March 02, 2012

Row over national security: Dim prospects for political harmony

by G. Parthasarathy

After turmoil across the country and in both Houses of Parliament over corruption, throughout 2011, one was hoping that the country and its leaders would be able to get back to addressing the serious internal and external problems we now confront and even reach consensus on key legislative issues of national governance. While inflation affecting the common man was showing some welcome signs of decline towards the end of 2011, it still remains at unacceptably high and indeed backbreaking levels for the majority of our citizens. There is also considerable uncertainty and confusion on how the government will deal with the fallout of the Supreme Court judgement cancelling 122 telecom licences approved by Mr A. Raja.

Political controversy, however, has suddenly arisen from an issue of national security, on which there should normally have been a wide consensus, if not total unity. The 26/11 terrorist attack exposed glaring shortcomings in our intelligence and internal security structures. Over the past few years, the Home Minister, Mr P. Chidambaram, has sought to address these shortcomings that existed throughout the tenure of his impeccably attired predecessor. Seeking to coordinate and amalgamate the information available to all intelligence agencies, the Home Ministry came up with the idea of a National Counter-Terrorism Centre (NCTC) which would act as a nodal point for coordinating, analysing and disseminating relevant information to other Central Agencies and to designated authorities in state governments. The decision to establish the NCTC was formally conveyed to state governments on February 1, 2012.

The Union government has set up the NCTC under the Provisions of Section 2 (C) of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act of 1967. The work of the NCTC will be supervised directly by the Director of the Intelligence Bureau (DIB). The NCTC will have, under the Provisions of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act, the powers for investigation, interrogation, arrest, detention and prosecution of those it charges with terrorism-related offences. It is also empowered to set up inter-state teams where terrorist cells are located across state boundaries. When state governments studied the powers assigned to the NCTC, over a dozen Chief Ministers went ballistic claiming that the Home Ministry's notification on the NCTC violated the basic federal structure of the Constitution and undermined their constitutional authority on the maintenance of law and order. Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa alone drew pointed attention to the fact that an intelligence organization being vested with such sweeping powers was undesirable in any democratic polity.

India's foremost expert on global terrorism B. Raman has pointedly noted that the concept of having a single agency for intelligence, investigation, arrest and prosecution was the brainchild of Soviet dictator Josef Stalin. His brainchild, the KGB, was responsible for the arrest, detention, disappearance and execution of thousands of innocent Russians during his rule. Moreover, as a matter of principle, it is unwise to concentrate wide-ranging powers in the hands of a single intelligence agency, whose actions are not subject to rigorous parliamentary scrutiny. This is not to suggest that the IB in India has any propensity for indulging in extra-constitutional acts. The IB is an organisation which is respected by its peers internationally for its professional competence. Given the way it functions, much of what it achieves does not receive public attention or acclaim. Nevertheless, institutional checks and balances remain crucial for democratic governance.

Following the terrorist strikes of 9/11, the Americans introduced a number of changes to make inter-agency cooperation and coordination more effective. One of the measures undertaken was the establishment of a National Counter-Terrorism Centre to ensure better coordination between intelligence and investigative agencies. But the American NCTC has no powers to investigate crimes, or arrest and prosecute terrorists. This power remains with the FBI, which like the CBI is an investigative agency, though it enjoys far wider powers and has a larger role than the CBI. Similarly, the UK Counter-Terrorism Command was created in 2006 by merging the anti-terrorism branch and the special branch of the Metropolitan Police. This command has the powers for investigation, search and arrest. The MI 5, which is the British equivalent of the IB, does not have powers of arrest or prosecution. New Delhi should bear this in mind while refashioning the role of the NCTC.

This year has also not started well in the conduct of foreign policy. Uncertainty and faulty assessments of developments in the Maldives led us to initially label what in reality was a coup as a constitutional transfer of power. Not surprisingly, busybodies like the British jumped into the fray offering advice to the Maldivians on what they should do. India has to ensure that there is no Islamist takeover of the Maldives. Surely, all this should have been anticipated and an Indian Navy destroyer positioned alongside Male to give substance to the messages being conveyed by our diplomats. But all this pales in comparison with the looming crisis in our relations with Bangladesh. Two major agreements, on the demarcation of the land boundary and the sharing of the waters of the Teesta river remain unimplemented because of opposition within India. It is obvious that whatever consultations the government may have held with West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee were not considered adequate unlike those held by Defence Minister Jagjivan Ram on the Farakka issue with then Chief Minister Siddhartha Shankar Ray in April 1977, or the subsequent negotiations for the final Farakka Accord in 1997, in which Mr Jyoti Basu was actively involved.

It will be a major foreign policy disaster if New Delhi does not get West Bengal Chief Minister and the National Opposition leadership on board in tackling both the river waters and boundary demarcation issues. We will be letting down a friendly Bangladesh Prime Minister who had placed her faith in us. It would pave the way for a return of rampant anti-Indian rhetoric and Islamist tendencies in the polity of Bangladesh. Foreign leaders will be loath to believe the assurances we give, or promises we make. Adding to this dismal external picture is the concern voiced by our astute Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee stating: "As Finance Minister, when I think of the enormity of subsidies to be provided, I lose sleep." He was echoing the statement of Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar that the proposed Food Security Bill was not implementable. Populism and fiscal profligacy have led to disaster in European countries like Greece, Italy and Spain. Must we follow the same route?

March 01, 2012

When insanity rules the world

PREM SHANKAR JHA Hindu @ March 2012

India should resist the West's brazen efforts to use championship of democracy as a cover for regime change.

In June 1914, Serbian ultra-nationalists calling themselves the Black Hand managed to kill Archduke Ferdinand, the heir apparent to the throne of the Austro-Hungarian empire, in Sarajevo and ignited the First World War. None of the Great Powers wanted that war. None expected it to last more than four weeks. It lasted four years and took 19.5 million lives. Today, three apparently coordinated attacks on Israeli diplomats in Georgia, India and Thailand, for which Tel Aviv is strenuously blaming Iran, could become the spark for a similar conflagration in the Middle East.
The comparison is not as fanciful as it sounds, for the configuration of forces in the international state system is beginning to resemble what existed in the decade before the First World War. The most striking similarities are the decline in the economic power of the hegemonic nation — Britain then, the United States today; challenges from new aspirants to hegemony, Germany then (with the U.S. lurking in the wings), China and Salafi Islam today; attempts to shore up hegemony through alliances with like-minded nations — Britain, France and Russia then — the U.S., the European Union and Israel today; the emergence of a bunker mentality that hardens stances and progressively closes the avenues for peace through accommodation; and a growing temptation to use military power to pre-empt potential challenges even before they arise.

Minor player

In 1914 it was Austria, a minor player in the great power game, that lit the fuse that blew up Europe. It could have chosen to accept Serbia's frantic efforts to make amends after the assassination. But it chose to invade Serbia in order to teach its own fractious nationalities a lesson. Serbia was allied to Russia, Russia to France and France to Britain. Austria, on the other hand, was allied to the principal challenger for hegemony in Europe, Germany. None of the great powers wanted war, but none felt sufficiently secure or had the confidence to back off from its commitments. The result was a war that wiped out the flower of a generation in Europe.

Today, it is once more the smallest and least secure member of the western alliance, Israel, that is threatening to light the fuse in the Middle East. Unable, or perhaps unwilling, to make peace with the Palestinians on terms that they can accept, it now perceives the mere existence of states in its neighbourhood that are not reconciled to its existence as a threat to its existence. Iran heads the list.

Israel has given a virtual ultimatum to its partners that if they cannot stop Iran from setting up uranium enrichment plants, it will take unilateral military action to stop it from doing so. Instead of dissuading Tel Aviv in unequivocal terms, Barack Obama has dithered between privately reining it in, and publicly supporting it by sending two aircraft carrier groups into the Arabian Sea and threatening to use “other means” if Iran does not stop its nuclear enrichment programme.

Dangerous moment

Israel's brinkmanship has come at a dangerous moment because, for reasons both domestic and international, Europe, the U.S., Russia, China (the new kid on the block), and Iran, are suffering from a crisis of confidence that makes them wary of appearing weak in the eyes of the international community and their own people. Tired of unending economic woes at home and fighting a losing battle against the Taliban in Afghanistan, the U.S. and the EU have seized upon the so-called Arab Spring in a desperate bid to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat. To do so, they are posing as champions of democracy and human rights, who have come to the aid of the long suppressed Arab “people” in their fight for democracy against corrupt, brutal and autocratic rulers. In their eagerness to don the mantle of saviours they have not merely abandoned the secular, albeit autocratic, regimes that had kept the peace in the Middle East for four decades, but trampled upon the last remnants of the doctrine of national sovereignty upon which the international order, indeed international law itself, has been based for the last 350 years.

Thus in January last year, Mr. Obama virtually forced Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak to resign; in February, the U.S. and the EU joined hands to destroy the Qadhafi regime in Libya; less than two months later, they embarked upon a campaign to oust the Baath regime of Basher-al-Assad in Syria.

Unfortunately, the Arab Spring hasn't turned out quite the way the West had hoped, for in every country, the secular democratic elements have been swamped by an Islamist upsurge. Faced with a possibility that these governments could turn out to be far more anti-West and anti-Israel than their predecessors, the West has turned to the orthodox Wahabi establishment of Saudi Arabia and the Sunni sheikhs of the UAE to keep the Muslim brotherhood and more extreme Salafi factions in check. But these regimes too have been feeling the cold winds of the Arab Spring and have hastened to find ways of diverting them elsewhere. They have done so by reviving a far older conflict — between Sunni and Shia Islam, between Arabs and Persians.

Syria, the convergence point

Syria has become the convergence point of both this conflict and the U.S.' and the EU's struggle to protect Israel at any cost. This is because it is an anomaly. It is an authoritarian country ruled by a minority in which the religious majority has not shown any signs of restiveness for more than 40 years. It is a deeply religious but secular country in which men and women mingle freely in the workplace, in markets, and in restaurants; where movies are not banned and drinking liquor is not haraam. It is western enough to have a national symphony orchestra and a western music conservatoire patronised by the President of the country, but is also an unabashed champion of Arab nationalism and the rights of the Palestinians, willing to cooperate with Iran and the Hezbollah to further their cause.

