Pakistani army

The Pakistan Army (Urdu: پاک فوج Pak Fauj (IPA: Pɑkʰ fɒ~ɔd͡ʒ); reporting name: PA) is the land-based uniform service branch of the Pakistan Armed Forces. The Pakistan Army came into existence after the independence of Pakistan in 1947. The Pakistan Army is a volunteer professional fighting force.[1] According to the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) it has an active force of 725,000 personnel as of April 2013. In addition there were around 500,000 reserves bringing the total to 1,225,000 troops.[2] The Constitution of Pakistan contains a provision for conscription, but it has never been imposed.

The primary mandate and mission of the army is to "dedicated to the service of the nation."[3] Since establishment in 1947, the army (along with its inter–services: Navy, Marines and PAF) has been involved inthree wars with neighboring India and several border skirmishes with Afghanistan.[4] Since 1947 it has maintained strong presence along with its inter-services in the Arab states during the past Arab-Israeli Wars, and aided the coalition in the first Gulf War. Recently, major joint-operations undertaken by the army include Operation Black Thunderstorm and Operation Rah-e-Nijat. Apart from conflicts, the army has been an active participant in UN missions and played a major role in rescuing trapped American soldiers from Mogadishu of Somalia in 1993 in Operation Gothic Serpent.

Under the

Mission

Pakistan Army serves as the land-based branch of the Pakistan Military. Chapter 2 of PART XII of Pakistani Constitution defines the purpose of the Army as:[8]

History

1947–1958


The Pakistan Army was created on 30 June 1947 from the division of the British Indian Army. The then soon to be created Dominion of Pakistan received six armoured, eight artillery and eight infantry regiments compared to the 12 armoured, forty artillery and twenty one infantry regiments that went to India. Fearing that India would take over the state of Kashmir, irregulars, scouts and tribal groups entered the Muslim majority state of Kashmir to oppose the Maharaja of Kashmir 1947. In response to this, the Maharaja acceded to India. The Indian Armed Forces were then deployed to Kashmir. This led to the Indo-Pakistani War of 1947. Regular Army units joined the invasion later on but were stopped after the refusal of the army chief of staff, British officer General Sir Frank Messervy, to obey Pakistani leader Muhammed Ali Jinnah's orders to move the army into Kashmir. A ceasefire followed on UN intervention with Pakistan occupying the northwestern part of Kashmir and India occupying the rest. Later, during the 1950s, the Pakistan Army received large amounts of economic and military aid from the United States and Great Britain after signing two mutual defence treaties, the Baghdad Pact, which led to the formation of the Central Treaty Organization, and the South East Asian Treaty Organization (SEATO) in 1954. This aid greatly expanded the Pakistan Army from its modest beginnings.

The sole division headquarters that went to Pakistan was the 7th. 8th and 9th Divisions were raised in 1947; 10, 12th and 14 Divisions were raised in 1948. 15 Div was raised in 1950. At some point before 1954, 6 Division was raised and 9 Division disbanded. 6 Division was disbanded at some point after 1954 as US assistance was available only for one armoured and six infantry divisions.

1958–1969

Pakistan Army took over from politicians for the first time when General Ayub Khan came to power through a bloodless coup in 1958. He formed Convention Muslim League which includes Pakistan's first elected Prime Minister Z.A. Bhutto. Tensions with India continued in the 1960s and a brief border skirmish was fought near the Rann of Kutch area during April 1965. On the night of 6 September 1965 Indian Army attacked the Punjab Province of Pakistan, without an announcement, Pakistan hold them off, eventually capturing about 1200 km area inside India but a treaty was reached and the area was given back. The war ended with UN backed ceasefire and followed by Tashkent Declaration. According to the Library of Congress Country Studies conducted by the Federal Research Division of the United States, the war was inconclusive militarily.[9] The war was militarily inconclusive; each side held prisoners and some territory belonging to the other.

