 copies sold out on the day of the launch. She also said she experienced tremendous pressure in the days leading up to the book launch. “Information Minister Muhammad Ali Durrani phoned me twice to persuade me to cancel the book launch. He also wanted to see me in person but then he did not turn up.â€

  28. younas says:
    June 2nd, 2007 12:04 am

    Be careful adil Najam, when you are next time in pakistan, have you got a american passport or still travel on pakistani. SAD BUT TRUE , MY inbox is full of threatening emails from jamia hafza, to islami jamiat talba, to military Inc Wallahs
    so the couplet comes to mind
    Na tera Pakistan ,na mera pakistani
    yeh UUS ka pakistan hai ,Jo Sadar-e-Pakistan
    Long Live Islamist Dictatorship of Military Inc(Monsters Inc)

  29. KO says:
    June 2nd, 2007 2:57 am

    [quote post="721"]This news in Daily Times shows that rumor about book being banned is wrong and the author is spreading some of these rumors herself to become controversial. That is not nice.[/quote]

    It wasn’t available in Karachi bookstores yesterday. A Liberybook book branch said management recalled the books before they even started selling them.

    But today it’s being sold again, according to the papers. So there was some ham handed attempt at a ban, than someone must have realized that would be a really stupid move.

  30. Oshake says:
    June 2nd, 2007 8:53 am

    Well done to Dr Siddiqa for showing the courage to write this book. Pakistan Army has long considered itself above scrutiny, above the law. This attitude pervades all through the armed forces, not limited only to those at the top of the military pyramid. Paksitanis have accepted this without question and 30+ years of army rule is the consequence of this attitude. About time we change that.

  31. Moeen Bhatti says:
    June 2nd, 2007 8:54 am

    Listen to Ayesha about the problems she faced on the day the book was launched in ’round table’ in urdu section of Voice of America.

  32. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    June 2nd, 2007 9:14 am

    [quote comment="50624"]This kind of work is the need of the hour. I commend Dr Ayesha for the audacity to venture into the hitherto “no-go” area, where she critically analyzed the business interests of the naPak Army Incorporated.

    On a related note it is very disappointing to see that the corps commanders are nothing but a bunch of yes-men and sycophants. A statement from ISPR says that the corps commanders reposed full confidence in Musharraf’s policies. They should’ve taken him to task for the judicial crisis, asking him to withdraw the reference against the chief justice.

    One thing is clear now, 60 years ago there was a movement to expel the Brits and create Pakistan. Today there needs to be another mass movement to end the military occupation of Pakistan. Shame upon the generals who break their oath and commit acts of high treason by subverting the constitution.[/quote]

    Couldn’t agree more with you!

  33. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    June 2nd, 2007 9:15 am

    [quote comment="50638"]I read a similar post on BBC yesterday and then I was watching GEO where the interior minister of Pakistan was giving a speech and saying that the govt. is not going to allow attacks on the military and the judiciary. I think he was talking about some new law that may be forthcoming to curtial such speech.

    Things are going down the drain in a hurry for this govt. and mostly due to their own stupidity ![/quote]

    I think such a law would be the last nail in the coffin of the military elite.

  34. Aqil Sajjad says:
    June 2nd, 2007 10:38 am

    While a lot is being said and written on the independence of the judiciary, there is also a need to talk about the independence of Pemra. The step of putting Pemra under the ministry of disinformation is clearly aimed at muzzling the media and this is evident from the fact that live coverage of the CJ’s rallies has been banned.

    I get back to the point that in such a situation where the channels are unable to show something (in this case the rally), citizen journalism should take over and people, possibly participants of the rally itself, need to take videos and make them available on the internet. It won’t be as good as the TV channels providing full coverage, but it is still important to show the govt that it can not prevent the people from knowing what’s going on.

  35. Ashar says:
    June 2nd, 2007 12:42 pm

    I’ve not read the book yet and anxious to get available on Amazon. But this book is very close to reality, because I had a chance to go back to Islamabad to buy a plot to settle back in Pakistan. This is amazing that more than ninety percents of the plots for sale in every sector from F-10 to F-11 and from G-11 to D-13 are owned by army personals. They have manipulated the price so much that it is out of reach of an ordinary person living in Islamabad.

  36. yasser latif hamdani says:
    June 2nd, 2007 12:55 pm

    Freedom of speech is the cornerstone of every modern democratic society but our rulers deny us the same … Sometimes in the name of islam, some times in the name of the “integrity of Pakistan” and some times in the name of an army that has never won a war but knows well how to conquer its own people.

  37. Kruman says:
    June 2nd, 2007 2:00 pm

    Ch Nisar Ali Khan says that Musharraf has played his final trump card by having ISPR issue a statement after the corps commanders meeting in his support.

    He also says that if the support was unanimous more details of the meeting should be made public i.e. who said what.

    Ch Nisar Ali Khan hails from a family with a history of service in the army. His brother was the JCSC, I think he may have some inside news of dissenting views expressed at the meeting in GHQ.

    More on bbcurdu.com:
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/urdu/pakistan/story/2007/06/070602_corps_statement_nisar.shtml

  38. MQ says:
    June 2nd, 2007 2:18 pm

    A little off topic, but last night watching the corps commanders’ meeting on TV I was surprised to see the large number of commanders sitting around the table. (There used to only 6-9 corps commanders not too long ago.) I tried to count them but would lose count after 20-21. Then I tried to count the number of tea kettles (or was it water flasks?) sitting on the table in front of each person, but couldn’t complete the count because of the angle of the camera. Then I tried to count the black hair and gray hair separately but that didn’t work either, for most of them had jet black hair. Musharraf, of course, stood out with his light brown hair (Wella 33?) and gray temples.

  39. tina says:
    June 2nd, 2007 2:40 pm

    King Faisal, you bring up some interesting and thoughtful points, but I think it is too simple to say that anyone who criticizes a military dictatorship is a tool of the West…I think in this case it is the opposite, the Americans are behind Mush 100% and Reagan supported and possibly brought into power Zia, in case you don’t remember. Mush is the latest in the long line of “moderates” which the Americans use for their own purposes (in this case hunting down the Taliban) and when they decide he is not obedient enough to his American masters they will tear him down. Just as when they no longer needed Hussein to kill Iranians by proxy, they just got rid of him. A military dictator in thrall to the West is a dangerous thing for a country.

    If you don’t like the Americans running Pakistan, the best thing to do is encourage the formation of a true, transparent Pakistani democracy which I am sure is what Siddiqa is fighting for also. This is a path fraught with peril because really, Pakistani democracy is the LAST thing the Americans really want, all their chest beating about how they love democracy aside. All they really love is an open business environment and that is not the same thing!

    So I would encourage you to look twice at Dr. Siddiqa’s work before you class her in with Hirsi, etc. as a poodle of Western interests. Really I don’t think she is. Who is serving the American interests right now, her or Mush?

    And the talk of Israel, Syria, Palestian problem etc. I don’t think is too applicable in this situation. Every case is unique and needs to be examined on its own merits. The military is the biggest property owner in Pakistan by far and this is no problem? I know people who own businesses who seek army officer status for themselves just because not having an “in” with the military is very bad for any businessman in Pakistan. They virtually purchase their officer rankings, pouring yet more money into the coffers of the army….this is all very unhealthy. Credit must go to Siddiqa for writing this book.

  40. Aqil Sajjad says:
    June 2nd, 2007 3:13 pm

    MQ:
    Your previous post reminded me of the following article by Ayaz Amir (An excess of brass, April 27, 2001):
    http://www.dawn.com/weekly/ayaz/20010427.htm

  41. Toryalai says:
    June 2nd, 2007 7:41 pm

    I haven’t read the book yet and I would like to know if she has touched upon cantonment areas. For example how much land is needed to accommodate Pakistan’s armed forces and where they should make their ‘CHAAH’ONIS’? I’m posing this question because I am from Quetta and people in Balochistan are the most deprived one – in many ways.

    Balochistan is 43% of Pakistan and almost 25% of its population resides in and around Quetta City! Unfortunately 45% of Quetta (area wise) has been taken over by ‘Faujis’- hardly few thousand soldiers) while around two million civilians are forced to live in the remaining 55% of Quetta. What a shame! Not only that but we the natives (we were there b4 the Mughals/British/Partition) are required to have a pass (Passport/visa!) in order to go through or to the other side of the ‘CHAAH’ONI’. We really feel very strongly about this discrimination in our own ancestral land while the immigrants from Punjab, in particular, roam about freely – buying and selling our land which they acquire as part of their retirement!