In Israeli and American eyes, it is precisely Syria's (and Libya's) capacity for independent action, and the remote possibility that it might become a conduit for Iranian fidayeen to penetrate and attack Israel, which turns it into a threat. That is why the Assad regime must now be destroyed, much as Qadhafi was four months ago.
India has been asked to join the high table at which the U.S., the EU and Israel already sit and has so far been a none-too-unwilling guest. It has either abstained, or voted for, every resolution tabled in the U.N. by the hegemonic powers in favour of militarily enforced regime change in the Middle East. It is again faced with a non-binding resolution in the Security Council, being brought by Saudi-and UAE-dominated Arab League, demanding that Mr. Assad “move aside.” And Israel is already urging India to support a resolution in the Security Council condemning Iran for the bomb attack on its diplomat in Delhi, before its agencies have completed their investigations.

New Delhi can be forgiven if it is tempted to stay on at the high table. But it has a duty, to not only its own people but the rest of the world, to get off it and become an independent voice of sanity and moderation. It must stoutly oppose the West's brazen effort to turn the championship of democracy and human rights into a cover for regime change. This is the most complete violation of Article 2 of the U.N. Charter that is possible to imagine. The U.S., and now the EU have decided to ignore their commitments as signatories of the U.N. Charter and have twisted the U.N. into an unrecognisable parody of itself. But for scores of small countries, its Charter remains the only refuge from international anarchy and a headlong plunge into Hobbes' State of Nature. India must speak up for them. As the most open and democratic and the least threatening large country in the world, it has far better credentials to do so than Russia and China. It must not leave this task to them alone.

Balance smashed

For decades, peace in the Middle East had depended on a balance between secular nations that subscribed to the ideals of social freedom and gender equality, and traditionalist emirates and monarchies, created or sustained by the western powers to safeguard their interests in Arab oil. Today, the West has all but smashed that balance. Only fools can persuade themselves that handing over control of the Arab world to the Salafis who planned, participated in, and certainly approved of the destruction of the World Trade Centre, will make terrorism go away. But only those who are fools twice over can believe that allowing Israel to trigger a ruinous war with Iran will make the world “safer for humanity.” What it will do is to unleash the fury of Shia terrorism as well on the West. One shudders to think of where that road could lead.



The need for balancing our strategic need for close relations with the US, Australia, Japan, South Korea and Vietnam in order to be able to cope with present and future security challenges from China with the tactical need for avoiding any action that could sound the alarm bells in policy-making circles in the Chinese Government and Communist Party has been a defining characteristic of our foreign and strategic policy and should continue to be so.

2. Both these needs are clearly understood in policy-making circles in New Delhi and in our intelligence community. We are not yet in a position to change the gear of our policy from a defensively cautious to a confidently activist mode. Our projects for infrastructure development in the areas bordering China are still in the process of implementation. Our plans for the modernisation of our armed forces lack the required urgency and have been hampered in implementation by the widespread atmosphere of suspicion in respect of defence procurement. This has been created by the public campaign against corruption and the activism---how wise, how unwise---of the Comptroller and Auditor-General of India in scrutinising all commercial deals including those impacting national security with the yardstick of self-righteousness not tempered with the need to avoid creating bureaucratic and political diffidence in taking decisions in national security matters. Our intelligence community is still in the process of re-orienting its focus from Pakistan to China.Our intelligence priorities and capabilities in the light of the security challenges from the Sino-Pak region are yet to be clearly defined.

3. Presently, our assessments on China are almost exclusively based on our perceptions of China’s military and economic strengths and its cyber capabilities. China is undoubtedly an emerging power which is far ahead of us from the point of view of various parameters having a bearing on comprehensive national security. But it is also a power, which is facing increasing vulnerabilities because of its uncertain and unpredictable internal security situation. It has not been able to seek reconciliation with the increasing anti-Han activism of its Tibetan and Uighur minorities.Even the Hans in different parts of the country have been increasingly challenging the policy-makers on various issues in the town halls and in cyber space. It doesn’t know how to cope with the increasing belligerence of its netizens.There is greater defiance in the air---in real as well as virtual terms.

4.Unless we take into account the vulnerabilities of China in shaping our policy and in sowing the seeds of the architecture of our strategic co-operation with the US, Australia, Japan, South Korea and Vietnam we may end up with a policy which is over-focussed on traditional military aspects and under-focussed on non-traditional aspects of internal frictions and fragilities in China.China’s military and economic strengths should be a matter of core concern. Its increasing vulnerabilities should be a matter of core interest.

5. How to evolve a strategic policy , which will be the outcome of an intelligent blend of our core concerns and core interests in relation to China is a question which needs attention in our governmental and non-governmental circles which have an impact on our policy-making. It is also a question which should increasingly receive greater attention in our discussions with our perceived strategic partners.

6. It is necessary to evolve a comprehensive China policy which would strengthen our strategic manoeuvrability without damaging the basic strengths of our relations with China. It will be unwise to have a hostile and suspicious China on our border and in our periphery. At the same time, it will be equally unwise to avoid new thinking and new policy options for fear of adding to the suspicions and hostility of China.

7. It is in this context that one has to welcome the Indian stance in the talks between our Foreign Minister S.M.Krishna and his Chinese counterpart Yang Jiechi which were held in New Delhi on February 29 and March 1, 2012. India was right in responding positively to the Chinese suggestion for maritime security co-operation in dealing with piracy . I have myself been advocating this for many years, pointing out that while talk of Sino-Indian co-operation against land-based terrorism was meaningless, co-operation against maritime terrorism and piracy has considerable sense and needs to be promoted.

8. One should also welcome the re-affirmation of India’s policy of dissociating itself from the anti-Beijing activities of the Tibetans while avoiding any action against them as repeatedly demanded by China--- a demand which was reportedly reiterated by the Chinese Foreign Minister.

9. While the exercise for new confidence-building measures with the Chinese should continue, the exercise for new opportunity-building measures with our strategic partners---the US, Australia, Japan, South Korea and Vietnam—should also continue to receive equal attention. It will be an exercise demanding considerable delicatessed’esprit and d’action. Our policy-makers are capable of it. (2-3-12)
( The writer is Additional Secretary (retd), Cabinet Secretariat, Govt. of India, New Delhi, and, presently, Director, Institute For Topical Studies, Chennai, and Associate of the Chennai Centre For China Studies. E-mail: Twitter : @SORBONNE75 )

Saudi Arabia's Terror:What Hillary Clinton Knows

by Jeffrey Steinberg
[PDF version of this article]

