Category Archives: International Security

Pakistan : Rule of Law through Technology Oriented Policing

This is English Version of an analysis published on BBC URDU ONLINE SERVICE by the Author. 

According to prevalent thinking of security officials, deployment of maximum number of security officials is an indicator of quality of protection of persons and premises in urban spaces. Emphasis is on visible security measures to deter the assailants and saboteurs. There is another social dimension to this visibility because in our society presence of uniformed and armed personnel with a person is correlated with stature and power one holds in the higher echelons. Moreover, fact that there is need to respond any response to threats will still in human form, it is considered economical to rely on the traditional deployment of security officials for all purposes. In some cases, CCTV cameras are also used in addition to physical deployment but the response remains primarily through human resources with little value addition by technology.

There may be many other factors behind display of arms and armed guards but there is miniscule evidence that these measures unsupported by additional intelligence sources have helped in thwarting attacks on important personalities and on key locations. It is required, therefore, to think about shifting the focus from visible paraphernalia to invisible measures for ensuring security in urban settings.

In many big cities of the world like London, Glasgow, New York, Mexico, Nairobi, Dubai and Qatar, it is considered to replace human foot print on streets with digital eyes and ears through an integrated command and control system. It is not a conventional approach prevalent in most of the countries of the world as it calls for high investments as well as application of highly advanced technology to come up with a virtual security information collection mechanism. But if we think strategically, the future belongs to Technology Oriented Policing (TOP) paradigm.

This shift is due to fiver factors. First, increasing rate of urbanization and spatial extensions of cities making it difficult to monitor the public spaces through only human resources. Application of cameras and allied applications at vintage points not only broadens the field of view but also reduces the cost and risks of permanent presence of security officials in any place. Second, automation of surveillance mechanisms reduces variations of human application of law and takes out individual discretions out of the equation. Electronic devices installed on public places ensure certainty of a uniform action against all and sundry. For example issuance of e-challan tickets of traffic violations issued to every violator, regardless of his social status and nuisance in the society and size and brand of the vehicle! Third, early information available to law enforcement agent through integrated technological solution enables them to act in more safe and confidant manner against any potential threat. Every police officer and first responder is equipped with mobile applications on smart phones displaying details of vehicles and persons manifesting suspicious behaviour. Fourth, this invisible security mechanism is not completely run by machines. Smarter people use smart phones better. Police officers running the centralised integrated command, control and communication centres are not only more qualified but also imparted better training to handle complex situations in metropolitan cities. Quality of decision-making and resource allocation also improves by deputing senior and responsible decision makers in the centre rather on the ground for addressing the galleries only. Lastly, by improving the monitoring mechanism through electronic eyes and recording of all events in electronic gazetteers accountability of all police officers and public response increases many folds. Major beneficiary of this electronic evidence are investigators, prosecution departments and courts. It will help them in fixing the responsibility through face recognition capacity and giving a verdict which even defence lawyers cannot question. Thus TOP becomes decisive intervention in the justice sector and all urban population becomes beneficiary.

For cost benefit analysis, the initial high costs would be justified by four indicators, i.e. 1. Reduction in crimes, 2. Reduction in traffic casualties 3. Increase in revenue through zero tolerance on traffic violations and 4. Satisfaction of the public won through transparency, accountability and good governance in civilian security sector. Whereas first three can be measured by comparing results in short time frame but last and most important indicator cannot be ensured without committed response by the law enforcement agencies, in this case, Police.

This public trust is not easy to achieve due to many risks involved in implementing this paradigm of invisible security to develop safe cities in Pakistan. In developed countries civilian security apparatus is designed, mostly, in sync with requirements of urban development, population planning and economic growth framework but it is not happening here. Scarcity of resources, despite positive economic development evidenced by Forbs and Times remains a challenge. The biggest challenge, however, remains the police response to this advanced technology intervention e.g. in Islamabad and Lahore Safe Cities Projects. The way to do business changes dramatically and unless there is huge effort of change management it becomes an unbridgeable chasm. Equally important and in much bigger in scale, is cooperation of public. People are bosses and bosses do not like surprises! Preparing people for even better services require a well thought out strategy and action plan. Here comes role of Media and Courts. Media plays positive role by informing them about developments but also forms public opinion in favour of such fundamental changes which require modification of public behaviour on traffic signals and in law and order situations. Courts have to respond positively for admission of electronic evidence and bar councils are also partner to defend the cases on evidence rather than conventional oral accounts of witnesses, accused and complainants. If these stakeholders do not support the whole scheme of things then they may become spoilers.