    Please remember I am not anti-Pakistani/Punjabi but it hurts the way our people are treated by a bunch of thugs from the armed forces! And if we question their ‘misbehaviour’ in any forum then we are considered as ‘traitors’ while those have sold Pakistan and its poor people many times get away with their crimes and they get medals!

    I hope the editors on this forum will run some articles highlighting the role of ‘chaah’onis’ in the crowded cities and the problems they create for indigenous civilians.

    I am just hoping Dr, Saddiqa might have discussed this issue in her book.

  42. omar r. quraishi says:
    June 3rd, 2007 5:09 am

    Editorial, The News, June 3, 2007

    Censorship and the judicial crisis

    The only way forward out of the current crisis emanating from the suspension of the Chief Justice of Pakistan is for the government to withdraw its reference. If it cannot bring itself to do that then it needs to engage in a dialogue with the opposition, and President Musharraf needs to choose either the army chief post or stand for re-election as a civilian candidate. The way forward is not by imposing censorship on the print and electronic media, which seems to be the new government’s tactic for now. Not only are the threats and warnings to the media that it must fall in line and keep the ‘national interest’ paramount going to not work in this day and age, they will be thoroughly counter-productive and only exacerbate an already tense situation. The reason for the clampdown on the print and electronic media clearly has to do with the thinking in the circles that matter in this country that the whole crisis has been blown out of proportion by the media and hence it will be deflated once the media, especially the TV channels, are brought under the censorship leash.

    But the questions that need to be asked of the government are the following: Who was it that made the Chief Justice of Pakistan non-functional? What was the manner in which this action against him was taken and a presidential reference filed? Even if the charge that he was fond of extra protocol or that he asked for favours for his son is true then isn’t that also the case with many senior state functionaries? Furthermore, who carried out the attack on the office of Geo TV and this newspaper in Islamabad? Who threatened a journalist of this newspaper on a Voice of America radio show and then proceeded to deny it, only to eat his words when a recording of the show’s transcript was aired on Geo TV? What was the motive for the arrest and continued incarceration of former Mirpurkhas DIG, Saleemullah Khan, and for putting him in a prison where his life, as claimed by him, could have come under threat? And if the affidavit of the chief justice is to be believed, who confronted him on March 9 at the president’s camp office and tried to impress on him to quit his post? Who stood by and idly watched as over 40 people lost their lives in Karachi on May 12, did nothing as the offices of a TV channel came under attack by armed men for several hours on May 12 and then proceeded to hold a ‘National Unity’ rally the same evening in Islamabad, where PTV showed participants doing the bhangra and having a generally fun time? Who prevented the chief justice from leaving the premises of Karachi’s airport? Who made uncharitable remarks against judges of the Sindh High Court after the court took suo motu notice of the tragic events of May 12? Who cancelled the book launch of Ayesha Siddiqa’s Military Inc, in the process ensuring that it becomes a best-seller? Who prevented Imran Khan from entering Sindh and confined him to Lahore for three days (also in the process making him a hero to some)? Who included the names of 12 prominent journalists on a list calling them enemies of the people and placed bullets in envelopes in the cars of three of the 12?

    There are many more questions but these are some of the more pressing ones that come to mind. Surely, it wasn’t the print or the electronic media that did all these things. As has been pointed out several times in the recent past – and not just by this newspaper but by pretty much the whole print and electronic media – the media is a mirror and reflects reality. If it takes sides or begins to show a one-sided version of events as they unfold then it should be held accountable and that will be reflected via the erosion of its credibility (a la PTV). Also, if for the sake of argument, it is accepted that the media is presenting an unbalanced anti-government version then what about coverage in the international media and what of perception on the street against the government’s policies and actions, especially post-March 9?

    By pursuing such a policy, the president risks alienating (a whole lot of them have already been alienated after March 9 and then May 12) those who still see him as someone who can take on the extremists and deliver the country on a progressive and liberal path. Of course, many of these people will now be questioning the glaring dichotomy in the government’s readiness to take on the media but unwillingness to take on extremist vigilantes such as those in Lal Masjid and Jamia Hafsa, who continue to hold parts of the federal capital hostage (and as of June 1 tried to create a law and order situation at PIMS). Censoring the media will make an already bad situation worse and is advice that the government should do without. It is bad for its image domestically as well as overseas but more importantly, it will not bring any kind of advantage to its side.

    For instance, it is quite unlikely that the number of people turning out to receive the chief justice will dwindle in the coming weeks merely because the TV channels are not carrying the rallies and demonstrations live, just like the ban on Military Inc’s launch only served to increase its demand among readers. Also, in this day and age there are several ways to counter this live ban (one assumes that those behind the censorship policy are not aware of the fact that blogs have come of age in Pakistan as have websites like YouTube as so on, where such raw footage can be shown). Those who hold the reins of power need to ask themselves what it is that has brought things to this pass. Does the fact that the president of the country also happens to be army chief have something to do with the criticism that is being laid at that institution’s doorstep? Of course politicians have themselves to blame by covertly and sometimes overtly courting the army and asking it to step in but that doesn’t absolve the latter of blame in outreaching its mandate. Surely, if the president of the country were a civilian, or if the corporate and business interests of the military’s various welfare foundations not so expansive, the armed forces would have been spared much of the criticism. In the current situation regarding the action taken against the Chief Justice of Pakistan, it is only to be expected that people will ask whether the president’s being also army chief played a decisive role in the unfolding of events.

    The only way forward is to treat the cause of the crisis, not the symptoms (which is being done by what seems to be the beginning of a media clampdown). Such actions, may in the eyes of some, seem as if the government is trying to show to the country and the world at large that it is in charge, but it ends up giving the opposite impression – i.e., that it is now panicking. The government would be advised to either withdraw the reference or come to some sort of compromise with the opposition parties on the president taking a final decision on presenting himself as a civilian candidate.

  43. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    June 3rd, 2007 5:36 am

    [quote comment="51270"]I haven’t read the book yet and I would like to know if she has touched upon cantonment areas. For example how much land is needed to accommodate Pakistan’s armed forces and where they should make their ‘CHAAH’ONIS’? I’m posing this question because I am from Quetta and people in Balochistan are the most deprived one – in many ways.

    Balochistan is 43% of Pakistan and almost 25% of its population resides in and around Quetta City! Unfortunately 45% of Quetta (area wise) has been taken over by ‘Faujis’- hardly few thousand soldiers) while around two million civilians are forced to live in the remaining 55% of Quetta. What a shame! Not only that but we the natives (we were there b4 the Mughals/British/Partition) are required to have a pass (Passport/visa!) in order to go through or to the other side of the ‘CHAAH’ONI’. We really feel very strongly about this discrimination in our own ancestral land while the immigrants from Punjab, in particular, roam about freely – buying and selling our land which they acquire as part of their retirement!

    Please remember I am not anti-Pakistani/Punjabi but it hurts the way our people are treated by a bunch of thugs from the armed forces! And if we question their ‘misbehaviour’ in any forum then we are considered as ‘traitors’ while those have sold Pakistan and its poor people many times get away with their crimes and they get medals!

    I hope the editors on this forum will run some articles highlighting the role of ‘chaah’onis’ in the crowded cities and the problems they create for indigenous civilians.

    I am just hoping Dr, Saddiqa might have discussed this issue in her book.[/quote]

    The people of Queta should forcibly take away land from the Faujis.

  44. king_faisal says:
    June 3rd, 2007 6:13 am

    i wonder who planted in this news in the first place and how this was published without checking with the minister in the first place?

    without slander laws, freedom of press especially in a country like pak where lack of ethics dont mean anything:

    http://dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=200763\story_3-6-2007_pg7_28

    Durrani did not dissuade Dr Siddiqa from launching book

  45. king_faisal says:
    June 3rd, 2007 6:18 am

    tina,

    you make some interesting observations. i do agree with your point that pakistanis should not trust the americans given their track record. plus going forward, indian americans will play a big role in driving u.s. south asia policy just as yehoodis drive u.s. m.e. policy. since its in india’s interest to have a weak pakistan, that will also become a goal of americans. indian-americans will rope in the u.s. media just as yehoodis have done in their battle against arabs. its in this context that you will see more and more anti-pakistan pakistanis in the u.s. media and in the think tanks. i dont think democracy in pak will have an impact on u.s. policy because no government in pak can survive that is seen bending down to india. note that i think dr. sahiba has full right to express her views but does not mean that people who disagree with her agenda should give her a free path.