Dec. 14—Soon after being sworn in as Secretary of State, and just months after the deadly terrorist assault on the Indian city of Mumbai (Nov. 26, 2008), Hillary Clinton established an interagency task force with the Treasury Department to identify and disrupt terrorist funding conduits. The Interagency Illicit Finance Task Force (IFTF) was placed under the control of Richard Holbrooke, the special Envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan, and chaired by Assistant Secretary of Treasury David Cohen, the top aide to Treasury Enforcement chief Stuart Levey. According to a Dec. 30, 2009 secret State Department memo, recently made public by Wikileaks and the Guardian newspaper, "The IFTF's activities are a vital component of the USG's Afghanistan and Pakistan (Af/Pak) strategy dedicated to disrupting illicit finance flows between the Gulf countries and Afghanistan and Pakistan."
The December 2009 document, circulated to U.S. diplomatic posts throughout Southwest and South Asia, was issued in preparation for a visit by Holbrooke and Levey to Saudi Arabia, the U.A.E., Kuwait, Qatar, and Pakistan, to press for further cooperation in the crackdown on terror funding. In the section of the memo dedicated to Saudi Arabia, there was little attempt to conceal the fact that the Saudis were stonewalling:
"While the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) takes seriously the threat of terrorism within Saudi Arabia, it has been an ongoing challenge to persuade Saudi officials to treat terrorist financing emanating from Saudi Arabia as a strategic priority." While acknowledging some limited recent cooperation, as the result of intense U.S. pressure, the document bluntly continued, "Still, donors in Saudi Arabia still constitute the most significant source of funding to Sunni terrorist groups worldwide.
"(S/NF) The USG engages regularly with the Saudi Government on terrorist financing. The establishment in 2008 of a Treasury attaché office presence in Riyadh contributes to robust interaction and information sharing on the issue. Despite this presence, however, more needs to be done since Saudi Arabia remains a critical financial support base for al-Qa'ida, the Taliban, LeT, and other terrorist groups, including Hamas, which probably raise millions of dollars annually from Saudi sources, often during Hajj and Ramadan. In contrast to the increasingly aggressive efforts to disrupt al-Qa'ida's access to funds from Saudi sources, Riyadh has taken only limited action to disrupt fundraising for the UN 1267-listed Taliban and LeT-groups that are also aligned with al-Qa'ida and focused on undermining stability in Afghanistan and Pakistan." (emphasis in original)
The cable was signed by Secretary of State Clinton.
An earlier State Department cable, dated Aug. 10, 2009, documented fundraising operations in Saudi Arabia by the Pakistan-based group Lashkar-e-Tayyiba (LeT), the organization that carried out the deadly Mumbai attack. Prepared in opposition to an LeT front group's petition to be removed from a United Nations sanctions list, the State Department cable demonstrated that U.S. government intelligence agencies had established a detailed map of LeT operations in Saudi Arabia:
"The Community assesses that LT [LeT], a Pakistan-based terrorist group, uses the JUD (Jamaat-ud-Dawah) name as an alias. JUD is a religious, educational and humanitarian organization that the Community assesses provides cover and protection for LT's militant activities in Pakistan. LT and JUD share many senior leaders; LT falls under the authority of JUD leader Hafiz Muhammad Saeed; and JUD supports and facilitates LT's violent activities. LT and JUD stem from the same original organization, Markaz-ud-Dawawal-Irshad (MDI) that was founded around 1986 and for which LT served as its armed, militant wing. MDI was renamed JUD in December 2001. LT was declared a terrorist organization in January 2002, and MDI publicly divested itself of the LT at that time. LT transferred most of its assets and personnel under the newly formed JUD.... In December 2005, an official of Idara Khidmat-e-Khalq forwarded JUD donation receipts to a probably LT front company in Saudi Arabia, where an LT financial official may have been closely associated with the general manager.... To demonstrate results to donors, JUD would finance the cost of building a new school or upgrading facilities at a madrassa, but would inflate the cost to siphon money to LT." (emphasis in original)
A Jan. 11, 2010 State Department cable detailed a Dec. 13, 2009 briefing by Treasury Department Acting Assistant Secretary of the Office of Intelligence and Analysis, Howard Mendelsohn, to senior officials of the Saudi intelligence organization, Mabahith, concerning Taliban fundraising in Saudi Arabia.
"During the course of the multi-hour intelligence exchange session, GRPO and Treasury analysts walked through the previously shared intelligence, which suggested that Taliban-related financial officials have visited Saudi Arabia in order to raise funds.... Mendelsohn stated that senior Taliban officials travel to Saudi Arabia to discuss reconciliation issues, but said they also conduct fundraising activities while in the Kingdom.... Treasury analysts provided information on XXXXXXXXXX three senior Taliban officials who have made multiple fundraising visits to Saudi Arabia, according to U.S. intelligence. (NOTE: Information available to the USG and shared for this exchange included telephone numbers, e-mail addresses, and passport information for crosschecking against Saudi customs databases. END NOTE.) Mabahith was not familiar with the individuals and pledged to follow up on the identifying information provided by GRPO and Treasury. GRPO and Treasury analysts also shared names and phone numbers of multiple Taliban and Haqqani associates known either to reside in or travel to Saudi Arabia.... Mendelsohn also raised USG concerns about Pakistan-based extremist group Jamaat al-Dawa al-Quran wa al-Sunna (JDQ) and its involvement in attacks against coalition forces in Afghanistan. GRPO and Treasury passed names and other identifying information of suspected Saudi Arabia-based JDQ donors and affiliates."
Outright Collusion
A senior U.S. intelligence official, deeply involved in the probe of Saudi government protection of Sunni terrorist groups, used much more blunt language to describe the situation. "The reality is far worse than the picture presented in the diplomatic cables. There is no real Saudi cooperation. Even after the Saudis passed laws against money laundering in the Kingdom, they have done absolutely nothing. The issue is fundamentalism. The Saudis are the main patrons of Sunni fundamentalism, and they only draw the line when organizations like al-Qa'ida target the Saudi royal family. We know the story, but we are dependent on Saudi oil, and on Saudi purchases of U.S. military equipment. They literally have us over a barrel."
Asked about the implications of this Saudi support for Sunni terrorism on the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Towers and the Pentagon, the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, rolled his eyes. "Ask the Bush White House people. I know personally of 15 U.S. intelligence reports on the bin Laden family that were sealed by President Bush shortly after 9/11. Remember that the first planes allowed to fly over U.S. airspace after the 9/11 attacks carried members of the bin Laden family and other top Saudis out of the country."
The source also pointed to a 28-page chapter, prepared for the Joint Congressional Panel on the 9/11 attacks, which was also put under Bush White House lock-and-key, where it remains to this day. That chapter dealt with then-Saudi Ambassador Prince Bandar bin-Sultan's funding of two of the 9/11 hijackers, through Saudi Embassy accounts at Riggs National Bank.
The source continued, "The coverup was unbelievable. The two 9/11 hijackers living in San Diego, the same two that received the payments from Prince Bandar and his wife, ostensibly for medical care, were living in the home of a Saudi man who was an FBI informant. When Senate investigators tried to interview the man, the Bureau blocked any contact. When a Saudi intelligence officer who hosted the two 9/11 hijackers, from the moment they arrived on the West Coast a year before the attacks, was interviewed by the 9/11 Commission investigators in Saudi Arabia, Saudi intelligence minders were in the room. The interrogation went nowhere."
The Saudis' partner in the funding and protecting of Sunni terrorists worldwide are the British, and one key mechanism for that collusion is the longstanding Anglo-Saudi arms-for-oil barter scheme called Al-Yamamah (the dove, in Arabic).[1] Beginning in 1986, Prince Bandar brokered a deal with the British government and the British weapons cartel, BAE Systems, to provide fighter jets, radar, training, and logistical and spare parts support to the Saudi Air Force. Saudi Arabia paid for the military package with crude oil, which BAE promptly sold on the international spot market. In the course of the deal, an estimated $100 billion in excess funds were siphoned into offshore accounts, to finance black operations worldwide, including the sponsorship of the Afghan mujahideen organizations, then fighting the Soviet Red Army occupation of Afghanistan.
According to the recently leaked State Department documents, al-Qa'eda, Taliban, and LeT are all still receiving Saudi funding, just as they were funded during the height of the mujahideen operations through the BAE-Al-Yamamah secret funds. As the Aug. 10, 2009 State Department cable reported on LeT fundraising operations in Saudi Arabia: "Lashkar-e-Tayyiba and Jamaat-ud-Dawa are part of the same organization, originally called Markaz-ud-Dawawal-Irshad (MDI), that was founded by Hafiz Muhammed Saeed and other faculty at the University of Engineering and Technology in Lahore in 1986. MDI was established with funding from donors in the Middle East and set up camps to prepare its personnel to fight the Soviets in Afghanistan. MDI reorganized after the Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan in 1989, creating LT as its paramilitary wing to fight in the Indian-controlled districts of Jammu and Kashmir."
What is clear from the 39 pages of State Department cables, leaked to the media, is that the U.S. knows, chapter and verse, just how deeply the Saudi regime is involved in supporting and protecting Sunni terrorists around the globe, including the 911 hijackers, al-Qa'eda, and the LeT terrorists behind Mumbai.
It is time for the truth to come out, and one appropriate starting point would be the 28-page chapter from the Joint Congressional 9/11 probe. With the release of the State Department cables, it is no longer a secret that the Saudi regime is deeply involved with terrorist networks that are, to this day, targeting Americans, whether in Afghanistan, India, or right here at home. There are no legitimate national security reasons to hide crucial evidence about the events of Sept. 11, 2001.
[1] See Jeffrey Steinberg, "Will BAE Scandal of Century Bring Down Dick Cheney?" EIR, June 29, 2007.

February 29, 2012

The Right Role for Top Teams

Analysis of informal networks offers a potent leadership model for the C-suite: Make top teams the hub of the enterprise, and watch performance improve.

by Rob Cross and Jon Katzenbach
Think of the top teams you’ve known that have had the greatest impact. Did their value come from the meetings they conducted and the decisions they made together? Or did it derive from something else? In most companies, the phrase top team is a misnomer. Senior executives throughout the company may clamor for a seat on the leadership committee because that is where the key strategic decisions are supposedly made. But in actuality, the group rarely conducts its work in unison, as a deliberative body or a source of command. Instead, its power comes from its members’ informal and social networks, their determination to make the most of those connections, and their ability to work well in subgroups formed to address specific issues. The most effective top teams are those that recognize this reality and explicitly set themselves up to function as the senior hub of the enterprise. READ MORE