Of course there is always a counter narrative and actors who can turn into spoilers if their concerns are not addressed or if they are not taken on board. Most evident question: why cities only? Will it not draw sharper lines between urban and rural areas? One should be mindful that TOP have limitations because it is an expensive solution and scaling it up is not envisaged even in developed cities like London. In some cases TOP is not as flexible and as intelligent as a human resource can be. Other key factor will be the way the system is being utilised. It will be defeating the purpose of invisible security if there are no active response teams of Police to nab the violators of laws or if lawyers tried to question the unquestionable electronic evidence or if courts did not convict the culprits due to other mitigating circumstances. Changing public behaviour and improving road safety are other determinants for positive outcome in country like Pakistan where such interventions are in the offing.

At the moment, there is strong political will to implement TOP in the form of Punjab Police Integrated Command, Control and Communication Centre (PPIC4) project Lahore. Punjab Safe Cities Authority is established to develop PPIC4s for at least five major cities i.e. Multan, Faisalabad, Gujranwala, Rawalpindi and Lahore. This is biggest intervention by the Chief Minister Punjab to change Police Culture not only in Punjab but also in Pakistan. TOP is the future of Punjab Police.

Media has the key role to shape the public opinion to support the positive steps but Media cannot change the reality on the ground. Real success depends upon a number of factors: phenomenal leadership both at operational and political level; meticulous implementation by Police as well as support extended by other public departments. Public response to this apocalyptic change is yet to be seen. There is a big question for public: are you ready to support this stride towards a change in Police Culture by following the rule of law through technology?

