Pakistan–Russia relations [3 of 5]


Russia condemned the military coup d’état against Prime minister Nawaz Sharif in 1999 to remove the prime minister from power.
On 19 April 2001, the Russian Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Alexander Losyukov paid a state visit to Pakistan where both countries agreed upon cooperating in economic development, and to work towards peace and prosperity in the region.
In the wake of September 11, 2001 attacks, the relations warmed rapidly when Pakistan denounced the government of Taliban and joined the NATO coalition to hunt down the Jihadist organizations and al-Qaeda.
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WAR AGAINST SOVIETS & POST WAR DEVELOPMENTS 

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So the Soviet relations with Pakistan came to deterioration on April 4, 1979, when Bhutto was executed by the Supreme Court of Pakistan. [21] Earlier, Leonid Brezhnev, Alexei Kosygin, and other members of the Politburo had sent repeated calls for clemency to the CMLA General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq who straightaway rejected the Soviet requests. [21] Breznev maintained that issue concerning Bhutto’s trial was Pakistan’s internal matter yet did not wish to see him executed. When Bhutto was hanged, Brezhnev condemned the act out of “purely humane motives”. [21]

MILITARY DICTATORSHIP (1977-1988)

Afghanistan map after Soviet intervention : Showing areas involving heavy fighting. Note: Areas adjacent to Balochistan province remained untouched (white region, south) from the fighting while the NWFP (north-west) was inflicted with heavy fighting.

Shortly after the Soviet intervention in Afghanistan, Pakistan’s military ruler General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq called for a meeting of the senior military members and technocrats of his government. [22] At this meeting, General Zia asked the Chief of Army Staff General Khalid Mahmud Arif (veteran of 1965 and 1971 wars) and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Muhammad Shariff (who was made POW by India during the Bangladesh Liberation War in 1971) to lead a specialized civil-military team to formulate a geo-strategy to counter the Soviet aggression. [22] At this meeting, the Director-General of the ISI at that time, Lieutenant-General Akhtar Abdur Rahman advocated for an idea of covert operation in Afghanistan by arming the Islamic extremists, and was loudly heard saying: “Kabul must burn! Kabul must burn!”. [22] As for Pakistan, the Soviet war with Islamist Mujahideen was a complete revenge in retaliation of the Soviet Union’s long timed unconditional support for its arch-rival rival India, notably during the 1965 and the 1971 wars, which had led to the loss of its former wing East Pakistan. [22] (more…)

Pakistan–Russia relations [2 of 5]


In 1974, Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto paid a tiring and lengthy state visit to Soviet Union, becoming the first prime minister since the independence of Pakistan in 1947. Bhutto and his delegation was met with great jubilation, a warm-hearted celebration took place after Bhutto was received by Alexei Kosygin in Moscow. The honorary guard of honor was offered by the Soviet Armed Forces, and a strong interaction took place between the two coutries during Bhutto’s democratic era.
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FINDING NEW FRIENDS, NEW FOES

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 MILITARY DICTATORSHIPS (1958-1971)

In July 1957, prime minister Suhrawardy approved the leasing of a secret ISI installation, near the Peshawar Air Base to the CIA. [6] After having staged the military coup d’état against President Iskander Mirza, Army Commander Ayub Khan visited the United States, thus further enhancing relations with the U.S., while at the same time, tried establishing link with the Soviet Union through Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. [6]

“Pakistan felt deceived because the U.S. had kept her in the dark about such clandestine spy operations launched from Pakistan’s territory” —General K.M. Arif, Chief of Army Staff. [7]

In 1959, Ayub Khan permitted the reconnaissance flights and covert surveillance flights of U-2, giving the authorization of final U-2 flight, piloted by USAF Captain Francis Gary Powers. This operation ended violently when Soviet Air Defence Forces shot down the U-2, capturing its pilot in the Soviet air space.

Overall, Ayub Khan knew of this operation, understanding the consequences and the aftermath, and shuddered his shoulders when he was notified in London, by the USAF and the CIA. [8]

The U-2 incident severely compromised Pakistan security and worsened relations between the Soviet Union and Pakistan, with Soviets now backing India.[8] During this time, the Indian nuclear programme expanded and progressed at very exponential level.[8] As an attempt to put up a bold front, former chief of army staff General Khalid Mahmud Arif while commenting on the incident stated that, “Pakistan felt deceived because the U.S. had kept her in the dark about such clandestine spy operations launched from Pakistan’s territory”.[8]

A great Soviet ire was on Pakistan, so the Soviets threatened to bomb the base if future missions were flown from it. [8] Soviet Union further paid back its revenge on Pakistan during Indo-Pakistani war of 1965, when it emerged as the biggest supplier of military hardware to India. [9] India too, had now, distanced herself from the Western block countries, developing close relations with the Soviet Union. [9] Together the Soviet Union and India used the diplomacy, convincing the U.S. and Western powers to keep a ban on Pakistan’s military and hardware. [10] After the 1965 war, the arms race between India and Pakistan became even more asymmetric and India was outdistancing Pakistan with a big margin. [11]