February 28, 2012

‘Armoured Vehicles 2012’ industry report

This article is a summary of Defence IQ’s ‘Armoured Vehicles 2012’ industry report, which explores how the future of the global armoured vehicle market is likely to evolve over the next decade. The report is based on a survey of 196 senior executives and professionals within the armoured vehicle domain, which includes both commercial and military respondents.
Topics examined include; armoured vehicle design requirements, key emerging global markets, the lessons learned from Iraq and Afghanistan, and the impact of the global economic meltdown as defence budgets (at least in the traditionally big-spending defence nations) continue to wane.
The majority of survey respondents derived from the commercial sector, accounting for 69% of total responses. Military personnel form the remaining 31%, which includes ranking Colonels, Lieutenant Colonels, and Captains. Almost half of survey participants are based in either the UK (28%) or the United States (19%). However, with the armoured vehicle community being so diverse and disparate, answers were sourced from nations all over the globe including Iran, Singapore, Brazil, UAE, Pakistan, Tunisia, South Africa, Brazil, Poland, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, and so the list goes on; in total, responses were gathered from individuals in 36 distinct countries across every continent.
“IEDs, IEDs, IEDs”
What are the critical threats armoured vehicles should be designed to protect against in the future?
In the graph below we can see that both commercial (95%) and military respondents (89%) identified the roadside bomb as the most critical threat “when considering the future battlespace”.
Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) are plainly the key threat vehicles should look to protect against over the next decade, that is apparent from the graph, but the number of responses citing the exact same answer – “IEDs, IEDs, IEDs” – is unequivocal and revealing. Firstly, this illustrates that there is a patent unanimity among vehicle experts that IEDs are the number one most significant threat facing road-transported military personnel. But it also highlights rather well that, such is their prevalence and devastating impact, they present the number two and three most potent danger to armoured vehicles as well: “IEDs, IEDs, IEDs.” All other threats, though clear and present, must be considered ancillary to the biggest killer on the frontlines and backstreets: IEDs.
The impact of IEDs underpins one of the key lessons learned from Iraq and Afghanistan: Armoured vehicles should be fit for purpose and procured based on requirements, not price. The use of the Snatch Land Rover in the early days of the conflict is reported to have cost the lives of numerous UK service personnel, leading to it being infamously known as a “death trap.” The Snatch is a sound, reliable vehicle for the arena it was originally designed for – in Iraq and Afghanistan it was not fit for purpose. Understanding the threat environment and providing adequate equipment to combat it is fundamental; because of Iraq and Afghanistan the public, let alone the military, will not settle for anything less.
The term “when considering the future battlespace” is worth exploring here too. IEDs are currently the number one killer of forces abroad, primarily locked in counterinsurgency operations facing an enemy almost unseen, often indiscriminate, and always dangerous. The overwhelming sentiment here suggests that this type of warfare will linger for at least the next ten years – nodding towards continued operations in the Middle East and potential conflict in North Africa. President Obama and Defense Secretary Leon Panetta recently unveiled the U.S.’s revised global defence strategy, which marks a step-change in focus moving from Europe towards Asia. While eyes may be turning east, it seems the grunt work will continue to take place in the MEA region as any potential conflict in the Far East would not be one of counterinsurgency where IEDs were utilised as the principal form of attack.
Although, perhaps it is worth remembering what Brigadier General Norbert Huber, Head of Force Development Division at the Austrian MoD, told delegates at the recent International Armoured Vehicles 2012 conference:
“We always try to win the last war without giving much consideration about how to win the next war.”
Survivability: Balancing the capability gap
When designing an armoured vehicle, which attributes should be afforded the most significance? What are the key criteria around which everything else should revolve? For armoured vehicle designers there is always a play-off between cost, protection and weight. “If only I knew which was more important,” they say. “Which do I prioritise – cost, weight, or protection?”
The answer is protection.
Whether respondents are in the military or industry, the consensus leads to protection being the dominant design requirement for armoured vehicles over the next ten years. 76% of commercial respondents and 66% of military respondents identified IED and blast as the key requirement, closely followed by ballistic protection (with 57% and 58% respectively).
Cost misses the podium altogether, managing to just about scrape it’s way into fourth place for both sets of respondents. Even with the bleak economic climate as a backdrop, cost is not perceived to be a primary concern. These findings are supported by Colonel Pekka Toveri, Commanding Officer Armoured Brigade PL5, Finnish Army, who revealed that for mission operations the top three priorities were protection, mobility and firepower, in that order.
Perhaps the most surprising finding from the survey is the low response rate for “power/weight ratio.” While it’s apparent that protection is the chief concern, this always works in harmony with the ‘weight’ aspect; taking these two together, we arrive at what is actually the fundamental issue: performance. Performance infers survivability, survivability is an upshot of performance. As a result, weight and protection are directly proportional.
“We will not neglect mobility … in fact survivability is in a way a balance between protection, fire power and mobility,” said Brigadier General Chris Gildenhuys, Chief of the South African Armour Foundation, South African Army, at International Armoured Vehicles South Africa last year.
Mobility, which is predominantly regulated by the power-to-weight ratio, is particularly relevant to the light armoured vehicle variant.
“Protection can be offset by mobility,” said Brigadier General C.P. Mohanty, North Kivu Brigade Commander, MONUSCO Mission to the DRC, United Nations. “It is the mobility with which we can overcome the protection requirements … we need to have light armoured vehicles with high power-to-weight ratios and high mobility, which is the only way I think we can achieve better protection.”
Economic downturn sparks strategic shift
The sluggish economy is an overriding concern for industry and the military alike as the impact of budget cuts begins to put pressure on all links in the supply chain.
When asked what the most significant factor affecting armoured vehicle procurement will be over the next decade, “economic instability” came away with a resounding 79% of the vote. The next closest issue, “required technology not being commercially available,” was 53% adrift, with just 26% identifying it as an important factor. Economic instability is not just an inconvenient issue presenting short-term discomfort, it’s a cancer.
With the U.S. Department of Defence (DoD) required to make cuts in the order of $450 billion over the next ten years, we can see why. But in the recent briefing at the Pentagon where Obama and Panetta delivered their new defence strategy, both were quick to stress that America’s war-fighting strategy had to change regardless of fiscal constraints. The threats of the 21st Century require it. "The size of our defence budgets has to be driven by a strategy, not the other way around,” said Obama. Panetta went on to state: "The savings we've been mandated to achieve must be driven by strategy ... not by numbers alone."
Cost aside then, war-fighting and business strategies must adapt to the changing political environment. Obama said that the U.S. government is now “turning the page” on the post-9/11 world and moving onto a new chapter. If this is the case, let’s hope the contents of the next one read more like an instruction manual. That’s because this is a fundamental challenge that has previously dogged the armoured vehicle industry: Miscommunication between the public and private sector.
Top-down communication breakdown is one the central woes identified by a recent Public Accounts Committee (PAC) report on the UK’s armoured vehicle procurement process, entitled ‘The cost-effective delivery of an armoured vehicle capability.’ “Over the past six years the Department has removed £47.4 billion from its equipment programme up to 2020-21,” the report states. But here’s the key statistic; of that £47.4 billion funding gap, £10.8 billion (23%) has been removed from armour vehicle projects alone.
Armoured vehicle programmes, it seems, have been easy prey. That must change. While the UK government is not cutting current capacity, it is constricting future capability. Armoured vehicles will be procured over the next decade, but they will not be the bespoke, next-generation variant once envisioned. R&D is the real loser in this economic climate; it’s not just the drawbacks and downgrades being felt today, but the stifling of innovation for tomorrow.
But is this the case universally? Military respondents were asked the following question: To what extent will budget cuts impact armoured vehicle procurement over the next 10 years? Colonel István Talián, of the Hungarian Embassy’s Defence Section, rather succinctly replied as follows:
“In Europe critically, in the US heavily, in Asia insignificantly.”
In the West it is known as the ‘Global economic crisis’, but for many prospering nations such as China and India, it is merely the ‘North Atlantic economic crisis’.
Land of hope and glory
Identifying and exploiting new and emerging markets is the critical next step for global armoured vehicle designers, manufacturers and integrators.
With India highlighted by 57% of all respondents as the country with the greatest potential for growth, there’s little confusion about where priorities lie. Looking at the graph, there is a marked, steady trend from low to high. That is until you get to the very top, until you get to India.
In his recent New Year message, Indian Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh, asserted: “Our Army, our Navy and our Air Force require modernisation and upgradation of personnel and systems. Ensuring this will remain my most important task as Prime Minister.”
It’s no secret India will spend a great deal on defence and security over the next decade as it seeks to establish a world class and robust national security infrastructure, but it’s unclear how much of this business will go to international tender. India has designs on a policy of self-sufficiency whenever possible; the armoured vehicle industry would be unwise to pin all its hopes on one country.
Underpinning the sentiment expressed by Taliàn that the state of the European market is critical, the bottom five countries surveyed are all European: Germany (11%), France (10%), Other Europe (7%), Poland (5%) and Sweden (4%). With the U.S. set to remove its troops from European shores and station them in the Asia-Pacific region, it certainly looks like the European defence market is in peril. Add the EU crisis into the balance and you could argue it’s toxic.
Geopolitically, the two most interesting countries in the top ten here are Australia and Turkey. Australia will be of vital strategic importance to the U.S. as China continues to impress its dominance not just in the East, but as it begins its own Manifest Destiny and encroaches on the West too. Tensions between Australia and China are already strained because of America’s heightened regional influence; it remains to be seen how this dynamic will play out and what the consequences could be for the armoured vehicle industry. In December the Australian government took what it described as “the next step” in its $7.5 billion Project Overlander programme that will provide the Australian Defence Force with around 7,500 new vehicles over the next decade. Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles Australia and Thales Australia were down-selected to supply the variants. Turkey is also a geopolitical cornerstone, being quite literally the gateway between East and West, and central to any Middle East strategies in the future. This aside, it also has the world’s fourth largest army and a defence manufacturing base which is on the uptick.
29% of respondents indicated that China will be an important growth market over the next decade. While its ambitions and wealth are undoubtedly accelerating, the question remains how to penetrate this market and take advantage of the country’s growing economy and military might. China is arguably a bigger market than India and before conducting this survey we may have expected the results for India and China to have been the other way around. However, respondents have clearly shown that while China may spend more money on defence over the next ten years, India is a far more accessible market and the one where industry can gain the most traction in.
The conclusion that it’s ‘all eyes to the East’ may not be a surprising one. The absolute conviction and commitment to India as the Promised Land perhaps should be.

Rise of the iSoldier: smart communication in battle

Richard de Silva, Defence IQ
February 2012

Last year, Defence IQ reported on the use of Apple iPads within the British School of Artillery as a way to enhance training. In this instance, a bespoke app was created to familiarise soldiers with terminology and procedures in a more hands-on fashion, designed to speed up their grasp of operations before deploying to Afghanistan.

In recent months, the US Army has also been making leaps and bounds into the incorporation of smart technology into the wider battlefield network, under what has been called “an accelerated approval process.”

Speaking ahead of his address at the 2012 Tactical Communications event in London this April, Michael McCarthy, director of operations for the Army’s Brigade Modernization Command Mission Command Complex (MCC), said that the plan was to give troops the right phones for the right reasons.The US Army is just one of the armed forces investing heavily into the race to equip troops with smart phones. “It’s not just to give them another shiny thing to hang on their equipment carriers,” McCarthy explained.

Lieutenant General Michael Vane, director of the US Army Training and Doctrine Command’s (TRADOC) Capabilities Integration Center, announced that analysis is underway for all soldiers in theatre to eventually be provided a smart phone, saying “we can figure out the smart cost benefit way of doing this, it probably makes sense in the long run”.

A few of these are already available, with 40 touch screen phones having been provided to frontline troops last year, but considering the investment the Army has made into developing its own ‘App Store’, the continued run-on makes sense.
As of last year, this online marketplace was offering 17 apps for Android phones and 16 for iPhones, ranging in use from the ‘Chinese Mandarin Civil Affairs Phrasebook’ to the ‘MWR (Morale, Welfare and Recreation) Assets Locator’, and was set to launch by early 2012.
With ongoing input from DARPA, newer apps are expected to provide such things as instant translation of foreign languages, GPS mapping and – more interestingly – an experimental UAV remote-control that allows soldiers to float a metal detector over the terrain in front of them at the slide of a thumb, in what is another example of serious counter-IED investment.

One generation’s gift to the next

Government employees are also picking up on the utility of smart phones as an all-in-one, with US officials and UK members of parliament being the latest to push the request through for the technology to be made standard issue.
Meanwhile, tablet computers for the provision of instant communication, mapping, and the full range of network enabled capabilities between units are also verified additions to many of the ongoing future soldier programmes across the world, including India’s F-INSAS, and France’s FÉLIN.

Key to the development of these apps is of course the feedback from soldiers on the frontline, many of whom are already savvy when it comes to picking up and mastering new technology, given the huge emergence of our digital world.

The feedback helps all aspects of the USA’s own future soldier programme, and in particular its ‘Nett Warrior’ branch, designed to provide accurate situational awareness to the dismounted leader, and which is aimed to decrease blue-on-blue incidents as much as increase successful and precise offensives.

This programme is based largely on app-based technology, and is implemented through those existing 40 devices in the field via Raytheon’s MAINGATE solution, turning data channels into Internet Protocol (IP).

The defence giant has also run demonstrations on in-development solution to transferring simultaneous data, voice and live video over a 3G network between tactical radio and commercial smart phones.

The cost of eventually providing all soldiers with smart comms has been estimated at $1billion per annum, and cost efficiency may be difficult to fully measure if dreams of outfitting all feet on the ground.

McCarthy insisted that despite the benefits, it would not be right to spend “$2,500 to ruggedize a $200 phone.”

Standing in the way
The move to military smart technology is of course aimed at simplification above all else, but the road to establishing this for soldiers is not without its difficulties.
Providing energy for these devices always presents a challenge, so incorporating mobile power sources within the soldier’s equipment is a must for the future electricity-reliant battle space, with many believing the best way to go in terms of smart technology is through solar energy panels.

The issue of regulated bandwidth remains more problematic, requiring mobile wi-fi hubs to provide coverage to remote areas, which may even include “airborne cell towers” being deployed in helicopters. Lack of signal, as plagues standard civilian networks, would not be tolerated in the heat of action.

Most significantly, cast-iron encryption seems to have been the primary delay in getting this kit out to troops – that is, until deals in recent months between the military and the private sector.