Akbar Nasir Khan : COO Punjab Safe Cities Authority (


Radicalisation in the Police

Radicalisation is defined as favouring revolutionary means for social change. The question is: what constitutes in the mind of an individual the notion of inevitability of social change and employing violent means for its realisation? Three factors influence an individual’s behaviour – internal social environment, external social interaction and international polarity system. The internal social environment encompasses the immediate social setup wherein an individual thrives and receives primary education or learning. The external social interaction covers all secondary actors who frequently meet the individual and discuss issues of mutual concern. It may also cover organisational sub-culture, which constantly influences a person during working hours. International polarity, on the other hand, is defined as the global system of governance whose parameters are set by leading developed countries and implemented across the globe. An individual gets the idea of the international polarity system through social media, external social interaction or electronic and print mass communication means. These three factors have a different impact on an individual’s radicalisation process – irrespective of his or her socio-cultural background. The radicalised individual looks for an opportunity to react at times violently and at times non-violently. These reactions get impetus due to a lose governing infrastructure and passive social control in a country or region. In regimented organisations individuals are usually subjected to disciplined lives. However, as lawlessness increases and the state loses its legitimacy of monopoly of control over violence the chances of radicalisation among members of regimented organisations increase many fold. Secondly, internal organisational dysfunctionality engenders opportunities for the radicalized members to exhibit their expressions forcefully. Such action was observed when Mumtaz Qadri, an Elite qualified Punjab Police employee, officially deputed on the security duty of the governor of Punjab, attacked and killed his benefactor in January 2011 in Islamabad despite his radicalised behaviour being reported to his superiors before the incident. Similarly, investigation reports on a number of terror attacks on law-enforcement agencies (LEAs) reveal that terrorists were abetted by insiders in carrying out such deadly acts. The army has tried to mitigate the internal threat through different reforms focusing on junior officers’ welfare, enhancing officer-subordinate communication frequency and enforcing strict discipline in all ranks. Unfortunately, such mechanisms have not been adopted in police organisations in Pakistan. Resultantly, chances of radicalisation have increased in the police force; this can dent the government’s resolve to fight terrorism. After the Mumtaz Qadri episode, psychologists were hired in Punjab to determine the mental and physical suitability of police officials for sensitive security duties. Nearly, 6291 police force members underwent psychological profiling; 1342 were verified, 17 were declared unsuitable for security duties and 4949 profiles are still pending with authorities. The practice of psychological profiling has been disrupted in 2015, leaving more than 100,000 police personnel without any official record formulation on mental stability. Close monitoring is urgently required with high frequency of officer-subordinate interactions so that the clear and precise picture of each force member can be documented. The resource distribution is also lopsided in the police department wherein 85 percent budget is consumed on pay and allowances. The amount available for force welfare is so small that no meaningful change can be envisaged in force outlook within a span of few years. In the Khyber Pakhtunkwa Police Department, which has a total strength of about 75,000, a scanning programme has been designed which has so far tested 35,000 police personnel. The points of scanning police officials include past history, family backgrounds, tribal affiliations, jihadi participation, Afghanistan tours, criminal records and income sources. These benchmarks however are not able to pinpoint the inclination towards radicalisation in an official. This is one of the reasons why only a hundred individuals have been earmarked as radicals who are currently being subjected to a thorough probe before any final decision can be taken about their future. So far not a single official has been dismissed on account of being declared a radical person in the KP police force. Nonetheless, no model exists for radicalisation detection in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. In the Punjab Police Department, the psychological analysis is principally based on detecting mental equilibrium and extremist inclination during a written exercise for police officials. We have devised a de-radicalisation model but we lack a radicalisation detection mechanism for probable phasing out of suspected officials during the scanning process. The radicalisation mechanism should be based on detecting the social, ideological, political, cultural and religious inclinations of an individual. The mechanism should hinge upon the following six factors. First, the self-identification of an individual be maintained as well as how s/he defines his/her character – for example, whether an individual associates with a religious figure or defines his character in a neutral way. If the individual likes a particular national or international leader then we need to see the key characteristics of that leader. Second, how does the individual see himself vis-a-vis the whole society? Does he isolate himself or negate social alienation? Does the person express feelings for or against the government? Are there any changes in personal narratives or not? Third, the mode of social interaction and kind of social capital that an individual enjoys while living under a peculiar socio-cultural environment must be part of the radicalisation detection method. If a person has the knack of getting influenced easily and has large religious capital then s/he must be categorised carefully leading to expulsion. Fourth, whether the individual is emotionally stable or not sends alert signals on many counts including static or mobile duty suitability and VVIP protection protocol assignment deployment. Fifth, does an individual have any visible ties with tribes who are belligerent or antithetical to government policies? Does the official belong to a group having nexus with terror operators or not? Does the individual bear any connections with cross-border insurgents or not? Does the person under review have a high percentage of unpredictable behaviour when subjected to demanding situations or not? These guidelines must fit into the radicalisation model effectively. Lastly, does the person know how to use digital-electronic devices or not? The more evasive and indirect the questions encompassing all the indicators, the more precise the data compilation on radicalisation in police organisations. It is time to introduce these measures in police organisations otherwise police field formations will not be able to hold out a cleared area.

Faisal Ali Raja Thursday, July 09, 2015

The writer is in the police service of Pakistan. Email:

ISIS: Security Challenges to Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

The Islamic State represents a logical continuation of al Qaeda that triggered both a sense of Islamic power and shaped the United States and its allies into a threat to Islam. It has created a military and political framework to exploit the situation that al Qaeda created. Its military operations have been impressive and its fighters’ demonstrate enormous flexibility in the battlefield.

The fall of the Soviet Union has set in motion the events never contemplated before as apparent defeat of al Qaeda has opened the door for its logical successor, the Islamic State. The question at hand is whether the regional and international powers want to control the Islamic State or would prioritize their turf battles.

And at the heart of that question is the mystery of Islamic State ability to supply large numbers of forces, their war waging material and other crucial resources and the combat training. It is puzzling from where they get these resources and the training. In rare display of considerable flexibility on the battlefield, they have managed to take rebel forces in Syria and Iraq through a surprised large-scale offensive aimed at securing more territory along the Syria-Turkish border.

