Pakistan's obsession over parity with India

Discussion in 'Politics & Society' started by Dark_Prince, Feb 7, 2010.

  1. Dark_Prince

    Dark_Prince Regular Member

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    Pakistan's obsession over parity with India


    Toronto, ON, Canada, — India, with its 1.1 billion population, US$1.2 trillion economy – equivalent to US$3.5 trillion in purchasing power parity – and US$28 billion in annual defense expenditures, can afford to do a lot more in economic, political and military terms than Pakistan, with its 175 million population, US$445 billion PPP economy and US$8 billion in annual defense expenditures. There is also US$2 billion in annual aid provided by the United States.
    Yet Pakistan never ceases to seek parity with India in all spheres.

    Pakistan’s call for parity with India has brought it good results with a benevolent United States. From 1954 to 1964, the United States fulfilled every Pakistani demand for arms in a vain effort to contain the former Soviet Union. From 1979 to 1987, when the Soviets invaded Afghanistan, Pakistan not only managed to equal India’s military strength but also stole nuclear weapons secrets, which went largely unchecked.

    Pakistan’s unequivocal quest for arms came to a sudden end when U.S. Senator Larry Pressler checked it against a law that prohibited arms export to Pakistan. This happened because the U.S. government obtained conclusive evidence that Pakistan had completed building a uranium enrichment facility and was exporting nuclear technology.

    But the ban on arms shipments lasted only 10 years. After the 9/11 terror attacks, Pakistan was back in the good books of the United States. With Pressler’s amendment repealed, Pakistan was again pampered with U.S. arms as well as missile technology and arms from China.

    In the past 10 years, about US$9 billion worth of “aid” has flowed into Pakistan. Much of it was used to buy arms from countries like Ukraine, Sweden, France and China, and not from the United States, to safeguard against any new Pressler-type amendment that would restrict arms purchases.

    The Afghanistan war will continue for another decade or so in some form or other, until both parties get tired of rising deaths. This also means that U.S. arms will continue to flow into Pakistan. Under the pretext of fighting the Taliban and with U.S. money, Pakistan is procuring much sophisticated hardware like the latest F-16 fighters, night-vision equipped Russian-made Ukrainian tanks, as well as slightly inferior AWACS planes from Sweden, diesel submarines from France, technologically antiquated Chinese fighters and clandestine missiles from China and North Korea.

    The reason for all this is Pakistan’s obsession for parity with India.

    India is not sitting idle either. It is using its own money rather than foreign “aid” to buy a sophisticated array of arms from the United States, Israel, France, Russia and Britain. About US$25 billion worth of arms have already arrived in India in the past 10 years. Another US$55 billion are in various stages of procurement over the next five to seven years. In addition, it has its own locally manufactured military hardware. India can afford the expenditure because it has a strong economy to match its military hardware-purchasing spree.

    What will the state of affairs in India and Pakistan be in 10 years time? By 2020, India will have tripled its economy to US$3.5 trillion – US$10 trillion in PPP. Its defense budget will also have tripled to US$90 billion. In comparison, Pakistan will still be mired in the U.S.-sponsored war in the Afghanistan-Pakistan border, and most likely another war of its own making in Baluchistan. Its perpetual troublemaking in Kashmir will continue as usual.

    It is also possible that Pakistan’s conflict with Iran could escalate if religious crazed zealots in Pakistan make life for the Shiite population in the country miserable. So trouble is unlikely to end for Pakistan any time soon.

    That does not mean that India will be free from trouble. Pakistan-sponsored terrorism in Kashmir and other urban centers will continue. Also, Pakistan will cosponsor trouble in the northeast in addition to a belligerent China already looking to cause trouble in the region.

    Pakistan’s defense budget is also likely to remain at US$30 billion. Its economy will remain in bad shape until the army’s agenda of fighting India is dumped.

    Why there is this uncanny desire in Pakistan for parity with India? One reason is internal politics. In the past 60 years, Pakistani leaders have misled their population into believing that Muslims will rule once again from New Delhi and that one Pakistani soldier is equal to 30 Indian soldiers. But past experience – in Pakistan’s surrender in Dhaka in 1971, its eviction from Kargil in 1999 and its inability to capture Siachen Glacier from India – proves this wrong.

    Pakistan will not match India even if U.S. aid continues at the current level or even increases a bit. Much of its energy will be directed to contain trouble internally. In addition, its military, politics and economy, as long as they are Punjab-dominated, are a recipe for trouble.

    When India signed the Indo-U.S. civil nuclear deal, Pakistan also wanted the same deal as parity. It had to be reminded that it was Pakistan who proliferated nuclear technology to North Korea, Iran, Libya and many other places. Under the circumstances, the United States flatly rejected any conversation on parity in civil nuclear matters.

    In the past three years, Pakistan has implemented its own parity with India. When India had its first Israeli AWACs delivered last year, Pakistan arranged the delivery of a much inferior AWAC from Sweden.

    India has been flying Israeli-made surveillance drones for the past eight years. Pakistan wanted the same, but nobody was willing to sell them to them. So it arm-twisted the United States into supplying 14 unarmed versions this year under the pretext of fighting the Taliban.

    Also, when India contracted with France to build diesel submarines, Pakistan timed the delivery of its diesel submarines, again from France, ahead of deliveries to India.