The Pakistan Army considers itself to have achieved a victory because it simply insists and ignores the treaty of Tashkent by saying it was arranged by USSR, who managed to hold off significantly larger force attacking Pakistani territory at different points, which the PA did not expect and was not prepared or equipped for. Indian sources as well as neutral sources disagree and call the end result an Indian victory. All though Pakistan failed in gaining all of Kashmir, highly effective support from the Pakistan Air Force, which was unexpected, is often considered to have neutralized India's advantage in quantity of forces. The accurate artillery fire provided by the PA artillery units is also stated to have played a significant role.

An uprising against General Ayub Khan during 1968 and 1969 resulted in Ayub Khan relinquishing his office as President and Chief of Army Staff in favor of General Yahya Khan, who assumed power in 1969. 16 Division, 18 Division and 23 Division were raised at some point between 1966 and 1969 and 9 Division was re-raised during this period.

1969–1971

Main articles: 1971 Bangladesh atrocities, Operation Searchlight and Bangladesh Liberation War

During the rule of Yahya Khan, the people of East Pakistan protested against various political and economic disparities that had been imposed on them by West Pakistan and massive civil unrest broke out in East Pakistan. During operations against these rebels, called Operation Searchlight, a faction of the Pakistan Army under General Yahya Khan was responsible for the 1971 Bangladesh atrocities.[10] Beginning with the start of Operation Searchlight on 25 March 1971 and due to the Bangladesh Liberation War, there were numerous human rights abuses in East Pakistan (now Bangladesh) perpetrated by the Pakistan Army, with support from local political and religious militias, especially against Hindus.[11][12] Time reported a high ranking U.S. official as saying "It is the most incredible, calculated thing since the days of the Nazis in Poland."[13]

The original plan envisioned taking control of the major cities on 26 March 1971, and then eliminating all opposition, political or military,[14] within one month. The prolonged Bengali resistance was not anticipated by Pakistani planners.[15] The main phase of Operation Searchlight ended with the fall of the last major town in Bengali hands in the mid of May.

Soon heavy fighting broke out between Pakistani Army and Indian-backed Bengali freedom fighters, in this period the Pakistan Army killed estimated 3 million Bengali people. In December 1971. Pakistan attacked India's western air based that started the Pakistan India War of 1971 (also called the Bangladesh Liberation War). In eastern theater Pakistan Army was decimated by Indian Army and Bengali freedom fighters while in west front Pakistan Army was defeated in battles of Basanter and Longewalla.

On 16 December 1971, Lt. Gen A. A. K. Niazi, CO of Pakistan Army forces located in East Pakistan signed the Instrument of Surrender. Over 93,000 Pakistani troops surrendered to the Indian forces, making it the largest surrender since World War II.

In 1997 R. J. Rummel published a book, available on the web, called "Statistics of Democide: Genocide and Mass Murder Since 1900", In Chapter 8 called "Statistics Of Pakistan's Democide Estimates, Calculations, And Sources" he looks at the 1971 Bangladesh Liberation War. Rummel wrote:

In East Pakistan (now Bangladesh) [the President of Pakistan, General Agha Mohammed Yahya Khan, and his top generals] also planned to murder its Bengali intellectual, cultural, and political elite. They also planned to indiscriminately murder hundreds of thousands of its Hindus and drive the rest into India. And they planned to destroy its economic base to insure that it would be subordinate to West Pakistan for at least a generation to come. This plan may be perceived as genocide.[16]

According to Maj. (Retd.) Agha Humayun Amin, Pakistan Army high command commanders had not seriously considered an Indian invasion of East Pakistan until December 1971 because it was presumed that the Indian military would not risk Chinese or U.S. intervention. Maj Mazhar states that the PA's senior command failed to realise that the Chinese would be unable to intervene during the winter months of November to December 1971 period due to snowbound Himalayan passes and the U.S. had not made any real effort to persuade India against attacking East Pakistan.[17]

1971–1977

A Pakistan International Airlines flight was sent to fetch Zulfikar Ali Bhutto from New York, who at that time was presenting Pakistan's case before the United Nations Security Council on the East Pakistan Crises. Bhutto returned home on 18 December 1971. On 20 December, he was taken to the President House in Rawalpindi where he took over two positions from Yahya Khan, one as President and the other as Chief Martial Law Administrator. Thus he was the first civilian Chief Martial Law Administrator of the Pakistan.