It has not be lost on infantry commanders that cyber defence must be jointly improved if troops are to be integrated with the digital space while engaged in operations, but it is only now that a solution seems to have been formed.
Google has now been chosen to develop networks secure enough to transmit high-classification communications for those deployed in theatre, and eventually, federal agencies on home soil will also benefit. The beefed up Android software will grace over a hundred more smart devices being shipped to the Army next month.
According to reports, the open source approach Google takes to publishing its code won over the Army’s decision-makers, whereas Apple insisted on protecting its intellectual property to a degree that made it unworkable for this type of development.

Despite this, Apple still has a part to play in the future battlefields, as General Martin Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, acknowledged that he uses a disconnected iPad to peruse classified cables.

For now, at least, DARPA is prioritising its smart phone project, and the flexibility of the Google operating system could in theory allow for third parties to strengthen and debug any problems with the military-grade software.

McCarthy and other managers of military digital communications programmes for international defence forces will be gathering at Tactical Communications 2012, taking place at the Mayfair Conference Centre, London, UK, between April 23 - 25.
Event information is available at, or by emailing, or phoning +44 (0) 20 7368 9300.
Click to find out more

The Landscape of business–university collaboration

3.1 Introduction
3.2 Landscape and domains
3.3 Relationship management and the emergence of strategic partnerships

Case study: Siemens – University of Lincoln
Case study: Proctor and Gamble – Durham University
Case study: BAE systems – University of Bristol
3.4 Collaborative advantage
3.5 First enquiry connectivity
3.6 Responsiveness of universities to business needs
3.7 Reflections
3.1 Introduction
The landscape of business–university collaboration is hugely diverse; it has grown immensely in both
breadth and depth since the 2003 Lambert Review, as the content of this Review demonstrates.
However, the totality of evidence collected during this Review cannot be reflected in a single
document; the vast majority of the submitted work will receive neither praise nor acknowledgement
here, but that does not diminish its quality or its impact.

3.2 Landscape and domains
The landscape of collaboration consists of a wide variety of domains where there is real expertise
and strength, often of a highly specialist kind. These domains are wide ranging:

•From future-oriented research in advanced technologies, to in-house upskilling of
•From university science park developments, to support for entrepreneurial research
students finding their way in the business world;
•From providing progression routes to higher-level apprenticeships, to enhancing the skills of
post doctoral staff for their transition into the business world;
•From improving enterprise skills amongst our undergraduates, to enabling small companies
to recognise the value of employing a first graduate;
•From supporting spin-out companies from research teams, to helping government agencies
attract major employers to invest in the UK.
Whilst the teaching, enterprise and research domains are familiar within the university sector,
domains for business collaboration are not defined solely by a typology of activity; they may be
defined by a professional field, an industry or by specialisation within an industry, particularly in
research. No one university operates in all domains within the landscape. Some specialist institutions
will operate in very few; it is for each university to make a strategic decision about its domains of

During this Review, it has become increasingly clear that many individuals and organisations working
within this landscape have detailed knowledge of specific domains but limited or no knowledge of
other domains, or even knowledge of their existence. This is understandable, and indeed may be
considered a strength, as further development within the specialist domains of business–university
collaboration requires a focused approach. However, in the context of broader policy formulation,
knowledge of the entire landscape is absolutely critical if we are to realise the full potential of
universities in supporting UK economic growth. Without that broader knowledge, economic policy
cannot be reliably informed by evidence, good practice cannot be readily disseminated, and the
supply chain of high-level skills, innovation and research from universities to business will continue
to be incoherent and suboptimal. Further, at a time when economic growth is our greatest priority,
and the contribution that universities make to the economy is under intense scrutiny, inadequate
knowledge of that landscape is untenable. Without such knowledge there is a risk that positions
are derived from narrow personal experience or information provided by an interested third party,
uninformed by a wider understanding of the landscape. There is a pressing need for government,

businesses and universities alike to recognise this context and to commit to a collaborative approach
to ensure the linkage of partial areas of knowledge and a full understanding of the landscape is
developed and maintained.

However, currently, there is no substantive national forum where such knowledge is assembled and
can be consulted. There is no reliable information base that can be a reference point for business,
universities and government alike; that can provide objective analysis and advice and that can
operate outside a lobbying environment.

An organisation that operates only in a limited set of domains within the landscape cannot have the
breadth of interest to represent the entire landscape and clearly, sector interests and obligations
prevent either a business-, or a university-led organisation from fulfilling such a role. Such a forum
has to be one where business and university leaders sit as equals within its governance structure and
which covers the entire landscape.

The only forum that meets these criteria and has a distinct and comprehensive mission in this field
is the CIHE36; a subscription organisation that has evolved from being a think tank into a body that
undertakes research in specific areas of business–university collaboration. Critically, its governing
council includes many prominent business and university chief executives, people with standing and
authority in their organisations. It is respected within both the university and business communities
and its governance structure meets the criteria of representation, balance and objectivity. However,
presently it lacks capacity, which means that its potential value remains untapped. Such a forum
has the capability to become a prominent and systemic national influence upon future business–
university collaboration, policy and development, complementing the activities of sectoral, business,
academic and policy organisations that are active in this sphere and drawing on their expertise.

Recommendation 1

CIHE should be invited to develop its structure and its infrastructure to become an independent
subscription-based charity that becomes the focus for information on business–university
collaboration. It will gather and maintain a comprehensive repository of good practice, undertake
commissioned studies and provide a reliable information source for future substantive reviews.

Government may need to provide short-term funding to establish CIHE in this role.

3.3 Relationship management and the emergence of strategic partnerships
In terms of ongoing collaboration management, universities operate most frequently in a ‘one-
to-many’ model. A university will establish multiple partnerships, operating in the various
domains where it has expertise. The reciprocal model for a complex business is the partnership
with different universities for different domains of activity; corporates seek collaboration with
the university that best meets their needs in a particular field. The challenges are similar in the
context of risk management: there is potential for fragmentation of activity and an increasing
overhead of managing multiple relationships.

Clearly specific business needs require direct contact between the specialists within the business
and the specialists within the university, typically in research collaboration, in staff development
or in recruitment. For both parties there is a need for institutional knowledge of these multiple
relationships; for the university to ensure that its other domains of expertise are exposed to an
existing partner; for the business to ensure that it obtains optimum benefit from its knowledge
of the university sector and its expertise.

In some corporates, for example BAE systems, AstraZeneca, Rolls Royce, QinetiQ, and Glaxo
Smith Kline, this corporate knowledge is held within an executive position that has explicit
responsibility for university collaboration. This role is not only beneficial to the business but also
a clear reference point for university collaborators. In some other businesses the responsibility
and the contact points are less clear.

For some universities knowledge of business partnerships is also held at executive management
level, providing a clear reference point for business contact, regardless of the domain of
collaboration. In other universities that executive reference point is less clear.

I make no formal recommendation here; it is for business leaders to decide how they identify
the appropriate partners for their business needs and how they ensure that their connectivity
remains optimal. Similarly I make no recommendation about university structures in managing
collaboration; it is for the university to decide how it best manages its multiple relationships and
optimises its existing partnerships by extending its collaboration.

However, both business and university leaders may wish to reflect upon their institutional
knowledge of the full landscape of business–university collaboration, and on the management
of the partnerships that they have. For universities this reflection should extend to strategic
decisions concerning the domains that the university wishes to provide; for business it should
extend to matching their needs to those universities that best meet their requirements within the
appropriate domain.

In recent years a model of strategic partnerships has evolved whereby a single university is
able to meet the collaboration needs of a business in multiple domains. These are not exclusive
partnerships, but explicitly cover more than one domain with possibility of extension into
others. The potential efficiency of such partnerships is clear and the next substantive Review
may wish to assess their success.

Case study: Siemens – University of Lincoln
The Siemens–University of Lincoln partnership involves multiple layers across a broad spectrum
of activities. A collaborative R&D commissioning framework has generated six times the turnover
in the original business plan, with significant business benefits generated for the company and
research outcomes for the university, whilst protecting intellectual property and observing
commercial sensitivities. Siemans have co-located with Lincoln’s engineering department;
engaging in the teaching of students and in providing scholarships, internships and consultancy
projects, graduating ‘industry-ready’ students. The Siemens technology needs are reflected in
the Lincoln’s engineering undergraduate programmes and the partners have co-designed an MSc
Energy Renewables and Power.

Case study: Proctor and Gamble – Durham University
A Master Collaboration Agreement established Durham University as a core strategic research
partner of Proctor and Gamble (P&G). Durham was recognised by P&G as Global Business
Development University Partner of the Year in 2011 following an innovative approach in which
the research needs and research capabilities of both partners have been mapped and core

areas of mutual interest identified. More than 80 Durham academics are now linked with a
similar number of P&G researchers in locations ranging from Newcastle to Frankfurt, Brussels,
Beijing and Cincinnati in areas including surface sciences, biophysical sciences electronic goods,
manufacturing and consumer psychology. The partnership has already secured more than
£5.7 million in external funding for a series of projects and studentships with a similar volume
of projects currently under development with the company. The partnership has launched a
programme disseminating new ways of integrating industrial and academic teams through
existing collaborations of both partners and RCUK.

Case study: BAE systems – University of Bristol
BAE Systems and the University of Bristol have agreed a Memorandum of Understanding that
defines areas of strategic collaboration. The memorandum defines a wide range of activities
within areas of engineering and science where there is common interest in design, manufacture,
operation and through-life support and capability of engineered systems. It includes both long-
term fundamental research projects; medium/short-term projects requiring the application of
generic knowledge to specific issues; reciprocated staff secondments; supervision of projects and
theses by BAE staff at BEng, MEng and MSc levels; placements of the University’s MEng students
and postgraduate education through MSc, PhD (DTC and CASE), EngD.

3.4 Collaborative advantage
Many would argue that competition within the UK university sector has driven efficiency,
effectiveness and diversity over the last two decades whilst maintaining excellence. No one
university covers the entire landscape of university business collaboration, and yet each domain
is important to the businesses that rely upon it for their development. Diversity is a strength
of our university sector in that it enables specialisation in strengths; it ensures that the entire
spectrum of business support can be found somewhere within the university system.

Whilst it is the role of university leaders to promote the excellence of their own universities,
our university sector as a whole is a key asset in the economic future of our country. The
efforts of UUK to promote these strengths are admirable and regional associations, where
they exist, attempt to present a complementary profile of university missions. It would be
helpful if university leaders could emphasise the complementary strengths of UK universities
in terms of meeting business needs. Without mutual recognition of the expertise of others, the
competitiveness of UK universities has the potential to become a weakness.