Mentioning of the Alawites in Syria is important, being a leading group fighting against Islamic States in the vicious Syrian civil war along with Free Syrian Army, Kurdish People’s Protection Units, Euphrates Volcano Outfit and Syrian rebel and Kurdish forces. They have suffered maximum losses compared to any other group. More than 70,000 young Alawite have been killed and 120,000 are wounded. Another 10,000 are still unaccounted for. This indicates the complexity of crisis and conflict against Islamic States.

The defeat of Islamic States being an international threat requires regional and international rebalancing to increasingly devote their attention and resources to fight the Islamic State, rather than prioritizing battles with each other. The role of regional countries is critical, particularly surrounding Levant to include two non-Arab states of Iran and Turkey and one Arab power of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

These countries have dealt the threat of Islamic States differently that Islamic States took advantage of its war on Shiite dissent and accordingly has prioritized the defense of its core supply lines, arranged equipment and much-needed recruits and strategically they demonstrate flexibility in its offensive operations.

Iran supports Iraqi Shiites and al Assad government, so that Islamic State does not hold the power in Damascus and Baghdad and could threaten Iran again. The Turkey obviously is hostile towards al Assad regime and many commenters believe that it sees the Islamic State as less of a threat than al Assad. While the Turkish government denies such charges, but rumors of alleged shipments of weaponry to unknown parties in Syria by the Turkish intelligence was a dominant theme in Turkey’s recent elections. However, Turkey expects the Islamic State to be defeated by the United States and it gains politically in Syria.

The Iranian nuclear program is less important to the Americans than collaboration with Iran against the Islamic State. The US and allies contemplate that Islamic State threatens Israel and western bloc with its ideology, particularly if it spreads to Palestine and across. US and western alliance seem ready to accommodate with past Arab rival al Assad being less dangerous than the Islamic State.

The Islamic State poses an existential threat to Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for a transnational Islamic movement. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, along with some other Gulf Cooperation Council members and Jordan, want to contain Islamic State transnationalism without conceding the ground to the Shiites in Iraq and Syria.

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and other Gulf countries have forged an air capability used in Yemen that might be used elsewhere if needed, but a balance and mindset between political secular Islam bridging fault line between Sunni versus Shiite, and other complex and interacting factions is far from forging meaningful alliance. This however gives advantage Islamic States.

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is increasingly surrounded by sectarian turmoil threatened by Islamic States that can affect the kingdom’s security and political culture.  The Kingdom in the south has poverty-stricken and sectarian divided Yemen, which seems to have joined Somalia as a failed state adjacent the southern approaches to the Red Sea (and Suez).  To the north, Syria and Iraq are awash in sectarian violence as Islamic States terrorists seek to establish a caliphate.

The integrity of Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is vital for greater stability of Muslim World and fight against Islamic States due to some obvious reasons: The Kingdom’s landmass is bigger than the other States of Gulf, stretching from the Persian Gulf to the Red Sea, which is mostly empty and difficult to defend against creeping terrorists’ network of networks as Kingdom has sparse population, which is about 80% is concentrated in three urban centers.

Given the geographical complexity, the Kingdom’s security concern are due to spillover effects of terrorism, proxies, concerns over spread of weapons of mass destruction (WMD), sustaining and maintaining oil related infrastructure and industry and threat of rebellion and aggression erupting from the neighbors.

The Kingdom has to play a critical role in fight against Islamic States and other proxies responsible for regional insecurity. Therefore, Kingdom must accord priority to domestic and regional internal challenges and revisit its own national internal security strategies in order to institutionalize its own integral and regional internal security strategic initiatives to consolidate its place as the regional Arab leader and help its neighbors fight for stability and prepare upcoming challenges both outside its borders and from within.