    There is no end to Pakistan’s obsession with parity with India. Indian-made LCA fighter jets will be delivered to the air force in about two years. But Pakistan had its version of the fighter made and delivered from China two years ahead of India’s delivery.

    If India tests a home-built missile, Pakistan goes out of its way to sell its soul for a similar one from North Korea or China, even before the Indian version is fully operational. The Pakistani “Babur” cruise missile is an example.

    One has to note that hurriedly procured missiles from North Korea and China are not in the same class as those developed by India with Israeli and Russian assistance. But Pakistan always claims huge successes and correspondents from the British Jane’s Weekly are always in attendance to write admiring reviews.

    This parity obsession is costing Pakistanis a bundle. But they do not mind. They do not mind starving their population into eating grass as long as they get their nuclear weapons, missiles, fighter jets, AWACs and submarines.

    China and the United States have been using Pakistan from time to time for their own agendas and will continue to do so, as the country’s obsession with getting more arms for parity makes it easy to manipulate Pakistan.

    --

    (Hari Sud is a retired vice president of C-I-L Inc., a former investment strategies analyst and international relations manager. A graduate of Punjab University and the University of Missouri, he has lived in Canada for the past 34 years. ©Copyright Hari Sud.)


    http://www.upiasia.com/Politics/2010/02/05/pakistans_obsession_over_parity_with_india/5101/
     
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  3. Indianrabbit

    Indianrabbit Regular Member

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    Pakistan was able to stand India in military conflict only because of help provided by USA and in return Pakistan did what USA wanted. I hope that they would have made similar effort towards the economy. They have all that is needed for a strong economy if they get their focus right.
     
  4. Dark_Prince

    Dark_Prince Regular Member

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    That's true no doubt! But before they can do anything to their economy, they have to revamp their jingoistic and fantasy based education system!
     
  5. tarunraju

    tarunraju Moderator Moderator

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    A very thorough article. I guess Pakistan's rot lies solely in its politics, and how the local politicians got their priorities all wrong. Just too many of them win public opinion / elections on an anti-India plank, well aware that the plank is fruitless. So all these defence procurements are merely to score points in the political scene. While our politicians brag about the Chandrayan mission, the expressway they just built, or the thousands of new rural schools they just built, theirs brag about which latest weapon system their military bought. A sad state of affairs.
     
  6. Dark_Prince

    Dark_Prince Regular Member

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    Its not their fault, you have to realize that their system, society and the culture is solely based on the concept of being superior to Indian Kafirs and being Anti-India. "We are The Best" and "We are Blessed" etc etc etc etc ideas/concepts being everyday's talk-completely away from grass root reality, making them more pathetic and pitiful day by day.
     
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2010
  7. ajtr

    ajtr Veteran Member Veteran Member

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    Pakistan's obsession with india is like jealous younger brother's obsession with hard working prosperous elder brother.It will whore itself to anyone just to maintain that military edge with india(as it do with saudis,UK,USA,china).but even then it cant catch up with india.The following article of Munir akram,the former ambassador of Pakistan to the UN reflects Pakistans and his low self esteem and obsession with india.


    New US strategy and Pakistan’s response

     
  8. ajtr

    ajtr Veteran Member Veteran Member

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    Is India's neighbourhood set to get even more dangerous?

     
  9. thakur_ritesh

    thakur_ritesh Administrator Administrator

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    I don’t have an issue with Pakistan seeking parity with us in terms of military hardware and the over all expenditure they do on their military and here I believe bleeding them further economically comes handy and this is something they are doing themselves and not being forced to do, one of the many reasons why the PA is no more than a cancer for Pakistan.

    Take a very simple example, in dollar terms Pakistan’s economy should have shrunk by around 40% in usd terms since their currency depreciated from rs60 to rs83 to a usd last fiscal but none of the sort happened since that country faced a monster in the form of inflation at the rate of well over 30% (officially stated figure) with an increase in the real growth rate at around 2% which in the end evened out the impact of depreciation in currency but quality of gdp hovering between 160-170b usd that Pakistan sits on today compared to a similar figure in 2008 has deteriorated tremendously, with the buying power again taking a tremendous toll and not only that, though this is not officially accepted by the GoP but this huge inflation rate has only pushed millions more below the poverty line, as per one estimate the average cost of living has increased by over 50% in just two years, have the salaries/earnings of people increased at the same level? No, now just imagine the repercussions.

    To top it all Pakistan is considered one of the most corrupt countries, given that with their annual expenditure around 50(+)b usd which is based mainly on borrowing and aid money, one can only imagine what amount of that money would be used up in the intended projects and what amount would end up in the pockets of various people involved in implementation and clearance of such projects, come to think of it, even if they use 10b usd of that amount looks huge by their corrupt standards.

    I have no issues till the time Pakistan lives in a false sense of parity and rots economically with them bogged down in struggling to achieve annual real gdp growth of over 7%, and till the time they can be kept below that 7% they will struggle to make ends meet, which is only good news for then you have a populace which will remain quite demoralized, more or less around the poverty line with productivity severely hit, with an investment atmosphere where no one would like to invest and all this further makes Pakistan vulnerable to more foreign aid who will have their pound of flesh in return.

    Hail the PA!
     
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