Civil military relations and Dawn leaks


The one tweet from DG ISPR once again exposed the real nature of relationship between the civilian leadership and military establishment. It was claimed that new leadership of the army and the civilian government enjoys fraternal relationship and working closely. But the stand off on the issue of Dawn leaks between the civilian government and the military leadership changed that perception.

The DG ISPR rejected the notification issued by the Prime Minister house and give the clear message that he is not the boss and Chief Executive of this country. Everybody in this country who knows little bit about the Pakistani politics understand clearly that who call the shots in this country. But the sort of strong reaction showed by the military establishment was inappropriate and clear sign of arrogance. That reaction was unnecessary. The damage has already been done. Whatever both sides now says to ease the tension but perception will not go away that the present government is very weak and so the democratic order.

The strong reaction showed by interior minister Ch.Nisar clearly indicates that what the civilian government thinks about the tweet. Ch. Nisar is a known pro- establishment politician who has a strong military connection. If he is ready to digest the bitter pill of the tweet then the situation can be easily assed.

It seems that both sides are interested to wash their dirty linen in the public. They do not care what the others are saying about this whole episode. The Western and Indian media got enough material to prove the point that its not the civilians but the military who runs this country.

This perception is not good for both the democratic institutions and the military. This one episode exposed the deep rooted mistrust that exist between the civilian government and the military establishment. They both need to sit down and have an open and honest discussion about all the main issues. If there are differences on the issues then the proper mechanism should be build to continue this dialogue.

The civilian government should understands that Pakistan is not a normal democratic state. The military has a special place in our public space and plays important role in the country. The government should do whatever is possible to do to change this perception that the present government is targeting the military to weaken this all important state institution. Pakistan needs strong armed forces as it needs strong democratic system and institutions. They both supplement each other. They are not opponents and rivals but a part of a strong democratic order. The civilian government should address all the genuine concerns of the military establishment.

 Both sides should understand that the country is facing serious challenges that can only be dealt if the both sides cooperate and respect each other. If any one thinks that military intervention will solve the existing problem then one is gravely mistaken. The military intervention will further complicate the situation.

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