Specifically, in terms of the reputation of the sector as a whole, it is critically important that
universities are open about the domains in which they operate and refer demands that they
cannot meet to another university or a source of guidance where such information may be
found. Collaboration between universities in supplying business needs can only benefit the
university sector as a whole. Universities may wish to reflect upon the concepts of collaborative
advantage in meeting business needs and review their policies on the referral of business
enquiries to other universities or relevant agencies.

Following the demise of the RDAs, many regional associations of universities closed; there was
no business need to collaborate on a regional basis. Others sustained their associations3738.

New alliances may be formed in order to supply a more comprehensive response to business
needs than any one university could achieve alone, recognising the strengths of diversity and
collaborative advantage. The recent N8 Research partnership39 has launched a new Industry
Innovation Forum working with global companies and SMEs. It is supported by the TSB and is
an example that may provide a template that others will follow. This is to be welcomed; but the
issue of a comprehensive coverage remains. Such partnerships have an obligation to ensure that
enquiries that are outside its domains of activity are referred to other universities, or consortia,
which may be able to meet those business requirements. I make no formal recommendations
in this regard but the consortia of universities may wish to consider how to ensure that such a
referral system is efficiently and effectively operated, and government funders of these consortia
may wish to reassure themselves that such systems are operational.

3.5 First enquiry connectivity
For the ‘first enquiry’ there are many routes into a university, both formally through direct
enquiry and informally through business networking. Every university website examined in this
Review has a portal for potential business clients, but the existence of such a portal does not
ensure efficient connectivity and development. Practice in enquiry management varies within
universities according to their structures, processes and procedures. Some universities rely
upon a centralised and monitored information flow with a comprehensive CRM system, others
on distributed authority and information maintenance; all will have many different business
collaborations to manage on an ongoing basis, alongside new enquiries. In the context of a
healthy portfolio of business collaboration, it is vital that enquiry management systems are
reliable and provide information for management purposes. Those universities that do not
regularly review the effectiveness of their enquiry management systems may wish to undertake
an audit to ensure efficient first-level responsiveness; an ineffective relationship management
system carries significant reputational risks.

3.6 Responsiveness of universities to business needs
Despite the significant volume of evidence of successful business–university collaboration, a
belief that our universities are ‘unresponsive’ remains in some quarters. This disconnect requires

There are many reasons why collaborations do not progress beyond the stage of initial
discussions; indeed Imperial College has promoted specific research in the field40. In summary,
there are a number of generic reasons; some may believe that they are largely a consequence of
the culture of universities and the business models that they operate; others may view many of
them as not uncommon in supply chain management:

1.The needs of the business do not align with the mission and strategy of the university.
2.Time scale and capacity mismatch; a university has already committed its resources and
does not have the available capacity to meet the timescale that the business needs.
3.Capability mismatch; a university does not have the skill set or the facilities to meet the
needs of the business.
4.The cycle of bureaucracy: where external funding is required, the bidding cycle does not
meet the timescale the business needs.
5.Financial constraints: a university is unable to provide the service required for the price
the company is willing to pay. This is particularly apparent in the context of full economic
costing in research collaboration where business input to the research merits valuation.
6.Sustainability: the investment required by the university to provide the service does not
have an acceptable payback period.
7.Mismatch in expectations and objectives: expectations of outcomes from collaboration are
not mutually recognised.
8.Failure to agree on the future of the intellectual property that may be generated. Although
much progress has been made in this area since the publication of the Lambert Intellectual
Property agreements 4142, it is still reported as a significant issue in some negotiations.
9.Contrasting views on the management of indemnities and liabilities between prospective
partners; viewed as being an increasing problem
These are all legitimate reasons for non-realisation of potential collaborations. Informed
businesses recognise that the objectives of universities in collaboration are different from those
of the company; successful collaboration requires a duality of interest. In the context of research
collaboration the CBI have published a good practice guide for collaboration for that purpose.43

As several respondents have noted, responsiveness can be achieved by saying ‘No, because…’
quickly, followed by a referral to another university if appropriate. A non-response or
prevarication has an impact not only upon the reputation of the university concerned but upon
the university sector as a whole, compounding the ‘folklore’ of the ‘unresponsive university’.

In order to make their services more flexible and responsive, many universities have established
arms-length subsidiary companies that provide services within a commercial envelope often,
but not invariably, using the resources of the university. This form of outsourcing provides
an organisation that can mediate between the business client’s objectives and those of the
university. As universities apply more commercial business models to their operations, I would
foresee a growth in this activity, with a high level of responsiveness, rapid redirection to another
university where necessary, and potentially a lower rate of the use of ‘No, because…’ in the

3.7 Reflections
The landscape of collaboration is growing in breadth and depth in a dynamic manner. However
there are many areas in the collaborative landscape that need to be improved if our economy is to
gain optimal advantage from our university sector in the context of global competition. Addressing
these areas through individual targeted actions, without reference to other related parts of the
landscape, carries significant risks; this is an integrated ecosystem. In order to make sound policy,
proposals intended to improve performance in one domain of the landscape have to be evaluated in
the context of the landscape as a whole. To achieve that, knowledge of the entire landscape has to
be established; we need to develop an authoritative source of knowledge in that regard.

Universities operate in various domains of the landscape; an individual university’s excellence in one
domain does not mean it achieves excellence in other domains. Excellence in the university sector
as a whole requires excellence across all domains; and that means each university has to define the
domains in which it operates and achieve excellence in them. For the university sector as a whole
to be the world leader in business–university collaboration there can be no place for second-class
performance anywhere in the landscape.

The supply chain concepts of collaboration in the delivery of skills, research and innovation to
business is increasingly relevant to universities, and the business models of strategic alliances
are emerging as sustainable relationships. In order to optimise the exploitation of this capability
and ensure that the wider benefit of business need transcends the competitive culture of our

Meanwhile the reputation of ‘unresponsiveness’ has to be proactively addressed. The
celebration of collaborative success is too often diluted by accusations or examples of failure.
Universities cannot deliver all the services that business needs in a manner that business may
wish; that is the nature of supply chains. The solution to this disconnect, where it exists, is
through clear and open communication between the principals at executive level and mutual
respect of the needs and constraints of the other party. To achieve that, transparency of the
responsibility for business–university collaboration at executive level is a prior necessity.

43 ‘Business–University Collaboration for research and innovation: a guide for members’ July 2010

Business-University Collaboration

“We also want our universities to look again at how they work with business across their teaching and research activities, to promote better teaching, employer sponsorship, innovation and enterprise. We have asked Professor Sir Tim Wilson, former vice-chancellor of the University of Hertfordshire, to undertake a review into how we make the UK the best place in the world for university-industry collaboration.”

White Paper: Putting Students at the heart of higher education. paragraph 13, June 2011
Universities and their activities are integral parts of economic and business development; they are key players in the many supply chains that feed diverse aspects of business activities. Large companies interface with many different universities; depending upon their capabilities and expertise; equally many SMEs interact with their local university as they have the capacity and capability to meet their needs. Other SMEs, especially in leading edge technologies, seek out the leading researchers wherever they may be located.

There is no simple model of interaction; the diverse business needs and diversity of supply from universities leads to complexity in relationships. The key to improving effectiveness of the interface does not lie in regulation or in conformity; it lies in diversity, information sharing, mutual recognition and voluntary partnership.

Review Contents
Executive Summary
1. Introduction and methodology
2. A History of recent government policy on business–university interaction
3. The Landscape of business–university collaboration
4. Development of skills and knowledge for employment
5. Business–university collaboration in research and innovation
6. Graduate recruitment: the interface between students, universities and employers
7. Universities in their local communities: enabling economic growth

Time to recognise independent Balochistan: US Congressman

Last Updated: Wednesday, February 29, 2012, 00:03

Washington: A top American lawmaker has underlined the need for the US to support the cause of independent Balochistan in a bid to combat Taliban and al Qaeda terrorists.

"Perhaps it is time to recognize an independent Balochistan, where we'd have a friend who would not keep supplying the enemy of America, those people train and prepare for 9/11 to kill as many thousands of Americans as they could," said Texas Congressman Louie Gohmert.

"We don't want to leave Afghanistan in the hands of the Taliban and all of the American life and treasure be for nothing. But there is an easy answer," Gohmert said in his remarks on the floor of the US House of Representatives.

"We leave, but we empower the enemy of our enemy, the Northern Alliance and the Baluch people. Let them take care of their own area. Let them prevent the Taliban from taking over. Let them prevent Pakistan from becoming such a focused enemy as they have unabated. Let them worry," he said.

Gohmert is one of the two Co-sponsors of the Congressional resolution in the House of Representatives introduced by the Congressman Dana Rohrabacher.

The non-binding resolution calls for self-determination in Balochistan.

The resolution, so far has failed to garner additional support from the lawmakers, but experts note that it has added to the strain in US-Pak relationship.

Pakistan has strongly objected to such a resolution and has termed it as interference in the internal affairs of the country.

The US government has said that it respects the territorial integrity of Pakistan, but has expressed concern over the human rights violations in Balochistan.

In his remarks, Gohmert said that after Partition of India, the arbitrary lines that were drawn put Balochistan into Pakistan.

"This used to be a Baluch area. As a recent Pakistan Daily News editorial pointed out, most of Pakistan's natural resources come from this area," the lawmaker said.

He said he has been told that the Taliban getting their support from southern Pakistan and are coming through the Baluch area.

He said the Baloch don't want that as they "want to be our friends". Blaming Islamabad, he said the Baloch "have been terrorized by the Pakistani Government for decades".



India and the New U.S. Defense Strategy

By S. Amer Latif

Feb 23, 2012

Recently the U.S. Department of Defense released its new strategic guidance, which reflected the expected shift toward the Asia-Pacific region, touted by U.S. officials since the fall of last year. What was a bit unexpected was the attention given to India in such a key document. Long-standing Asian allies such as Australia, Japan, Korea, and others were lumped under the label of “existing alliances,” while India was singled out with the following passage: “The United States is also investing in a long term strategic partnership with India to support its ability to serve as a regional economic anchor and provider of security in the broader Indian Ocean region.”

The specific mention of India raises interesting questions about how India fits into the United States’ vision for security in the Asia-Pacific region. Washington and New Delhi have been actively building their defense relations through defense sales, exercises, and high-level military engagements. India now conducts more exercises with the United States than with any other country, and it is gradually integrating U.S. platforms and systems into the various branches of its armed forces.