Syed Wajid Ali    ISIS Security Challenges to KSA

The Peril of Civil War in Yemen

The rebellion erupted in northern Yemen by Houthi insurgents about ten years ago has turned to be a full-fledged civil war. From its covert phases it is now an open rebellion involving Saudi Arabia and a coalition of Gulf States including Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates participating against Houthi insurgents militarily. The Houthi rebellion is named after a dissident cleric Hussein Badreddin al-Houthi, head of shia Zaidi branch who died leading a conflict in Northern Yemen in 2004.
The rebellion is motivated over community’s discontent over government’s discrimination and continued aggression against the group. The slogan of defending Houthi community picked momentum in various stages since 2004 till conflict reached from neighbouring governorates of Hajjah, ‘Amran, al-Jawf and the Saudi province of Jizan to Yemeni capital Sanaa.
Yemen has an area of about 528,000 square km with a population of 26 million and rebels control most area after bringing the intense fighting around the strategic Gulf of Aden after fall of capitol to Houthi.
The violence has become norm across Yemen motivating militias to commit atrocities and still get away from accountability. This has given flip to other freedom movements in Dhamar, Hudaydah, Taiz and barren eastern Yemen. The government blames Iranian backing of Houthis to overthrow government, while rebels accuse Saudi Arabia and US supporting the Yemeni government in massacre of its community.
The idea of years long selling of false hope of political reality to Yemenis by international community has created conflicts rather than peace and tranquility. The UN declared “Yemen as a transitional model” which indeed has slipped further into the abyss of turmoil, bringing more violence than peace, tarnishing democracy, social justice and cohesion.
Saudi Arabia faces a complex, uncertain, and ever-changing regional landscape demanding defending the northern and southern borders and surrounding sea-lanes and internal security against potential tensions and aggressions that could spill across state lines at regional level, where terrorist cells have emerged in the neighborhood to fill power vacuum.
Saudi Arabia finds itself in serious security situation with ingress of revolt close to its province of Jizan, leaving no option to quell the insurgency in the formatting stages. Saudi Arabia and a coalition of regional Gulf States also share similar security threats, while US wants to pin down suspected hide-outs of Al Qaeda within its borders. The Saudi coalition prefers to come out of the Yemini crisis with installation of a favorable Sunni government willing to align itself with Saudi Arabia, a U.S. ally, than with Iran.
In the past Houthi insurgents blamed US-Saudi air force’s massacre of citizens in the north of Yemen and other populated areas where markets, refugee camps and villages were targeted in the garb. It is therefore unlikely that intervention would lead quickly to the creation of a favorable government.
The Middle East has been a battlefield of ad hoc stability that enabled Iran to project its power. Iran indeed is taking advantage of short-term tactical decisions by conflictual states in the strategic expansion of conflict from Lebanon, Iraq, Syria, and now Yemen.
Iran on other hand is blamed of benefiting from instability in neighboring countries by clandestinely invest in local groups that can serve as proxies for its interests, capable of fighting not only regional governments but also world powers such as the U.S. and its Western allies. The price of oil would probably rise as a consequence, which would also serve the Iranian interests.
The country could well become the battleground for an international proxy war in a way the world hasn’t seen since Vietnam. In addition, fundamentalists ISIS and Al Qaeda-backed groups would view U.S. intervention as a call to arms and would capitalize on the instability and insecurity to advance their fight against the West.
The conflict is dominated by allegations and counter allegations to condense the scope of diplomacy and reconciliation. Countries that could have played a positive role are either alleged of their involvement or alegeding each other. Saudi Arabia alleges Iranian involvements in the insurgency of secretly supplying arms through its Red Sea coast and training of rebels in an Iranian-run camp across the Red Sea in Eritrea with active involvement of the members of Lebanon’s Iran-backed Hezbollah militia.
Iranians deny their involvement to make it difficult for independent observers to ascertain varsity of these accusations. Jordan alleged Saudis of deploying their commandos to fight alongside the Saudis in an offensive against Northern Jabal al-Al-Dukhan, located in Saudi territory south-west of Jizan at the border between Saudi Arabia and Yemen, but Saudis sent the Jordanian commandos to fight in Northern Yemen.
Morocco is alleged to have sent hundreds of elite fighters, mainly para-troopers trained in counter-insurgency operations to assist 2009-10 Saudi offensive in Jizan. Pakistan is also alleged of its special forces fighting in Yemeni counter insurgency operations in Sa’dah.
Though the conflict is being projected on sectarian lines, but in many ways it is a political. The events in Yemen and Iraq are not directly connected and essentially it remains power struggle between Iran and Saudi Arabia (and its Arab and western allies) for political power and influence in the region.
The Houthis are being identified Shia sect fighting non shia legitimate regime to gain support from the predominantly Sunni Arab population, and to lend legitimacy to its actions. The narrative that Shia population in Gulf States, Iraq and Syria backed by Iran and if by any chance it is replaced by Shi’a governments there would be a solid sea of Shi’ism from the confines of Pakistan to the Mediterranean is most dangerous dimension of the conflict and this fault line can be exploited.
These are defining moments in the history of Pakistan. The emerging alliance against Houthi insurgents, ISIS and global terrorism will spread in the region and remaining nonaligned would not be an option. This will recount difficulties like Pakistan’s previous alliances and most states consumed by internal challenges would pursue integration of Pakistan into the gambit.
Pakistan faces difficult situation, where it has no choice than committing politically, militarily and morally to Saudi Arabia and regional alliance. It will be difficult to ignore legitimate international alliance against sectarian rebels of the fear of possible internal sectarian strife back home. Perhaps this is first time that Saudi led alliance is relying within Muslim and seeks a critical role of Pakistan alongside Egypt and Turkey. In return it gives Pakistan an opportunity to build strategic alliance and regain its influence lost during war on terror.
“May you live in interesting times” is taken to be an old Chinese curse. What at first sight appears to be a blessing; the proverb is to underline the risks over the opportunities while living in interesting times. Joining or leaving the alliance is interesting time for Pakistan. Pakistan should hope to play important role in the Unified Military Force of Muslim countries and Muslim Union on the lines of NATO and EU. Strategic decisions are to be taken within strategic timeframe otherwise it is lost opportunity. Pakistan has to commit militarily in this complex security landscape under some umbrella despite a possibility of being embroiled in a diverse array of internal challenges.