1977–1999


In 1977 a coup was staged by General Zia ul-Haq and the government was overthrown. This led to the hanging of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto after he was tried and proclaimed guilty of conspiracy of murdering a politician named Kasuri by Zia's handpicked judges. Zia reneged on his promise of holding elections within 90 days and ruled as a military dictator until his death in an air crash in 1988. General Mohammad Iqbal Khan served as a joint chief from 1980 to 1984 and was the Chief Martial Law Officer during that time.

In the mid-1970s the Pakistan Army was involved in fighting an uprising in Balochistan. Various Balochi factions, some with the oblique support of the USSR, wanted independence or at least greater provincial rights. The rebellion was put down on the behest of the Bhutto government but the Army suffered heavy casualties. After Bhutto was deposed, the province returned to normalcy under General Rahimuddin.

In the 1980s, Pakistani Armed Forces co-operated with the United States to provide arms, ammunition and intelligence assistance to Afghanistani freedom fighters who were fighting the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan.

During the 1st Gulf War Pakistan Army contributed troops for the defence of Saudi Arabia against possible Iraqi retaliation. Although Pakistan Army saw few actions, their performance was remarkable. The 153 Lt AirDefence (GM/SP) Regiment deployed in Tabuk scored multiple hits on number of Iraqi Scuds and provided round the clock Air Defence protection to Saudi Troops in the Area.

1999–present


In October 1999, after the Kargil Conflict ended with the unconditional withdrawal of the Pakistani forces from the Indian controlled peaks, the Pakistan Army overthrew a democratically elected government for the fourth time, resulting in additional sanctions being applied against Pakistan, leading to General Pervez Musharraf coming to power in a bloodless coup. However, this time Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif sacked Musharraf when he was on his way to Pakistan from Colombo. He dismissed the Army Chief and appointed General Ziauddin Butt as Army Chief when Musarraf's plane was in the air. That was not enough, the plane was not allowed to land at the Karachi Airport and barricades were erected on the runway. The corps commanders acted swiftly across Pakistan, particularly in Karachi and Islamabad. Brigadiar Muzaffar Usmani took control of Karachi Airport and arrested the Inspector General of Sind Police, Rana Maqbool Ahmed. Musharraf stepped down as President in August 2008. On 30 July 2009, the Pakistan Supreme Court ruled that Musharraf's imposition of Emergency Rule in 2007 was unconstitutional.[18]

After the September 11 attacks in the United States, Pakistan joined the US-led War on Terror and helped the United States armed forces by severing ties with the Taliban and immediately deploying 72,000 troops along Pakistan's western border to capture or kill Taliban and al-Qaida militants fleeing from Afghanistan. On the north western front, Pakistan initially garrisoned its troops in military bases and forts in the tribal areas. In May 2004 clashes erupted between the Pakistani troops and al-Qaeda's and other militants joined by local rebels and pro-Taliban forces. However, the offensive was poorly coordinated and the Pakistan Army suffered heavy casualties, while public support for the attack quickly evaporated. After a two-year conflict from 2004 until 2006, the Pakistani military negotiated a ceasefire with the tribesmen from the region in which they pledged to hunt down al-Qaeda members, stop the Talibanisation of the region and stop attacks in Afghanistan and Pakistan. However, the militants did not hold up their end of the bargain and began to regroup and rebuild their strength from the previous two years of conflict.