  46. king_faisal says:
    June 3rd, 2007 6:20 am

    continued from my previous post:

    its too simplistic to describe u.s. policy as being anti-islam because there have been many instances where u.s. has supported muslims when other powers have been against such as in the balkans. as far as supporting dictators go, that is a legacy of cold war. both russians as well as americans were supporting dictators all over the world. couple of muslim countries further strengthened american support by establishing diplomatic relations with israel. musharraf to his credit has not gone this route which would greatly improve his media image. good example of a dictator who enjoys very favourable u.s. media covarge is king of jordan.

    i also think americans are indifferent on the issue of pakistan leadership. americans know that they would get the same level of cooperation from the two main competitors to the pakistani throne. both bb and ns have said on record that they would continue providing assistance to americans. ns and bb’s track record confirms that policy would be no different. under ns, pak was a active member of the gulf war 1 coalition despite intense opposition from aslam beg who was the army chief at that point. also under ns, americans where whisking people from pak who were involved in terrorism. kansi’s kidnapping from pak was particulary audacious. as for bb, you should read what ayaz amir had to say about her attempts to curry favour with the americans. his old columns on bb (available on the net) are essentially carbon copy of his criticism of musharraf. i also think in the short run, americans would prefer mush to stick around because there is little chance of army under cutting a military led government.

  47. king_faisal says:
    June 3rd, 2007 6:23 am

    from my previous post:

    i think americans are indifferent on the issue of pakistan leadership. americans know that they would get the same level of cooperation from the two main competitors to the pakistani throne. both bb and ns have said on record that they would continue providing assistance to americans. ns and bb’s track record confirms that policy would be no different. under ns, pak was a active member of the gulf war 1 coalition despite intense opposition from aslam beg who was the army chief at that point. also under ns, americans where whisking people from pak who were involved in terrorism. kansi’s kidnapping from pak was particulary audacious. as for bb, you should read what ayaz amir had to say about her attempts to curry favour with the americans. his old columns on bb (available on the net) are essentially carbon copy of his criticism of musharraf. i also think in the short run, americans would prefer mush to stick around because there is little chance of army under cutting a military led government.

  48. king_faisal says:
    June 3rd, 2007 6:27 am

    lastly i think its too simplistic to describe u.s. policy as being anti-islam because there have been many instances where u.s. has supported muslims when other powers have been against such as in the balkans. as far as supporting dictators go, that is a legacy of cold war. both russians as well as americans were supporting dictators all over the world. couple of muslim countries further strengthened american support by establishing diplomatic relations with israel. musharraf to his credit has not gone this route which would greatly improve his media image. good example of a dictator who enjoys very favourable u.s. media covarge is king of jordan.

    on land alloted to amry wallahs, i dont have a problem with it. couple of my uncles retired as generals and only thing they have to show for their service was a house in defense and a toyota corolla. salaries, even for generals, is still very low and its unrealistic to expect senior army leadership to live like paupers after retirement. these days due to rapid rise in pvt sector salaries gulf between public and private sector is rapidly rising. govt employees have to be compensated if we have to attract good people. i dont have a problem if compensation takes the form of cash or land upon retirement.

  49. Toryalai says:
    June 3rd, 2007 7:11 am

    [quote comment="51350"][quote comment="51270"]I haven’t read the book yet and I would like to know if she has touched upon cantonment areas. For example how much land is needed to accommodate Pakistan’s armed forces and where they should make their ‘CHAAH’ONIS’? I’m posing this question because I am from Quetta and people in Balochistan are the most deprived one – in many ways.

    Balochistan is 43% of Pakistan and almost 25% of its population resides in and around Quetta City! Unfortunately 45% of Quetta (area wise) has been taken over by ‘Faujis’- hardly few thousand soldiers) while around two million civilians are forced to live in the remaining 55% of Quetta. What a shame! Not only that but we the natives (we were there b4 the Mughals/British/Partition) are required to have a pass (Passport/visa!) in order to go through or to the other side of the ‘CHAAH’ONI’. We really feel very strongly about this discrimination in our own ancestral land while the immigrants from Punjab, in particular, roam about freely – buying and selling our land which they acquire as part of their retirement!

    Please remember I am not anti-Pakistani/Punjabi but it hurts the way our people are treated by a bunch of thugs from the armed forces! And if we question their ‘misbehaviour’ in any forum then we are considered as ‘traitors’ while those have sold Pakistan and its poor people many times get away with their crimes and they get medals!

    I hope the editors on this forum will run some articles highlighting the role of ‘chaah’onis’ in the crowded cities and the problems they create for indigenous civilians.

    I am just hoping Dr, Saddiqa might have discussed this issue in her book.[/quote]

    The people of Queta should forcibly take away land from the Faujis.[/quote]

    Shahid Sahib, your answer is too simplistic! If 160 million people can not send these ignorant animals back to their barracks, how on earth people from a small but heavily crowded town like Quetta can do that!

    The ‘cantonment’ issue needs a proper debate across Pakistan. Army as an industry (since it’s no longer an institution) should invest in the barren lands in the mountains to make new cantonments; this will also allow the surrounding regions to prosper as a result! Plus Quetta is not a strategic zone for present day Pakistan; it was important for British as it represented their western most borders of the British-India.

  50. June 3rd, 2007 7:21 am

    Its a great work and in urdu language “Ehsan” on masses to educate them too. I salute to lady Ayesha Siddiqa taht even beig a women and living in Pak she did a courage. Its not easy to call a spade a spade.

    Akbar Shah Basha

  51. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    June 3rd, 2007 7:55 am

    [quote comment="51355"]i wonder who planted in this news in the first place and how this was published without checking with the minister in the first place?

    without slander laws, freedom of press especially in a country like pak where lack of ethics dont mean anything:

    http://dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=200763\story_3-6-2007_pg7_28

    Durrani did not dissuade Dr Siddiqa from launching book[/quote]

    Lack of ethics is the highest on the part of the Faujis who think Pakistan is their personal fief and they can do what ever they like what it as they deem fit. They should be punished for exploiting it.

  52. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    June 3rd, 2007 7:57 am

    [quote comment="51357"]tina,

    you make some interesting observations. i do agree with your point that pakistanis should not trust the americans given their track record. plus going forward, indian americans will play a big role in driving u.s. south asia policy just as yehoodis drive u.s. m.e. policy. since its in india’s interest to have a weak pakistan, that will also become a goal of americans. indian-americans will rope in the u.s. media just as yehoodis have done in their battle against arabs. its in this context that you will see more and more anti-pakistan pakistanis in the u.s. media and in the think tanks. i dont think democracy in pak will have an impact on u.s. policy because no government in pak can survive that is seen bending down to india. note that i think dr. sahiba has full right to express her views but does not mean that people who disagree with her agenda should give her a free path.[/quote]

    Dr Sahiba’s agenda is to see a prosperous Pakistan based on the principles enshrined in Islam. Army’s agenda is to loot and plunder it as much as they can, make it a social welfare state for themselves and for their posterity and to make life hell for the ordinary Pakistanis.

  53. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    June 3rd, 2007 8:07 am

    [quote comment="51366"][quote comment="51350"][quote comment="51270"]I haven’t read the book yet and I would like to know if she has touched upon cantonment areas. For example how much land is needed to accommodate Pakistan’s armed forces and where they should make their ‘CHAAH’ONIS’? I’m posing this question because I am from Quetta and people in Balochistan are the most deprived one – in many ways.

    Balochistan is 43% of Pakistan and almost 25% of its population resides in and around Quetta City! Unfortunately 45% of Quetta (area wise) has been taken over by ‘Faujis’- hardly few thousand soldiers) while around two million civilians are forced to live in the remaining 55% of Quetta. What a shame! Not only that but we the natives (we were there b4 the Mughals/British/Partition) are required to have a pass (Passport/visa!) in order to go through or to the other side of the ‘CHAAH’ONI’. We really feel very strongly about this discrimination in our own ancestral land while the immigrants from Punjab, in particular, roam about freely – buying and selling our land which they acquire as part of their retirement!