Wajid Ali

Why terrorism in Pakistan is seen indifferently by outside world? 

“In post Cherlie Hebdo incident of January 07, 2015 where twelve persons were killed, eighty-three states from Albania to Vietnam condemned the attack[1]. Five major international organisations from OIC to United Nations expressed solidarity with the victims[2]. More than thirty heads of the states of all races, religions and colours participated in an open rally on the streets of Paris to say that they were against terrorism[3]. This was all possible due to opinion expressed by thousands of people who came out on same day of attacks to condemn the incident by their active but peaceful gathering. As it was an attack on journalists so world press was also united and some called it an attack on western civilization[4]. Anti Pakistan lobbies do not miss any chance to malign Pakistan. Fareed Zakriya, an Indian born American journalist said that Pakistani Prime Minister has not condemned the attack, as he should have[5]. However, it was not all that neat. Some fifty cases were registered where Muslims in France were attacked merely due to their faith[6].

When 9/11 took place, urgency was created. NCTC and Homeland Security were the outcome of hectic exercises to develop a response mechanism. In UK, India, Canada and many other countries reviewed their contingency plans and started capacity building programs of civilian and military institutions. Contrary to this, attack on APS Peshawar on December 16, 2014 did not generate same response despite hundred and fifty nine casualties, most of them children. There were very few public demonstrations in the country. Sixty three states issued statements. Nationally all political parties condemned the incident and a consensus seemed to emerge against terrorism. Even Al Qaida and Afghan Taliban condemned the attack on innocent children[7]. However, the momentum built by media and action promised by the government were not realised due to poor implementation. Delays in implementation of NAP and ambivalence to take dangerous yet decisive actions by LEAs are diluting the intent behind NAP. Divergent interests of the state institutions preventing integrated response. Moreover, due to past policies of the state and poor governance, Pakistan does not enjoy good reputation in the international community for fighting against terrorism.