Militants took over the Lal Masjid in Islamabad. After a six-month standoff fighting erupted again in July 2007 when the Pakistani military decided to use force to end the Lal Masjid threat. Once the operation ended, the newly formed Pakistani Taliban, an umbrella group of all militants based in FATA, vowed revenge and launched a wave of attacks and suicide bombings which erupted all over North-West Pakistan and major Pakistani cities, including Karachi, throughout 2007.

The militants then expanded their base of operations and moved into the neighbouring Swat Valley, where they imposed Sharia law. The Pakistan Army launched an offensive to re-take the Swat Valley in 2007, but was unable to clear it of the militants who had fled into the mountains and waited for them to leave before taking over the valley again. The militants then launched another wave of terrorist attacks inside Pakistan. The Pakistani government and military tried another peace deal with the militants in Swat Valley in 2008. This was roundly criticised in the West as abdicating to the militants. After initially pledging to lay down their arms if Sharia Law was implemented, the Pakistani Taliban subsequently used the Swat Valley as a springboard to launch further attacks into neighbouring regions, reaching to within 60 kilometres (37 mi) of Islamabad.

Public opinion then turned decisively against the Taliban terrorists. This opinion was highlighted following the release of a video showing the flogging of a girl by the Pakistani Taliban in Swat Valley. Similar events and terrorist attacks finally forced the Pakistan Army to launch a decisive attack against the Taliban occupying Swat Valley in April 2009, after having received orders from the political leadership.[19] After heavy fighting the Swat Valley was largely pacified by July 2009, although isolated pockets of Taliban remained in the area.

The next phase of Pakistan Army's offensive was the formidable Waziristan region. A US drone attack killed the leader of the Taliban, Baitullah Mehsud, in August. A power struggle engulfed the Taliban during September, but by October a new leader had emerged, Hakimullah Mehsud. Under his leadership, the Taliban launched another wave of terrorist attacks throughout Pakistan, killing hundreds of people. After a few weeks of air strikes, artillery and mortar attacks, 30,000 troops moved on South Waziristan, in a three pronged attack. The Pakistan Army re-took South Waziristan and is currently thinking of expanding the campaign to North Waziristan.

On April 2012 an avalanche struck the 6th Northern Light Infantry Battalion headquarters in Ghyari sector of Siachen, entrapping 135 soldiers.[20]

UN Peacekeeping Missions

In the wake of the new world power equilibrium a more complex security environment has emerged. It is characterised by growing national power politics and state implosions which have necessitated involvement of the United Nations peace keeping forces for conflict resolution.

The United Nations has been undertaking peace keeping operations since its inception, but the need for employment of peace keeping forces has increased significantly since the Gulf War. In 1992 there were 11,000 Blue Berets deployed around the world, by the end of the year the figure rose to 52,000. Presently it exceeds 80,000 troops.

  • UN Operation in Congo (ONUC) 1960–1964
  • UN Security Force in New Guinea, West Irian (UNSF) 1962–1963
  • UN Yemen Observer Mission Yemen (UNYOM) 1963–1964
  • UN Transition Assistance Group in Namibia (UNTAG) 1989–1990
  • UN Iraq–Kuwait Observer Mission (UNIKOM) 1991–2003
  • UN Mission in Haiti (UNMIH) 1993–1996
  • UN Transitional Authority in Cambodia (UNTAC) 1992–1993
  • UN Operations in Somalia (UNOSOM) 1992–1995
  • UN Protection Forces in Bosnia (UNPROFOR) 1992–1995
  • UN Observer Mission for Rawanda (UNAMIR) 1993–1996
  • UN Verification Mission in Angola (UNAVEM III) 1995–1997
  • UN Transitional Administration for Eastern Slavonia (UNTAES) 1996–1997
  • UN Mission of Observers in Prevlaka (UNMOP) 1996–2002
  • UN Assistance Mission in Sierra Leone (UNAMSIL) 2001–2005
  • UN Transitional Administration in East Timor (UNTAET) 1999-to-date

The table below shows the current deployment of Pakistani Forces in UN Peacekeeping missions.