    Please remember I am not anti-Pakistani/Punjabi but it hurts the way our people are treated by a bunch of thugs from the armed forces! And if we question their ‘misbehaviour’ in any forum then we are considered as ‘traitors’ while those have sold Pakistan and its poor people many times get away with their crimes and they get medals!

    I hope the editors on this forum will run some articles highlighting the role of ‘chaah’onis’ in the crowded cities and the problems they create for indigenous civilians.

    I am just hoping Dr, Saddiqa might have discussed this issue in her book.[/quote]

    The people of Queta should forcibly take away land from the Faujis.[/quote]

    Shahid Sahib, your answer is too simplistic! If 160 million people can not send these ignorant animals back to their barracks, how on earth people from a small but heavily crowded town like Quetta can do that!

    The ‘cantonment’ issue needs a proper debate across Pakistan. Army as an industry (since it’s no longer an institution) should invest in the barren lands in the mountains to make new cantonments; this will also allow the surrounding regions to prosper as a result! Plus Quetta is not a strategic zone for present day Pakistan; it was important for British as it represented their western most borders of the British-India.[/quote]

    I don’t agree with your contention. Look at Britain. More than 80% of its people live in England. Scotalnd’s population is less than London. Yet the Scottish have complete autonomy in their matters. So does Wales, which is even smaller. Its not the size alone that makes a difference, its the will power that counts. Imam Hussain was fighting alone against the might of Yazeid (read today’s Army), yet through his sheer steel will he changed the course of history. There are many such examples in history. Individuals and small comunities can make a lot of difference. As for your argument that 160 million people have not been able to send the Army back to barracks, I must say that it is only now that people have developed such hatred for the military. Earlier on, thanks to the propaganda, every one used to respect military a lot, including myself. It would take time for its impact to be felt. Suharto ruled for 32 years, and during his reign Army entered every part of life in Indonesia, yet it had to retreat under the pressure from the people.

    China’s Peoples Liberation Army (PLA) and the military in Vietnam had also been involved in business and commercial activities. Yet under pressure those governments had to rescind their policies and military had to be cut to size.

    Vietnam has only very recently cut off the military from its commercial enterprises.

    I don’t see any reason why the same cannot happen in Pakistan.

  54. Toryalai says:
    June 3rd, 2007 8:58 am

    [quote comment="51375"][quote comment="51366"][quote comment="51350"][quote comment="51270"]I haven’t read the book yet and I would like to know if she has touched upon cantonment areas. For example how much land is needed to accommodate Pakistan’s armed forces and where they should make their ‘CHAAH’ONIS’? I’m posing this question because I am from Quetta and people in Balochistan are the most deprived one – in many ways.

    Balochistan is 43% of Pakistan and almost 25% of its population resides in and around Quetta City! Unfortunately 45% of Quetta (area wise) has been taken over by ‘Faujis’- hardly few thousand soldiers) while around two million civilians are forced to live in the remaining 55% of Quetta. What a shame! Not only that but we the natives (we were there b4 the Mughals/British/Partition) are required to have a pass (Passport/visa!) in order to go through or to the other side of the ‘CHAAH’ONI’. We really feel very strongly about this discrimination in our own ancestral land while the immigrants from Punjab, in particular, roam about freely – buying and selling our land which they acquire as part of their retirement!

    Please remember I am not anti-Pakistani/Punjabi but it hurts the way our people are treated by a bunch of thugs from the armed forces! And if we question their ‘misbehaviour’ in any forum then we are considered as ‘traitors’ while those have sold Pakistan and its poor people many times get away with their crimes and they get medals!

    I hope the editors on this forum will run some articles highlighting the role of ‘chaah’onis’ in the crowded cities and the problems they create for indigenous civilians.

    I am just hoping Dr, Saddiqa might have discussed this issue in her book.[/quote]

    The people of Queta should forcibly take away land from the Faujis.[/quote]

    Shahid Sahib, your answer is too simplistic! If 160 million people can not send these ignorant animals back to their barracks, how on earth people from a small but heavily crowded town like Quetta can do that!

    The ‘cantonment’ issue needs a proper debate across Pakistan. Army as an industry (since it’s no longer an institution) should invest in the barren lands in the mountains to make new cantonments; this will also allow the surrounding regions to prosper as a result! Plus Quetta is not a strategic zone for present day Pakistan; it was important for British as it represented their western most borders of the British-India.[/quote]

    I don’t agree with your contention. Look at Britain. More than 80% of its people live in England. Scotalnd’s population is less than London. Yet the Scottish have complete autonomy in their matters. So does Wales, which is even smaller. Its not the size alone that makes a difference, its the will power that counts. Imam Hussain was fighting alone against the might of Yazeid (read today’s Army), yet through his sheer steel will he changed the course of history. There are many such examples in history. Individuals and small comunities can make a lot of difference. As for your argument that 160 million people have not been able to send the Army back to barracks, I must say that it is only now that people have developed such hatred for the military. Earlier on, thanks to the propaganda, every one used to respect military a lot, including myself. It would take time for its impact to be felt. Suharto ruled for 32 years, and during his reign Army entered every part of life in Indonesia, yet it had to retreat under the pressure from the people.

    China’s Peoples Liberation Army (PLA) and the military in Vietnam had also been involved in business and commercial activities. Yet under pressure those governments had to rescind their policies and military had to be cut to size.

    Vietnam has only very recently cut off the military from its commercial enterprises.

    I don’t see any reason why the same cannot happen in Pakistan.[/quote]

    You cannot and should not compare any western country when dealing with issues in Pakistan! The people in the western world are informed people; they have got an independent judiciary and a proper democratic govt., though when it comes to their policies towards foreign nations they are the most undemocratic western nations. But still they defend the interests of their own people/nation. But in countries like Pakistan there is no rule of law, no democracy and no respect for human rights: thieves rule here!

    I don’t know how many of you have ever been to Quetta but believe me it was, only three decades, ago one of the tidiest, well maintained cities of Pakistan and now due to overcrowding it is becoming garbage land while the army is busy investing in constructing a few townships on the cantonment land (45%) which again only thieves can afford to buy bungalows there – the rest of the population: to hell with them, let them rot!

    They (army) have also taken control of Hanna lake and Hanna Urak (tourist resorts) to make more money – at the expense of native (Pashtoon Kakar tribes)!

  55. Timbuktu says:
    June 3rd, 2007 10:21 am

    [quote comment="51179"]I had a chance to go back to Islamabad to buy a plot to settle back in Pakistan. This is amazing that more than ninety percents of the plots for sale in every sector from F-10 to F-11 and from G-11 to D-13 are owned by army personals. They have manipulated the price so much that it is out of reach of an ordinary person living in Islamabad.[/quote]

    In the days of Gen. Ziaul Haq, I arranged some personal and company loans, and went plot hunting. F-10 plots were then becoming available in Islamabad market. I found Retd. Admiral Niazi (ex-chief of the Navy) controlled almost all of these.

    Admiral Niazi eventually stood for a seat from Islamabad, and addressed a gathering of a kutchchi abaadi voters at his house. After he had finished his speech, I asked if we could ask questions. He said yes, then added “before you ask, I want to clarify one point: You may be wondering where have I got the money for all my property and for spending in the election, which I am not likely to win, but am contesting only to become well-known. You see I had a lot of ancestral land, and suddenly that land appreciated in value, and I sold it and bought all this property. Now does that answer the question you have in mind?”

    I said there are supplementary questions, so may I ask those Qs. I was granted permission.

    Then I asked:

    Q1: why is it that when a recruit comes to join the armed forces, he writes that he and his family have no properties, but when the same recruit gets to one of the top slots, suddenly he discovers he has ancestral property, and at the same time, his suddenly discovered ancestral property appreciates so much in value that he can corner a whole sector in Islamabad?

    Q2: Is there corruption in the country? If so, at what level does it exist?

    Q3: If corruption is there, what would you do to curtail it?

    The answers are really illuminating.

    Q1 was ignored, as if I hadn’t asked it at all.

    A2 after some head-scratching was that there is corruption, and it exists at the lower levels.

    A3 was that he would hire some retired army officers like Majors etc. and they would root out the corruption.

