A new strategy  

It is said that today’s Pakistan stands in contrast to the one envisioned by the Quaid-e-Azam. The tidal wave of religious extremism, intolerance, and terrorism sweeping the country poses a serious threat to the ideals on which Pakistan was founded. Pakistan, as a strategically located state, is trying to cope with an extremely competitive global security landscape— both regionally and globally. It is important that Pakistan devise its own grand strategy for the twenty-first century; it needs to be based on the realistic assessment of the evolving regional and global security environment. Might is right seems to be the only game in town, which is why the world is facing the frightening prospect of growing disorder. The incessant pursuit of national interest by all means has thus made world politics unstable and unpredictable.

First and foremost, Pakistan’s grand strategy needs to stress governance— the delivery of public goods— at all levels. Simply put, the state needs to provide a platform whereby citizens have easy access to the basic amenities of life. Secondly, rapid economic progress, eradication of poverty, provision of employment opportunities, the removal of inequalities as well as ending discrimination in every sector of the state and society, are some of the necessary steps to be taken if Pakistan wants a dignified status for itself in the comity of nations. Thirdly, Pakistan needs to come up with creative solutions for its equation with India. Fourthly, the goal of Pakistan’s grand strategy would be to safeguard and promote its national interests.

Last but not least, the grand strategy needs to revolve around the pursuit of national interest. National interest can be pursued in a better way if there is synchronicity between the domestic politics and foreign relations. The state will lag behind if there is a disconnect between the two as it seemingly exists at the moment. As it is known knowledge, the paramount role of grand strategy is to coordinate and direct all the resources of a nation towards the attainment of its political objectives, so the policy makers of Pakistan must act in unison for devising and implementing a grand strategy for the twenty-first century. For this to happen, democratic institutions should be strengthened to ensure political stability in the country. A strong, democratic state is thus an effective antidote to the disproportionate power of the unelected state institutions in Pakistan.



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