Start of operation Name of Operation Location Conflict Contribution
1999 United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO) Democratic Republic of the Congo Democratic Republic of Congo Second Congo War 3,556 Troops.[21]
2003 United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) Liberia Liberia Second Liberian Civil War 2,741 Troops.[21]
2004 United Nations Operation in Burundi ONUB Burundi Burundi Burundi Civil War 1,185 Troops.[21]
2004 United Nations Operation in Côte d'Ivoire (UNOCI) Ivory Coast Côte d'Ivoire Civil war in Côte d'Ivoire 1,145 Troops.[21]
2005 United Nations Mission in the Sudan (UNMIS) Sudan Sudan Second Sudanese Civil War 1,542 Troops.[21]
Staff/Observers 191 Observers.[21]
  • The total amount of troops serving currently in peacekeeping missions is 10,173 (as of March 2007).

Organization

Pakistan Army
Leadership
Chief of Army Staff
Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee
Organisation and Components
Structure of the Pakistan Army
Frontier Corps
Frontier Works Organisation
Special Service Group
Army Cantonment Board
Pakistan Armoured Corps
Installations
General Headquarters
Pakistan Military Academy
Command and Staff College
National Defence University
Personnel
Army Ranks of Pakistan
Pakistan Army Generals
Equipment
Modern equipment
History and Traditions
Military history of Pakistan
UN Peacekeeping Missions
Pakistan Army FC
Awards, Decorations and Badges
Awards and Decorations
Nishan-e-Haider

Command structure

The President of Pakistan is the civilian supreme commander of the Pakistan Armed Forces by statute, while the Prime Minister of Pakistan served as the Chief Executive of Pakistan Armed Forces, both people-elected civilians, Prime Minister and President, maintains the civilian control of the military. The Chief of the Army Staff (COAS), a four-star general, is the highest general officer (unless the four-star general is Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee), a field and operational commander as well as a highest army four-star general officer, directs the non-combat and combatant operations from army combatant headquarters in Rawalpindi, near Islamabad. The Principal Staff Officers (PSO) assisting him in his duties at the Lieutenant-General level include a Chief of General Staff (CGS), under whom the Military Operations and Intelligence Directorates function; the Chief of Logistics Staff (CLS); the Adjutant General (AG); the Quarter-Master General (QMG); the Inspector General of Training and Evaluation (IGT and E); the Military Secretary (MS); and the Engineer-in-Chief, a top army topographer. A major reorganisation in GHQ was done in September 2008 under General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, when two new PSO positions were introduced: the Inspector General Arms and the Inspector General Communications and IT, thus raising the number of PSO's to eight.[22]

The headquarters function also includes the Judge Advocate General (JAG), and the Comptroller of Civilian Personnel, the Engineer-in-Chief of the Corps of Engineers who is also head of Military Engineering Service (MES), all of them also report to the Chief of the Army Staff. Although most of the officer corps were generally Muslim by the 1970s, there were still serving Christian officers the highest rank being attained by Major General Julian Peter who served as the General Officer Commanding of a Division and as general staff officer at Army Headquarters up-till 2006.

Commissioned officers rank

Main article: Army ranks of Pakistan

The rank structure is patterned on the British Army model. It consists of commissioned officers, non-commissioned officers and the junior commissioned officers.

Commissioned Officers Ranks of the Pakistan Army
Pay grade O-10 O-9 O-8 O-7 O-6 O-5 O-4 O-3 O-2 O-1
Insignia
Title General Lieutenant-General Major-General Brigadier Colonel Lieutenant-Colonel Major Captain Lieutenant Second Lieutenant
Abbreviation Gen LGen MGen Brig Col LCol Maj Capt Lt SLt
NATO Code OF-10 OF-9 OF-8 OF-7 OF-6 OF-5 OF-4 OF-3 OF-2 OF-1
Rank Hierarchy 4-star General 3-star General 2-star General 1-star Officer