  56. Timbuktu says:
    June 3rd, 2007 11:31 am

    I would like to add that the fleecing and the corruption is almost in every field.

    Which pir or Jagirdar pays Income Tax or has paid Wealth Tax (when it was due in the past)?

    Faisal Saleh Hayat built a road to his ancestor’s shrine on government money, and stays is power. All these pirs and jagirdars have been in power from the days of the British, and have not paid anything to the Pakistani Exchequer.

    He is not the only one. There are thousands upon thousands (Maybe hundreds of thousands) of urse Mubarak every year, and the gaddi nasheens gets billions of rupees, but pay no tax.

    Which businessman pays true tax. If he does, doesn’t the taxman hound him?

    Which independent professional reports his income peoperly?

    Which tax-adviser advises according to law, and gives you correct advice, rather than bribing officials to bury your case?

    Who reports his property accurately? It is such a hassle. More so when documentation is required, and the taxman gets after you, because he wants his share.

    Who isn’t beseeched by bakhseesh seekers?

    Which products aren’t adulterated or otherwise tempetred with?

    etc. etc.

  57. hakim hazik says:
    June 3rd, 2007 12:06 pm

    All readers with a liberal outlook should admire the opportunities provided by the Musharraf government for free expression, under the enlightened and forward looking supervision of PEMRA. A recent example was the events of 12th of May where a massive public demonstration of freedom of expression took place, using overhead bridges and freight containers as platforms and automatic weapons as implements to create high art, noted home and abroad for its stunning impact.
    I am dismayed at the unenlightened attitude of Islamabad Club. I thing Ms. Ayesha Siddiqa should launch her next edition from Jamia Hafsa, who are a great repository of our liberal culture and free expression, and able to stand firm in face of adverse circumstances.

  58. Adnan Ahmad says:
    June 3rd, 2007 1:11 pm

    Please read Wusat’s baat se baat on:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/urdu/

    It starts from a time when defence housing schemes were not known yet.

  59. Amina says:
    June 7th, 2007 8:55 am

    Thank you for highlighting these and other important stories like those of the Lal Masjid Talibanism and the way the govt is treating press and judiciary. I think that sites like yours are part of the real revolution happening here. Keeps people informed and also gives them a place to speak up. Well done. Thank you.

  60. Tayab says:
    June 4th, 2007 5:27 am

    Ya, I heard that this book is available for free download any one can please give me the link of that website???

  61. ali says:
    June 4th, 2007 5:35 am

    hi
    I found a interview of the author of the book, please check this out
    http://www.despardes.com/oscartango/080605.html

  62. Aqil Sajjad says:
    June 4th, 2007 12:25 pm

    While I do plan to read the book at some point, for now, I am just curious to know whether it also covers the educational institutions and how Faujis get preferential treatment in admissions as well as their special quota in civilian jobs.

    It is about time that we started asking them whether they are mentally retarded and hence incapable of competing on merit to necessitate these special seats and other policies that favour them over civilians as affirmative action for their inclusion.

  63. June 4th, 2007 4:24 pm

    why do we oust our opponents to win the competition we dont compete with them we throw them out so they never be in competition again! that is the paki ruler’s mindset.

  64. mehroom awam says:
    June 4th, 2007 9:03 pm

    Pakistan (Pvt) Ltd. the owner is Militry Inc. All right reserved for Militry Inc. Banned Pakistan (Pvt) Ltd.

  65. Timbuktu says:
    June 5th, 2007 1:26 am

    Sad, it is sad.

    I did like Pervez Musharraf, although I don not like military interventions, or military rigidity.

    The economy was in a mess due to sanctions over the nuclear tests. Hunger was growing.

    Suicides had taken place. Corruption was rife. The political parties had failed.

    When I first heard him, I saw the reluctance wuth which he had taken the step. Clearly, he wasn’t sure, maybe even afraid of the unconstitutionality of the step he had been told to take, but as he spoke, I felt his genuineness, honesty, integrity, sincerity and competence.

    Things were still tough. Sanctiona and debt/interest repayments had crippled the economy.

    Then 9/11 happened, and Pervez Musharraf decided to side with the US of A.

    Was there a real choice, given the threats?

    So, although there was gross injustice in the invasion /bombing of Afghanistan, I kept quiet.

    There was a dividend. The economy lifted somewhat as sanctions eased. Some debts were rescheduled at lower interest. Some were forgiven. Salaries were raised. There was hope of bringing the loot back home.

    Then things changed again. Corruption was back. Deals were made with the corrupt.

    And the gap between the rich and the poor grew greatly.

    Suicides were back, too.

    At least the General was honest with us. No more after the backing of MQM.

    Then there are the missing. Why is it necessary to kidnap people, hold them without charge, without telling their families, and to torture them?

    Why can’t we ever treat humans as humans, whether there is a civilian or a military man in power?

    So, when the SC took notice, I thought we would now have some rule of law.

    Alas, of late things look bleak. There is too much toughness on those who want humanity and lawfulness to be the guiding principles of the State.

    Silence, and prayers are all I can do. Only Allah (swt) can help us.

  66. Rajput Gaddi says:
    June 5th, 2007 2:55 am

    Simple questions for pakistan army (PVT) LTD.
    Is there any county which is making progress in this world under army rule, how many from 150 countries?, in 21century army has ruled 30years out of 60 in pakistan, and wants more? Is it lust of robbing national wealth.

    How many countries spending 60 to 70 percnet budget on army and 2% on education minmum standard si 4% of gdp accroding t oUN, even nepol, srilanka, bangladesh are spending more than 4% on education.

    Is there any army which is running property business, banks, civilian institutions in world?, 600 retired army personnel is running different dept in pakistan, have u ever seen such kind of happening in any country in history all over the world?.

    Have u ever seen that a chief of army staff is judging the credibility of Chief justice of Supreme court of the country?,
    Due to army rule a chief justice is asking justice, has that happened in any where in the world.

    How many wars has our army won yet? While we r giving her 60 to 70% budget of the country for last 60years. There should be atleast some balance on reward and performance. Kitna looto ge garib awam ko.
    In islami history banglades defeat was the biggest one, even bigger than spain and turkey.
    They have arm n ammunation but still they accepted defeat, it was first time in islami history that u got ammunatain and accept defeated.

    YE FIROON-O-HAAMAAN-O-QAROON SAREY
    SABHI MUFLISOO KEY BANAYE HUE HAIN.

  67. Rajput Gaddi says:
    June 5th, 2007 2:56 am

    Tribute to pak army pvt(ltd)
    —Pay tribute to Pak-Army
    “Aey watan key sajeeley jernaelo,
    Sarey RAQBEY tumhaarey liey hain,
    KOTHIYUN key talabgaar ho tum,
    PLOTOUN key parastaar ho tum,
    O corruption ki zinda misalo,
    yeh sauday tumharey liey hain,
    aey watan key NASHEELAY……….”

  68. Rajput Gaddi says:
    June 5th, 2007 2:57 am

    Tribute to pak army pvt(ltd)

    —Pay tribute to Pak-Army
    “Aey watan key sajeeley jernaelo,
    Sarey RAQBEY tumhaarey liey hain,
    KOTHIYUN key talabgaar ho tum,
    PLOTOUN key parastaar ho tum,
    O corruption ki zinda misalo,
    yeh sauday tumharey liey hain,
    aey watan key NASHEELAY……….”

  69. Toryalai says:
    June 5th, 2007 5:43 am

    [quote comment="51888"]Tribute to pak army pvt(ltd)

    —Pay tribute to Pak-Army
    “Aey watan key sajeeley jernaelo,
    Sarey RAQBEY tumhaarey liey hain,
    KOTHIYUN key talabgaar ho tum,
    PLOTOUN key parastaar ho tum,
    O corruption ki zinda misalo,
    yeh sauday tumharey liey hain,
    aey watan key NASHEELAY……….”[/quote]
    میں Ù†Û’ سوچا آپ Ú©Û’ لءے اÙ

  70. Javed says:
    June 5th, 2007 10:14 am

    The time has come to send the army back to barracks to safegaurd the country. This is the role, they are supposed to play. If they indulge in politics, they must be ready for criticism and accept the failures as a result of their policies. In this modern world, only that society prospers where common norms of democracy prevail. Democracy is not only a form of government but it is a culture which guarantees security, equality and rule of law. I request all powerful generals to pity this poor county and get aside. Let the politicians do their job good or bad but it is sure one day people will succeed in filtering them; they will keep the good ones and throw out the garbage. It is only possible through fair and free elections at specified intervals. Otherwise, our society will be full of mess and this mess will keep increasing as we have witnessed so far.