India has also performed admirably in counterpiracy operations off the Horn of Africa and elsewhere throughout the Indian Ocean. It has been actively engaging countries throughout the Asia-Pacific region with ship visits, high-level defense meetings, and the provision of military equipment, and it has even demonstrated leadership by establishing the Indian Ocean Naval Symposium and organizing the MILAN naval exercises held every two years.

Despite the impressive progress in recent years, questions still remain about India’s commitment and ability to be a security provider in Asia. Each of New Delhi’s defense engagements abroad is closely scrutinized and calibrated with an eye toward available military capacity, the scope and optics of the mission, and how a particular defense engagement will be politically perceived at home. Rather than being guided by an overarching national security strategy or strategic planning documents, these decisions are usually made on a case-by-case basis.

Which brings us back to the U.S. defense strategy. As the United States implements its pivot toward the Asia-Pacific region, it will actively seek capable and reliable partners to cooperate on maintaining security and stability in Asia. With the recent announcement of 2,500 marines deploying to Australia on a rotational basis, positioning of littoral combat ships in Singapore, and discussion of intensified defense cooperation with the Philippines, questions may arise within the U.S. security establishment and Asia about what India’s enduring contributions will be to this endeavor after being so prominently mentioned in the United States’ defense strategy.

Knowledgeable people inside the Pentagon and at Pacific Command know it will take a long time for India to emerge as a credible provider of security in Asia. They also know about India’s inhibitions regarding a closer U.S. partnership—ranging from India’s desire to preserve its strategic autonomy to its reluctance at being ensnared in a U.S.-led “counter China” strategy. U.S. policymakers understand these limitations and, consequently, do not expect India to be a consistent, “go-to” security partner anytime in the near future. Aside from the 2004 tsunami episode, instances of bilateral cooperation on operational matters have been scarce.

So why even mention India in the document? For the simple reason that the United States is making, in Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s words “a strategic bet” that India will promote peace and security in the long term. While Washington waits (and hopes) to benefit from its bet, Washington and New Delhi should continue working toward a security partnership that evolves from conducting exercises to becoming reliable partners during crises. Such an evolution will take time.

However, Asia is currently experiencing a dynamic and changing security environment. Asian countries are rejuvenating regional security architecture through their respective partnerships, not just with the United States but with each other, in response to China’s growing military power. India has been a party to some of this change with the U.S.-India-Japan trilateral dialogue and its participation in the East Asia Summit in Bali last year. But a country with India’s growing political, economic, and military capabilities has more to offer than just participation in multilateral forums. New Delhi knows that the security landscape in Asia is rapidly changing, and it should act accordingly to prevent any missed opportunities for playing a more decisive role in Asia.

To that end, India should develop its own strategic guidance for deploying its military and seriously consider closer engagement with the United States in shaping Asia’s evolving architecture. Partnering more closely with the United States in Asia amplifies India’s strategic impact in a way that India cannot have acting alone. Rather than viewing such an endeavor as sacrificing its strategic autonomy, New Delhi should view this as an opportunity to augment its own capabilities until such time as it can confidently act on its own and have strategic impact.

In the meantime, U.S. military planners will implement the new strategic guidance and continue “investing” in the India partnership with the hope that one day soon India will become that provider of security for which the United States and Asia have been waiting.

S. Amer Latif is a visiting fellow with the Wadhwani Chair in U.S.-India Policy Studies at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, D.C.

Commentary is produced by the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), a private, tax-exempt institution focusing on international public policy issues. Its research is nonpartisan and nonproprietary. CSIS does not take specific policy positions. Accordingly, all views, positions, and conclusions expressed in this publication should be understood to be solely those of the author(s).


Kapil Sibal,
Mail Today

India is criticized in US circles for its reluctance to take position on difficult issues facing the international community, for fence-sitting and avoiding decisions that could carry political costs. It is accused of piggy-backing on the exertions the West makes to uphold the international order, without assuming its share of the resonsibility. Many Indian commentators join in such disparagement of India’s foreign policy.


But is India really a freeloader on the international system, enjoying its benefits but shirking responsibility for sustaining it? India, in reality, has been discriminated against and even punished by those who created the system in 1945 and who still resist calls to restructure it to reflect contemporary shifts in global power. India’s permanent membership of the Security Council is still a far away prospect. Without this India’s role is to implement decisions, not shape them, apart from having to tolerate an inferior international status vis a vis China.

The international financial institutions are still dominated by US and Europe; the G-8 has been expanded to G-20, not to cede control of economic and financial levers but to preserve the exisiting system by co-opting a larger number of players, mostly allies of the West.

The NPT and the non-proliferation regime spawned by it, discriminatory ab initio against India, has been an instrument, bilaterally and through the NSG, to punish its nuclear sector with international sanctions for decades. The CTBT negotiations recall the animus in the international system against India’s nuclear posture. Our missile and space programmes have been targetted by technology denial regimes like the MTCR.

Changed international thinking on India’s nuclear programme has come at a price. India has had to accept onerous non-proliferation obligations not applicable to the five nuclear weapon states. India is still denied recognition as a nuclear weapon state; it remains outside the NSG and MTCR; its access to dual use technology is still a problem. The pressure on India to dilute its nuclear liability legislation shows that an independent approach to issues hitherto determined by the dominant nuclear power is not accepted.

By not joining any alliance system, India has tried to deal with its security problems on its own. Unlike many countries who by outsourcing their security to the US reduced their own defence burden and, as in the case of Japan and Germany, concentrated on building their economies that later challenged US interests, India has not benefitted from any such “free-loading”. It has received no military aid either. On the contrary the US has endangered India’s security by arming Pakistan- a massive “free-loader”- and winking at its clandestine acquisition of nuclear weapon technology.

China too has been a “free-loader”. It was built up strategically in the 70s by the US to counter the Soviet Union, with prodigious economic support from its allies as well. The US repeatedly overlooked China’s egregious nuclear and missile proliferation activities. Today China has become a strategic competitor of the US. It seeks to revise, not uphold the US built international system. India has neither enjoyed such latitude and support from the US, nor does it not seek to undermine US interests. So, in what way has India “piggy-backed” on the US?


The security of the sea lanes of communication in the Indian Ocean is critical for China’s trade and energy flows. The US, in mounting cooperation with India, is active in providing maritime security with its naval assets in the Indian Ocean. The US, it is argued, is underwriting the stability of the Gulf region, which is a vital source of energy for China, through its political and military presence there. Even as China benefits from the US security presence in the Indian Ocean/Gulf area, it is challenging the US strategically in the South China Sea before it extends its presence into the Pacific and the Indian Oceans to cause further strategic headaches to India and the US in the future. This is “free-loading”.

US is pressing India to downgrade its ties with Iran, and unmindful of India’s energy security, Iran’s oil sector is being targetted. US policies are exposing India to the double jeopardy of rupture of relations with Iran and a higher financial burden because of increasing oil prices. India can probably buy additional oil from Saudi Arabia, but at prevailing commercial prices, bringing India no benefit. India is not “free-loading”, it is bearing the costs of US policy.


The changes in the Arab world in the name of democracy or the Right to Protect are bringing to power Islamist regimes. US intervention in Iraq has brought neither democracy not stability to the region, even as it has strengthened Iran’s position. Saudi Arabia and Qatar have been harnessed to lead the charge against the secular Syrian regime. The promotion of a Shia-Sunni conflict, with Iran and Saudi Arabia as protagonists and US and its partners playing a dangerously ambiguous game with Israeli prodding, imposes unwanted choices on countries like India that have no rational interest in choosing sides.

Demanding India’s support for dubious interventionist, regime change policies in which negotiations are excluded unless those targetted capitulate, and on not obtaining it to accuse India of “slapping the US in its face” is hectoring, not diplomacy. Why does India’s unwillingness to endorse questionable policies without demur mean “fence-sitting”? Is it advisable that we suspend our judgment on the merits of issues from our perspective to become eligible for rewards for opportunism? And if the US opens the space further for Islamism in our region, and this includes negotiations with the Taliban and exposing Afghanistan to an increasingly radicalized Pakistan, how will have India “piggy-backed” on US policies?

The writer is a former Foreign Secretary(

Bangladesh and now Independent Baluchistan

by Syed Atiq ul Hassan
(Tuesday, February 28, 2012)

"There is no question that the situation in Baluchistan is alarming and needs urgent attention....Military operation cannot be the solution – Pakistan should not forget what happened in East Pakistan."

First East Pakistan to Bangladesh and now towards Baluchistan to Independent Baluchistan, political reasons may be un-identical but the tale of injustices; ignorance and autocratic behaviour of Pakistani establishment and civilian federal bureaucracy remain the same.

In May 1954, Army dictator and then Governor-General, General Malik Ghulam Mohammed appointed Mr. Iskandar Mirza as the Governor of then East Pakistan supposedly to maintain peace in troubling East Pakistan. Iskandar’s first step, as a Governor, was put up more than 300 prominent political leaders including Sheikh Mujeeb-ur-Rehman (the pioneer of Bangladesh) and Mr. Yousuf Ali Chaudhary behind bars. Within 4 to 5 weeks more than 1000 arrests were made including professors, scholars and 33 parliamentarians. At that time, Nawabzada Mohammed Ali Borgra was the Prime Minister of Pakistan who was a close friend of Mohammed Ali Jinnah and a prominent vocalist of Pakistan’s movement. On 24th of October (1954), General Ghulam Mohammed dissolved Constituent Assembly and declared emergency in the entire Pakistan. On the next day (25th of October), Pakistan signed a defence agreement with the United States (US) that US will provide assistance to Pakistan if they face war conflict with any country. From 1954 to 1958 Pakistan went through an unsettled democratic process followed by more than ten years (1958 to 1969) of dictatorship rule by Field Marshal Ayub Khan. The feel of deprivation and ignorance further heated in East Pakistan yet no one in West Pakistan acknowledged the boiling hatred against the establishment that could result dangerous consequence to the sovereignty of the Country.

First General Election under the newly formed Election Commission was held in Pakistan in 1970. There were 31,211,220 voters in East Pakistan and 25,730,280 in West Pakistan. There were 300 national assembly seats each in West and East Pakistan of total 600 seats of the national assembly. Awami Leagues of Sheik Mujeeb-ur-Rehman won 288 seats in East Pakistan nil in West Pakistan. Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) won 144 seats in West Pakistan and nil in East Pakistan, 13 seats won by other parties & independents in East Pakistan and 157 seats won by other parties & independents in West Pakistan. Therefore, it was very much clear that Sheikh Mujeeb-ur-Rehman of Awami League deserved to be called to form the National Government but the power was handed over to Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto. It was obvious to understand that the military establishment and civilian bureaucracy of West Pakistan did not trust on East Pakistan’s leadership. The biggest dilemma of Pakistan which led to the split in the geography of Pakistan is that the conspirators were treated as heroes and heroes as traitors.