However, internationally, terrorism is not the biggest reason of human fatalities. Diseases and traffic incidents cause more casualties than terrorism in conflict free zones[8]. Some experts believe that real reason of exaggeration of terrorist threats has more to do with domestic politics than with the true level of danger. ‘Whenever a terrorist incident occurs, politicians are quick to accuse incumbents of failing to do enough to prevent such actions’[9]. ‘And the media has every reason to join the chorus of doom and gloom: Even a small terrorist incident gets lots of people watching, listening, or reading online, especially when it occurs in Paris, London, or some other Western city’[10]. If seen through this lens, Charlie Hebdo incident response is somewhat exaggerated and it helps the terrorists to expand the war and recruit more people into their cause.

There are some differences in pre-incident and post-incident situations in Pakistan and rest of the world. Consider the Charlie Hebdo case or very recent Chapel Hill shooting in North Carolina USA where three Muslims are being killed by one person[11]. In post incident scenario, firstly, police deployment is adequate and professional handling of crime scene in visible through controlled access granted to Media. Media handling of Police is skilful and images of crime scene are not available for every one. This helps in minimising the visibility of destruction, which is highly desired by the terrorists but not by the state as it affects the morale of forces and the public.

Secondly, pre-incident work done by law enforcement and intelligence agencies helps them in timely investigation and identification of the suspects. This rapid analysis and identification of the culprits restores the confidence of the public on their security apparatus. This also results in shifting the focus from victims to accused and people come forward to help the LEAs to achieve their target. Urgency is created and all efforts are integrated to book the criminals. However, the cooperation by public depends upon relationship of between the LEAs and the public cultivated by service delivery rather for transactional motives to solve the crime riddle.

Thirdly, in almost all cases, civilian law enforcement officers come forward and nowhere intelligence agencies or military unduly interact with Media. Similarly, Special armed forces or Gendarmerie are deployed for a short time to demonstrate people highest level of security as confidence building measure but they are not called in for longer terms for strategic reasons. Media handling by only LEAs prevents contradictory information provided by various agencies.

Fourthly, threat assessments for local and foreign population, media and dignitaries are also issued to regulate their movements and share information. In Pakistan there is lack of timely coordination and cooperation with local and foreign media. For this information, foreign diplomats and police advisors cultivate relationships with intelligence agencies to remain informed about potential threats or develop their in house programs for coming to such conclusions.

Most of the time, one terrorist group or the other accepts responsibility of attack. In addition most common modus operandi is suicide attack. Therefore, terrorist is also wiped out in the incident. So identification issue is over. No action or slow action taken against the network of terrorists results in mounting mistrust of the people against the state institutions particularly Police and politicians – the easy targets. It is also true that international Media and opinion makers has a negative bias against Pakistan and security institutions.

Hence, due to poor Media engagement strategy, slow action by Police and over action by Army and Rangers, remains on the wrong side of the media and they create sensation for their business development. Lack of political stability and ambivalent stance on terrorism and past history of terrorism incidents give anti Pakistan lobbyists reasons to sharpen their criticism. Even in cases where there are no links of Pakistan they find grounds to attack Pakistan for their mercantile interests and ideological leanings.

‘In other words, the keys to success are not bellicose speeches, mass marches, wars on terror, or continued military interventions throughout the [country]. The key is calm resolution and conscious efforts to build resiliency at home. Tragedies will occur from time to time, but they cannot alter our way of life unless we allow them to do so. Terrorists of all sorts remain too weak to impose their will upon us, which means we always have the freedom to decide how to react to the danger they pose. We will be fools indeed if we allow the modest threat they pose to scare us into doing something foolish or, worse still, into abandoning the core principles of a free society’[12]. Core principles of a pluralistic society of Pakistan are rule of law, equality and justice for all.”



[3] Unity Rally for Paris Shootings, Jan 11, 2015

[4] BBC News January 08, 2015,

[5] Fareed Zakriay on Paris Attacks, F. World, Jan 09, 2015

[6] RT News, January 13, 2015,


[8] Conflict affected zones include Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia, Pakistan, Libya


[10] Walt, Stephan, Think before you March, Foreign Policy, January 16, 2015


[12] Walt, Stephan, Think before you March, Foreign Policy, January 16, 2015 “