  71. omar r. quraishi says:
    June 8th, 2007 6:23 am

    http://www.thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=59572

    Military Inc: enter at your own risk

    By Anjum Niaz

    At 10 pm on May 25, Ayesha Siddiqa gets a call from the information minister. It’s only a chat he wants with the author of Military Inc. Maybe tomorrow, he can drop in, he wonders. He doesn’t. On the evening of May 27, Mohammad Ali Durrani calls again, “can we meet at 11 am tomorrow?” ‘Tomorrow’ arrives sans Durrani. “I kept my husband from going to work as I wanted him around when my fellow Bahawalpuria (Durrani is from a neighbouring area) came,” Ayesha says.

    Then comes ‘D-Day’ May 31, the day of the launch. The booked hall cancels her out; hotels shoo her away. Meanwhile the moment of the launch draws. Disinformation goes into overdrive with text messages flying around saying the launch is called off; the book is banned.

    “I wish I had met Durrani. I wanted to know why the government was so hyper, so fearful.” Ayesha says. “Perhaps the time was inopportune; the moment wrong,” she adds as an afterthought. The Supreme Court seminar relayed live flayed the army and the top brass swore never again would they allow a frontal assault. Ayesha became their first anger-victim.

    Peripatetic and barefoot on the mosaic floor of her home in Islamabad, Ayesha, 41, is constantly on her cell. Tea with biscuits arrives. “Can you get me some saltish biscuits,” she asks her servant. “I’m diabetic; I’ve had five heart surgeries.” Well-wishers call to talk about General (retd) Hameed Gul’s reported Rs1.2 billion defamation notice to her. She often breaks into seraiki with the callers. The TV crew of Al-Jazeera has turned up to interview her. She must change out of her casual tee shirt and sweat pants, dab on some makeup, do her hair before facing the camera.

    What was the trigger that caused you to write this book? Did you think it would raise such a stink in the establishment? “No I didn’t,” comes her honest reply. “What’s the hoo- hah about?” she throws her hands in the air. “All the information is already out there in the public domain. I merely connected the dots,” still perambulating and fidgeting with her cell and newspapers. Okay, stop quibbling about the theory part Ayesha reproduced from public and government records, national assembly, even court papers. That’s old hat. Let’s move to her free-spoken analysis of the military business she dubs “Milbus” which is the real problem for the military.

    “Milbus is meant for the gratification of senior officers where huge funds are transferred from public to private individuals without any transparency,” Ayesha says. Almost all countries, developed and developing, have military empires, “but Pakistan is unique, with Indonesia and Turkey coming close.”

    Explaining while Western militaries operate from outside, making money doing business with other countries, “in Pakistan the military penetrates inside to get imbedded in the socio-economic and political arenas. For 60 years, the military classes have cohabitated with ruling elites such as the politicians, bureaucracy, civil society and businessmen wresting an empire for themselves for the senior army officers. Democracy is their anti-thesis.”

    It took her two years to research the answer she wanted: “I could not understand why everybody in the military was biting into the pie and why the corporate and the political elites were letting them do that.”

    She found an “explanation” at last: In Pakistan predation is the norm and the predators are the ruling elites. Put simply, the defence forces along with others have preyed on and plundered the resources of the state. “I must have interviewed some 100 odd johnnies (she won’t name them) from these walks of life from which I have drawn this conclusion.”

    Well, you started the shosha; added fuel to fire; got the crowds all het up, so now for you to look deflated and be on the defensive, even sound apologetic, as you did on Geo with Kamran Khan is most surprising? I tell her.

    “Says who I was on the defensive?” Ayesha hotly refutes. “Yes, you were”, Brigadier (retd) Ishtiaq Ali Khan echoes. He lives nearby. Pulling out a list of good the ‘Military Inc’ has done, he says: “it employs a large number of ex-army personnel as well as civilians; tens of thousands ex-soldiers get welfare benefits in healthcare, education, loans in far-flung areas and supports financially widows and families of over 50,000 shaheeds (martyrs).”

    “You become a fraternity — all you military people (retired and serving) when your interests are threatened,” Ayesha tells the brigadier who is one of the three high-ranking officers who resigned when General Zia overthrew Bhutto and took power in 1977. The man has principles. Judging by an old Suzuki FX he drives, one can only say that ‘Milbus’ must have bypassed the brigadier. Still, his old heart beats in unison with his fellow military men.

    “Brigadier sahib (woe betide, he hasn’t read her book!) I will not talk to a retired or serving officer unless he has read my book. I repeat I have no intention to malign the army. I’m just presenting the facts,” she tells Ishtiaq Ali Khan. Addressing us both, she mildly scolds: “Your views are too simplistic. It’s very sad that you should look at my TV interview with such a narrow vision.”

    Continuing her ‘lesson’ to a ‘pair of school kids’ (me and the brig) she begins all over again: What the book contains was earlier extracted and printed in two Newsline articles last year. “I wanted to test the waters and when I got no reaction from any quarters, I went ahead with the publication.” We’re informed that heavyweights like Dr Manzoor Ahmed, Justice Fakhruddin G Ibrahim and Jamil Yusuf okayed the Military Inc book proposal and nominated Ayesha in 2004 as a Woodrow Wilson Scholar. She went to Washington and wrote the book.

    “Let me make one thing very clear,” she says when I ask why she politicised the launch by inviting opposition party parliamentarians Aitzaz Ahsan and Ahsan Iqbal to speak. “I am an academic; not a politician. I don’t lead rallies.” She invited the two Ahsans because she wanted to “put them on the spot for their parties’ unholy alliance with the army”.

    I don’t accept her argument. I think the author wanted fireworks but hadn’t bargained on an inferno. She reminds me of the brave and heroic fire fighters of New York, dousing her inflammatory book with foamy explanations on why she penned it.

    Her father, Sardar Owaisi, was an MPA belonging to the PPP. He died in 1979, when Ayesha was only 13 years old. “I wanted to enter politics but at age 26, when I went to UK to do my PhD in war studies, I was completely engrossed in academia and could never give up writing.” Her mother, Jamila Hashmi, is the renowned short-story writer. Today, their daughter has shown spunk to stand up to the establishment: the security analyst’s own security is in danger: “My home and world is Pakistan and my heart breaks when I get messages to leave the country.”

    You’re gutsy; people want you as their hero, I tell Ayesha. “I’d rather be a Harry Potter than a CJP 2!” she smiles.

    Epilogue: That evening (June 5) Ayesha abruptly left for London.

    The writer is a freelance journalist with over twenty years of experience in national and international reporting. Email: aniaz@fas.harvard.edu

  72. MUHAMMAD ADEEL says:
    June 8th, 2007 7:05 am

    Well its very sad to say but DR. Ayesha left Pakistan. She has reached London following threats of life and possible legal action agianst her. i just can’t understand that why we can not speak truth in our country? Her book is an eye openor for any Army Fan.. facts are facts which can not be kept hidden as one day or another it reaches people.

  73. MH says:
    June 8th, 2007 12:11 pm

    I went to Saeed Book Bank, Islamabad last night to purchase a copy of the book, didn’t find. I was told that all the copies have been sold out.
    When should we expect the new stock.

  74. HASSAN' says:
    June 8th, 2007 4:37 pm

    Well may be some of you know it or not.

    JUN 7 – Renowned scholar Dr Ayesha Siddiqa secretly reached London Wednesday after she “received a message that a charge sheet is being prepared to put her on trialâ€

  75. Aqil Sajjad says:
    June 8th, 2007 7:04 pm

    Does anyone who this retired general is? I mean the person planning to sue Dr. Sadiqa?

  76. Nazir says:
    June 8th, 2007 8:03 pm

    General Arif being sent to London to debat with Dr Aysha on her book; http://jang.com.pk/jang/jun2007-daily/09-06-2007/topst/main12.gif

    Another stupid idea by Mushi government?

    Btw Oxford Press busy printing third edition of the book.

  77. Aqil Sajjad says:
    June 8th, 2007 10:21 pm

    I have read somewhere that they are also working on an Urdu translation of the book.