Mujeeb-ur-Rehman was the rising young leader of All India Muslim League during the Independence movement in United India. He joined All India Muslim Students Federation in 1940. The founder of Pakistan Quaid-e-Azam Mohammed Ali Jinnah brought him in a leading role in Muslim Students Federation. Mujeeb fought for Pakistan from the Muslim League platform. He was among the pioneers of Pakistan. If we look at the post 1970 election fiasco and the two main contenders of the new government, there was no comparison of Mujeeb with Bhutto as a leader for the nation.

Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto’s political life started in hands of Field Marshal Ayub Khan who was Bhutto’s mentor. Bhutto served Ayub Khan and his then newly formed convention Muslim league. Bhutto was the Secretary General of Ayub Khan’s convention Muslim League. Bhutto and Ayub were the pioneers of damaging Jinnah’s Pakistan Muslim League. Yet, the so-called champion of democracy and Jialey (activists) of PPP and many others title Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto as Quaid-e-Awam and founder of democracy in Pakistan. Unfortunately, the army establishment and civilian bureaucracy treated Mujeeb as a leader of Bengalis not as a leader of Pakistanis. For me, the first black day in Pakistan’s political history was 26th of March 1971 when Mujeeb-ur-Rehman announced the declaration of independence of East Pakistan and the establishment of the sovereign People's Republic of Bangladesh. And the reason was one, the army dictator General Yahya Khan and Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto preferred army-civil nexus on the solidarity of the Country. Eventually, the people of Pakistan had to go through a painful and appalling saga of East Pakistan to Bangladesh in 1971 and the world saw the shameful images - high ranking Pakistani army officers and about 100,000 soldiers surrendered and bowed down in front of Indian Army in December 1971.

Jinnah’s Pakistan came to end when East Pakistan became the Bangladesh. Pakistani politicians and army officials blamed people of East Pakistan as being burden on Pakistan’s treasury. They were called coward and beggars. Today, Bangladeshi economy is better than Pakistan’s. Today Bangladeshi Taka is better than the Pakistani Rupee in international market. Today, Pakistan is begging Bangladesh to play cricket in Pakistan with assurance to provide them full security so that the Pakistani image can be restored for holding international cricket events in Pakistan.

The most unfortunate dilemma is that neither Pakistani army & civilian bureaucracy nor the Pakistani cunning and self-centred politicians learned from history. Now story of East Pakistan is repeating in Baluchistan with the un-identical reasons. The people of East Pakistan were not against the ideology of Pakistan rather they were the founders of Pakistan. People of East Pakistan demanded for separation when they were refused to form the national government despite of the fact that they had majority of seats in the house of the federal parliament.

Baluchistan is now on the verge of taking separation from Pakistan. Baluchistan is a state full of natural resources. Located at the most important strategic location, Baluchistan is 44 percent of Pakistan’s total territory. Baluchistan is the only province of Pakistan which has close borders with Middle East, South-West, Central Asia with hot Arabian Sea coast which means if Baluchistan is separated from Pakistan, the existence of Pakistan will be on stake.

Having the least population compared to the other 3 provinces of Pakistan, Baluchistan has been providing gas, coal and other natural resources to the rest of the country. On the other hand the basic facilities like drinking water, power, education, health, transport and security in Baluchistan are close to none, even in most of the inland people have not been provided gas which they own. Instead of working for the people of Baluchistan and for the development of the province, Pakistani federal powers (army, bureaucrats) and even political leaders when in power made deals with Sardars (Tribal Leaders) paying them ransoms (Ghuda Tax) from public accounts for the security of sensitive installations, gas pipe lines, electricity grids, railway lines etc. These Sardars of Baluchistan are enemies of their own people. For them the ordinary Baluch are consumable commodity to use them as and when needed to fight against Pakistani forces if federal government don’t pay attention to their demands and take any action against them. They receive millions of dollars from the federal public accounts on the name of peace in Baluchistan but they hardly spent any money on the people of Baluchistan. So, it is very important to look the background of these Sardars and why & how they became the part of Pakistan.

Before the Partition of United India in 1947, the State of Qallat was an independent State but running like a British Colony headed by Mir Ahmed Yar Khan (under the shelter of UK). Qallat was comprised of about 22 percent of then Baluchistan. Looking into Baluchistan mayhem it is very important to remember that in 1947, Mir Ahmed Yar Khan reportedly approached India to be in the dominion of India but then Prime Minister of India, Jawahlal Nehru, refused Mir Ahmed. Mir Ahmed then joined Pakistan on the agreement that defence, currency, foreign office and finance will be controlled by the federal government of Pakistan. Later, when One-Unit was formed in Pakistan in 1954 Baluchistan became the part of West Pakistan.

Khan of Qallat had differences with the other Sardars even within his family on his decision to join with Pakistan. That is why just in a year time - in 1948 – insurgencies against Pakistani army and law enforcement agencies began. They have formed Baluch nationalist movement which was basically structured by Sardars to play double games in case if Pakistani government don’t follow their demands. Brother of Ahmed Yar Khan, Abdul Karim Khan denied the accord with Pakistan. He claimed that the Pakistani government forcibly asked Mir Ahmed Yar Khan to join Qallat with Pakistan. He declared separatist movement in 1948 and launched guerrilla war with his followers against Pakistan forces. Ahmed Yar Khan with other Sardars launched insurgency against Pakistan law enforcement agencies.

Since 1960 the insurgency against Pakistani forces gained substantial increase. Pakistani establishment instead of paying attention to win the hearts and minds of the common Baluch and activists, they engaged Sardars (tribes; Bughti, Mengal, Mari and so on) and tried to make them happy. That is why; the activists’ movement of independent Baluchistan never attracted by the common and poor people of Baluchistan and spread at the grass level. The goals of running these movements are to create insurgency by their paid insurgents and slaves when needed in order to threat and negotiate best deal with the Pakistani establishment.

The tale of Baluchistan’s uncertainty spread over half a century, it is not possible for me to sum-up all those mayhems in this write-up, however, I could boldly say that from 1973 military operation by Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto to 2005 military operation by General Pervez Musharraf, I found that that these operations were launched supposedly to eliminate the anti-Pakistan movements but basically behind these operations were the conflicts between the federal powers and the tribal powers of Baluchistan. These operations never end any trouble in Baluchistan instead created more hatred among the common Baluchis, at the same time, provided Sardars opportunities to use poor Baluch against Pakistani law enforcement agencies.

The unfortunate saga is that Pakistani army, civil bureaucracy, and selfish politicians are still putting their interest in front of the interest of the people of Baluchistan and the integrity of Pakistan. Today, they are still trying to negotiate with those Sardars (tribal) who have always looked their interest and protection on the cost of the betterment of the common people of Baluchistan. Due to the remote territory, less population and lack of access to the media, Baluchistan political disorder and instability have been hidden from the people of rest of the country particularly from the people of Sind and Punjab.

Today, some sections of Pakistani politics are blaming murder of Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti as the cause of current instability in Baluchistan. Akbar Khan Bugti had been the Governor and Chief Minister of Baluchistan in the past. When in power, he was asked in an interview by Emma Duncan, an international journalist, how many people has he killed by himself as a tribal leader, he replied he did not count. In 2005, Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti and Mir Baluch Marri gave a 15-point agenda to Musharraf’s government. Their demands included greater control of the province's resources and freezing of army bases were total threat to the sovereignty of Pakistan and the actual reasons behind these demands were that Bugti wanted power of Baluchistan and increase in the annual ransoms on name of protection of sensitive installations of the country. At the same time, they made several attacks on military convoys, helicopters and other vehicles killing many army personnel including Inspector and Deputy General of Frontier Corps. Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti was killed in 2006 during the fight between his militia and Pakistani forces.

Today, Bughti’s grandson, Brahamdagh Khan Bugti has now taken the role. He has stood-up threatening Pakistan’s sovereignty. Unfortunately, the political pundits in Pakistan who are calling him as representative of deprived Baluch must answer how many personnel of Pakistani law enforcement agencies they have already killed and how much damaged they have done to the infrastructure of Baluchistan. Brahamdagh’s and his partners don’t allow Pakistan flag to be waved in their jurisdictions. They maintain their own jails and armed detachments. They do their own policing the people and run their own courts. Brahamdagh himself is now living a lavish life in Switzerland and getting funds for his separation movement from anti-Pakistan elements. According to reports he is receiving huge funds and other logistic support from India. These Sardars of Baluchistan have very simple strategy. As long as their vested interested are being served by the Pakistani government and establishment stick with Pakistan, as soon as the things are going against their interest, make the freedom movement alive.

Pakistani interior minister Rehman Malik announced that he would welcome Brahamdagh and others in Pakistan and withdraw all charges against them upon his returns to Pakistan. I would like to ask Mr. Malik that he should also reveal the list of murders of Pakistani soldiers and other important figures these Sardars have committed before gave them asylum. How long Pakistani establishment and bureaucracy listened to the threats of tribal leaders and make them happy on their demands.

Recently, three US Congressmen passed a resolution for independent and sovereign Baluchistan. This resolution has not value other than that United States want to pressurise Pakistani government against Pakistan’s decision of freezing NATO supply to Afghanistan and banned CIA activities in Pakistan passed a resolution.

There is no question that the situation in Baluchistan is alarming and needs urgent attention. Not attention to the threats and blackmailing of tribal leaders and foreign powers but attention to the needs of poor neglected poor of Baluchistan. Pakistani government should use the cane and carrot policy - canes for Sardars and carrots for the common people. Pakistani government should launch massive development program for the people of Baluchistan, provide extensive security to the ordinary people, build roads and damaged infrastructure, open new education, health and law & order enforcement centres and win the hearts and minds of the common Baluch. At the same time never bow down against Sardars and foreign powers, use full power to deal with anti-Pakistan elements, there should not be any comprised on the sovereignty of Pakistan. Another important matter is the continuation of democratic process in Baluchistan. Military operation cannot be the solution – Pakistan should not forget what happened in East Pakistan. At the same time, no concession to the anti-Pakistani elements doesn’t matter how Sarar is involved as these Sardar and their system is the biggest hurdle in the development of Baluchistan. And to win the hearts and minds of the people of Baluchistan so that they could feel that their future is with the Pakistan which is linked to the development of Baluchistan and providing basic rights and facilities to the common people of Baluchistan.