  78. omar r. quraishi says:
    June 9th, 2007 6:00 am

    the retired general is hameed gul — hassan that thing you ‘copied’ from despardes is actually from the news — at least cite the correct source

  79. Asad says:
    June 9th, 2007 6:16 am

    Everyone, I want to read this book. I can not find it in Saudi Arabia (Not surprising, anyway). Does anyone has a soft copy, and he can upload it somewhere. Please.

  80. HASSAN' says:
    June 9th, 2007 6:18 am

    @ omar r. quraishi

    I copied it from Despardes not from The News so why do I refer to it.

  81. June 9th, 2007 8:37 am

    i admire doctor ayesha siddiqa for writting the book military inc , inside pakistans military economy ,. i have not yet read the book , but i know that its about pakistans military economy . she has exposed pakistans military economy .
    what right does the army and the government have to stop her book from being launched ?,. its is her constitutional right to write any thing she wants to .
    i completely agree with atzaz ahsan when he says that it is time to stand up against the military dominance, the army has nothing to do with polictics, they have no right to rule pakistan . pakistan has had enough of military rule , enough is enough . we want democarcy.

  82. Muhammad Suleman Sheikh says:
    June 11th, 2007 6:51 am

    Army must go back and take care of borders to safeguard the country which is due to U-Turn on Afghan Policy by Mr.Musharaf has not only destroyed the image of Pakistan in all over the world but also left this country into dangers from all cornors. Pakistan Army is the only Army of a country who has not only attacked on different parts of its own country but also in some cases Missile technology has been used. We must buck-up Dr. Ayesha’s effort to write a book showing some inners of Pak Army’s Generals corruptions. May be we can differ from some of its paragraphs but we have to salute the courage shown by Dr. Ayesha.

    Musharaf should go back at home and take the rest in the remaining period of his life — otherwise we are foreseeing a bloodshed in this country not only Army versus Judiciary but also Army versues Pakistani Nation.

    Only possibility is to save this country from any disaster is to conduct free and fair election under the auspices of Supreme Court of Pakistan.

  83. MUHAMMAD ADEEL says:
    June 11th, 2007 7:46 am

    The book by Dr. Aisha has started to show at least some effect on Army Economy. The latest news is that Army Owned bank ‘Askari Commercial Bank’ is changing its name….

  84. sargodhian says:
    June 11th, 2007 9:21 am

    it is a great contribution for pakistan.I do want to know more about the General’s corruption.I wanna tell you that this is the book i was awaiting for long.Dr.Ayesha is a great lady in the sense of politics for me.I salute Dr.Ayesha

  85. Nazir says:
    June 11th, 2007 11:02 am

    [quote]13 Jun 07 – Book Launch & Talk – Dr Ayesha Siddiqa

    On Wednesday 13 June 2007 Dr Ayesha Siddiqa, Military Analyst, Pakistan, will launch her new book Military Inc.: Inside Pakistan’s Military Economy and talk about the subject. The event will be from 1-2pm.

    Dr Ayesha Siddiqa is a military analyst based in Islamabad with a doctorate in War Studies from King’s College, London. She contributes regularly to Jane’s Defence Weekly. She was the ‘Pakistan scholar’ at the Woodrow Wilson Centre for International Scholars at Washington, DC for 2004-05. Her first book was Pakistan’s Arms Procurement and Military Buildup, 1979-99 (2001).

    The UK release of her latest book, Military Inc.: Inside Pakistan’s Military Economy, will take place at the same time. Copies will be available to buy at the event.

    This meeting will take place on the Fourth Floor at Arundel House, 13-15 Arundel Street, Temple Place, London WC2R 3DX.

    If you would like to attend, please RSVP Kathleen James on E-mail:james@iiss.org or Tel: 020 7395 9109[/quote]

    http://www.iiss.org/events-calendar/this-month/book-launch–talk-ayesha-siddiqa

  86. mazhar says:
    June 11th, 2007 3:14 pm

    In events like this, publishing of a very important book on a very important topic we get carried away blaming everything on one section of the society. We tend to behave with a mob mentality, completely ignoring the other equally responsible players i.e. Landlords, sardars, khan’s, chowdries, vaderas and rest of the blood suckers. And not forgetting people like sheikh Rashid ,altaf bhai, chowdries and many more..

    Important thing to note is that, may be time has come when people are picking up the courage to ask question’s to the army and other blood suckers i.e corrupt political leaders who have for quite some time taken poor people of Pakistan for a ride.

    I would like to believe that Pakistan is going through a very important period of its existence. Events in connection with the removal of chief justice, MQM’s behaviour on the 12th of May in Karachi, and publishing of this book are( may be) some indicators.

    In the end I would like to request everybody that, we should not forget that we belong to the same country. And we are all suffering from these people’s

    Take care , Khudahafiz

    M masud

  87. Junaid Lodhi says:
    June 12th, 2007 4:12 am

    A great effort at the right time. The army has never been questioned in Pakistan and this was about time.
    Over generations, we were brainwashed in schools that Pakistan only produced heros from the military. The people who received Nishan-e-Haider are the only heros of Pakistan worth mentioning. Our army has conquered Pakistan over and over again and that is their only accomplishment.
    Kargil was a fiasco and not even a single General was penalized for that. The army Generals are corrupt, land grabbers, drug barons and arms trafficers and they easily push the blame of all the debacles on civilians like Dr. Qadeer and the sort.
    The army destablizes the open market economy by entering into fertilizers, banking, foods, etc and uses the subsidy of the government to compete in the open market. They cannot have this unfair advantage.
    The natural progression now will be to question the legality of the political system, register cases against Musharraf and other generals for High Treason and HANG them for breaking the constitution.

  88. June 18th, 2007 11:43 am

    Here’s a scanned version of the book. Please buy a copy to protect the intellectual property rights of the author who put in a lot of work into it: http://chand.lums.edu.pk/~atifn/military-inc.pdf

  89. June 19th, 2007 5:50 am

    HI,

    A good effort against Army but will it help in any way to Pakistan’s economy. i dont think so.

  90. Basit says:
    June 21st, 2007 12:39 am
  91. Javed Khan says:
    June 21st, 2007 1:56 am

    Pakistan Army is the biggest mafia of the world, they do not want peace with India or peace in Afghanistan. Peace with India will mean that we do not have any enemy therefore we do not need these crooks to defend us. China does need another 160 millions people. Peace in Afghanistan will mean less military aid from USA that will mean less money to steal, less green cards for relatives.
    Let us throw the crooks out and their supporters too

  92. Vasiq Eqbal says:
    June 22nd, 2007 6:26 pm

    Ayesha Siddiqa, the authour of the book Military Inc. Apart from the book and its controversial text and topic, i think the author is Man more than Men. Writing a book against army in a state wihich is already a military state having dictorial governments since right after its birth. What was inside the book and whatever the facts and figures are, noticeable thing is the courage of the author. Hats off to her.

  93. Nomi says:
    June 25th, 2007 4:51 am

    Sound interesting…..i like to read this book…is this available in the markets????

  94. MQ says:
    July 2nd, 2007 8:33 pm

    “Army accused of grabbing 53 acres of forest land in Murree”

    This is the headline of a news story in The News today. The story is worth reading. Here is the link:
    http://www.thenews.com.pk/top_story_detail.asp?Id=8804

  95. Kruman says:
    July 8th, 2007 10:33 pm

    Dr Ayesha says it is time for Mush to bid farewell:
    http://dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=200779\story_9-7-2007_pg3_2

  96. Ashiq Ali says:
    July 9th, 2007 7:14 pm

    I have not gone through this book as it is not easily available. Is there any one who can put it up, on internet: its main theme, central idea or its few chapters showing what the burning issues it carries.
    Some one has put the book “In the Line of Fire”, belonging the private & professional life of its author ‘Mr. President of Pakistan, General Pervez Musharraf.
    If it is done it will be highly admired.
    Seeking for a prompt & favourable courageous action,
    Ashiq!

  97. July 9th, 2007 7:48 pm

    I have not read this book as yet, as it is banned by the govt. and it is not available on open market. More over it is too costly to purchase.
    Kindly release it on internet as free of cost, so that the common peaple be aware of what is gone by or with the Army.

  98. jabbar says:
    July 10th, 2007 1:02 am

    Not true. It is actualy availabel in bookstores. Actualy is in second printing and is selling very well. Buy and read.

  99. SMH says:
    July 11th, 2007 3:39 pm

    I finally finished reading the book. The argument as every Pakistan knows is exactly right. I must say there was nothing in there, apart from that this was now in a book, that was a surprise. I was hoping for real research and real analysis. It was more a set of stories we all know. I wish she had done the analysis deeper, better writing and better research because lack of it will be a criticism even though her argument is very right.

  100. waqar says:
    July 20th, 2007 6:02 am

    I really do,nt know what purpose/good this book will achieve.What I gather from the reviews/comments on the book is as follows:
    1.The auther wants to dramatize/exagerates various issues concerning Army in various businesses to exploite the pervailing environment in Pakistan to have cheap poularity and make money.
    2.What is wrong if Army is running commercial ventures? It is positive activity as besides others it creats jobs.
    3.For GOD,s sake you writers give this nation motivation confidance and support to face crises and move forward to make our beloved country prosperous.
    4.Do,nt waste your talent and energies to damage your own nation and Armd Forces.

  101. Salman Akram says:
    July 27th, 2007 11:55 pm

    In my opinon the some parts of this book should be availabled on internet so that common people may allure to study this book in order to understand the real meanings of Author efforts.

  102. Ahmad Shoaib says:
    July 31st, 2007 2:35 am

    Well its very sad that we, the people of Pakistan have the army which is the most crupt in the world and robing its own people and country. May Allah give them hadayat and show them the right path.

  103. DR A N SAJID says:
    September 9th, 2007 8:17 am

    VERY INTRESTING BUT LET US LOOKINTO AS A BUSINESS MODEL IN THE CNTEXT OF LOGISTIC NETWORK ( MOST NEEDED )

  104. November 14th, 2007 6:48 pm

    Tonight the world-renowned and respected former cricketer, and the leader of a licensed political party, was arrested in a violent confrontation on the campus of Lahore University. Imran Khan was taken, incommunicado, to be flung into one of the dungeons of the fascist dictator now recognised and accepted by all the world

  105. omer says:
    November 29th, 2007 1:24 pm

    I think she is living in fools paradise. I found in the writer not loyal to pakistan as well as the sacred institutions of the country. In my opinion what ever the comments she passed over army are baseless and to instigate civilians against army. She is being paid by the Indian agencies as well as British secret services MI6. Readers are suggested not to go by the wrong ideas of the writer, rather you should understand that such kind of traitors are being paid by the foreign countries to create disturbance in the country. If you want to find out the facts , one should see the history of writer activities, who has deep roots in India.

  106. Ismail says:
    December 4th, 2007 2:52 am

    Would someone be honest and say, that this book is written with motives questionable. The integrity of the writer must first be thoroughly investigated. In my very considered view, she is serving the interest of the “powers”, who wants to discredit our Military in the eyes of the Pakistani nation. Why, the writer is afraid to investigate and write about the loot and plunder of “Politicians Inc.,” I am sure, she cannot dare to do this. Be Pakistani to the core of the heart and not act against. I would expect, the author to come up clean to my comments. I am a very proud Pakistani, who has a stake in the solidarity and strength of Pakistan, and nothing else.

  107. A.A.Bukhari says:
    December 22nd, 2007 1:23 am

    I have tried to purchase the book of Aysha Siddiqa from market but it is sorry to say that this book is not availabe in our city , Rahimyarkha. If you could please help me to solve this matter to send this book by post or courier service.

    A.A.Bukhari
    anisbukhari@hotmail.com

  108. M IMRAN says:
    December 31st, 2007 10:55 am

    Mrs Ayesha took a bold step against the miltry in Pakistan.It should be taken many years ago that we can stop army to become almighty in Pakistan.Infact at the last I can just slout to Mrs.Aysha that she is the most favourit personality of mine now.

  109. M IMRAN RAFIQ says:
    December 31st, 2007 11:05 am

    At last there is a person made endeavour for Pakistan.Pakistan’s army just tourching the civilians by louting all the resources of the country and Mrs.Aysha took a step to show the assets occupied by the miltary.I proud to be a Pakistani that there are people in my country like Mrs.Aysha who are the fighter of revolution.
    “Geo mary das ki bati Geo”Ameen.

  110. TAHSEEN, MEDIA CLIPPING says:
    February 29th, 2008 1:44 pm

    THIS IS FOR ACTION RESEARCH FORUM

    Military Inc.: Inside Pakistan

  111. Ali says:
    March 11th, 2008 9:44 pm
  112. Bell says:
    March 19th, 2008 8:38 pm

    I think this book draws a clear picture of Pakistani Military. One of the most corrupted institute of Pakistan. I have read some comments and felt that people are questioning the patriotism of the author. But I would say Ayesha has done an amazing job bringing everything together in one script.
    Pakistan is not a Nation with the military, Its a military with a nation and recent crisis has proved that. Two third budget of Pakistan goes to its military to buy lands, Pay for Luxuries and use of staff cars for families. Pakistan was never declared a Failed state but for the first time, it is declared a failed state and thanks to all the Senior Generals.

  113. Asad Abbasi says:
    April 5th, 2008 4:09 am

    I do agree with Mr. Omer and Mr. Ismail.
    the writer has either written the book on the directives of the “POWERS” and is not loyal to the country, that why she had fled from Pakistan.
    Can you please clearfy the criterion for being Loyal and patriotto the country and nation?
    Sorry to say for some people it is to be loyal to Rulers and the molitary institution. where are those loyal people who were with the General?
    One should not attch LOYALITY of a person with the loyality of Generals and Ministers. She has atleast shown the mirror to Generals. as for as politicians are concerned, will you peolple save har from the wrath of Politicians?
    I would say NO.

  114. SAAD says:
    July 15th, 2008 8:16 am

    I am an engineering student and I totally agree with the author regarding her views about the military establishment in Pakistan. I would like to add a little fact for the readers, it is on record that whenever Pakistan Army came to power, we lost some of our geographical territory, be it via war or talks with the neighbours, we did loose what was suppose to be ESSENTIALLY PAKISTANI. Ayub’s era: Pakistan gave some land to China to settle its territorial dispute, Yahya: East Pakistan, Zia: Siachen Glacier, Musharraf: Kargil and more donations are underway……….

    GOD BLESS PAKISTAN

  115. Ali says:
    July 19th, 2008 6:57 am

    I do not agree with Mr. Omer. The book is really good and brings many facts on surface. Unfortunately, we still can’t do anything about this coz the country is totally out of peoples’ hands now. Military has fully corrupted and sold the country’s sovereignty. So sad, but it is what it is.

  116. saqib says:
    February 20th, 2009 5:26 pm

    can i get the email of pakistani analyst aisha siddiqa.

  117. Raza says:
    February 27th, 2009 3:54 am

    I wounder after writing so much about Army you survived. Pakistan Army has the reputation of repressing openions and harming individuals who speak about their wrongdoing.

    Great job Dr. Sahiba.

  118. Raza says:
    February 27th, 2009 3:58 am

    I wonder hou you survived after writing so much. Pak Army has the reputation of supressing individuals who try to expose their wrong doings.

    Well done and good job Dr. Sahiba.

  119. Riaz Haq says:
    June 29th, 2009 12:34 am

    It is now recognized that without Chinese military’s crucial role, it would have been very difficult for the Chinese to build the modern industrial base and attract massive foreign direct investments to become the factory of the world. It is also clear that, as a powerful and stable institution, Pakistani military can and should take inspiration from the PLA to play a much bigger role in Pakistan’s economic development and rapid industrialization to help increase the nation’s prosperity and lift millions out of poverty, as China’s PLA has done.

    Pakistan’s military should take a leaf from the Chinese PLA playbook. It should do what is necessary to strengthen the nation’s industry, economy and national security, regardless of any critics, including Ayesha Siddiqa Agha and her myriad fans. This is the best way forward to a well-educated, industrialized, prosperous and democratic Pakistan in the future.

    http://www.riazhaq.com/2009/06/militarys-role-in-pakistans-industrial.html

  120. Sohrab A Khan says:
    January 2nd, 2011 3:10 pm

    Hi:

    Is this book ( Military Inc). available on net? If not, the author should have done this by now.
    Sohrab A Khan
    Toronto

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