RELATIONS BETWEEN WEST AND EAST PAKISTAN

The Soviet Union had far more better relations with East-Pakistan, and had strong ties with the Communist Party in Pakistan’s eastern wing after successfully staging the protest to give national recognition toBengali language as compared to Urdu in the 1956 constitution. [12] The Communist Party played also its role to ensure complete elimination of Pakistan Muslim League once and for all, in the eastern wing leading to the collapse of federal government led by Pakistan Muslim League at the centre. [12]

The tendency towards democracy and the Anti-American sentiment was much greater in East-Pakistan, and this highly benefited the Soviet Union in 1971. [7] When the mutual defence treaty was signed, it was followed by the arrival of US military advisers from the MAAG group, which was announced in February 1954. As a result there was great outcry in East-Pakistan. Many demonstrations led by the communist party were held and the 162 newly elected members of East-Pakistan Parliament signed a statement, which denounced Pakistan’s government for signing a military pact with the United States.[7]

In post 1971 West-Pakistan, the Soviet relations with Pakistan improved after the formation of leading democratic and socialist Pakistan Peoples Party. [6] The tendency of socialism was greater in West Pakistan, in contrast to East Pakistan and in the former western wing of the country now Pakistan the trend and tendency towards communism was at its height. [6]

After the 1965 war, Soviet relations with socialist nuanced parties namely the Awami National Party, Pakistan People’s Party, and the Pakistan Socialist Party, impulsively improved. In 1972, the Pakistani Parliament passed the resolution which called for establishing ties with the Soviet Union.[6] During the 1980s when the purges took place under the Zia regime, the socialists members escaped to Soviet Union through Afghanistan, seeking  political asylum there. [6]

ROLE IN THE INDO-PAKISTAN WAR OF 1971

The Soviet Union played a decisive role in the 1971 Winter war, first signing the Indo-Soviet Treaty of Friendship and Cooperation. [13] The Soviet Union sympathized with the Bangladeshis, and supported the Indian Army and Mukti Bahini during the war, recognizing that the independence of Bangladesh would weaken the position of its rivals—the United States, Saudi Arabia, and China. [13]

On 6. December and 13. December 1971, the Soviet Navy dispatched two groups of cruisers and destroyers and a nuclear submarine armed with nuclear missiles from Vladivostok; [13] they trailed U.S. Task Force 74 into the Indian Ocean from 18. December 1971 until 7. January 1972.

The Soviets also had a nuclear submarine to help ward off the threat posed by USS Enterprise task force in the Indian Ocean. [14][15] The Soviet Navy’s presence had put a threat of existence for Pakistan, with the Soviet nuclear submarines’ K-320 and Charlie, of which movements were picked up by Pakistan Navy’s submarines. [13] The Pakistan Navy’s submarines Ghazi, Hangor, and Mangor had sent solid evidence of Soviet Navy’s covert involvement helping the Indian Navy, and Soviet Navy’s own secret operations against Pakistan Navy. [13] Pakistan Navy avoided aggressive contacts with the Soviet Navy due to possible nuclear retaliation by Soviet nuclear submarines in Karachi. [13]

In 2012, in an official press release by the Russian Consulate-General in Karachi, the Russian ambassador remarked that former Soviet stance against Pakistan in 1971, was a “somewhat embarrassing for our relations”. [16]

DEMOCRATIC GOVERNMENT (1971-1977)

U-2 Grand Slam Flight Plan, 1 May 1960

The democratic socialist alliance led by then-prime minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto made an effort to improve relations with the Soviet Union. This was for the first time in the history of Pakistan that Soviet Union’s ties with Pakistan began to warm up and relations were quickly improving. Reviving his foreign policy, Bhutto withdrew his country from SEATO and CENTO, breaking off relations with the United States under the presidency of Jimmy Carter.

In 1974, Bhutto paid a tiring and lengthy state visit to Soviet Union, becoming the first prime minister since the independence of Pakistan in 1947. Bhutto and his delegation was met with great jubilation, a warm-hearted celebration took place after Bhutto was received by Alexei Kosygin in Moscow. [17] The honorary guard of honor was offered by the Soviet Armed Forces, and a strong interaction took place between the two countries during Bhutto’s democratic era. [17] Bhutto also met Leonid Brezhnev and Pakistan concluded agreements with Soviet Union on mutual trust, cooperation, technical assistance, and friendship.[18]

While there, Bhutto succeeded to convince the Soviet leaders to establish the integrated steel mills, which prompted the Soviet Union to provide funds for the billion dollar project. [19] Prime Minister Bhutto made a deliberate attempt to warm relations with Russia as he was trying to improve relations with the Communist bloc. [19]

Bhutto sought to develop and alleviate the Soviet-Pak Relations, as Soviet Union established Pakistan Steel Mills in 1972. [20] The foundation stone for this gigantic project was laid on 30 December 1973 by the then Prime minister Mr. Z. A. Bhutto.

Facing inexperience for the erection work of the integrated steel mill, Bhutto also requested Soviet Union to send its experts to Pakistan. [20] Acceding to this request, Soviet Union sent dozens of advisers and experts, led by Russian scientist Mikhail Koltokof, who supervised the construction of this integrated Steel Mills with a number of industrial and consortium companies financing this mega-project. [20]

From 1973 till 1979, both countries enjoyed a strong relationship which also benefited the Soviet Union. [19] This interaction, however, turned short lived after the popular unrest which began to take place after the 1977 elections. [21] With active involvement of the United States, America’s notorious intelligence agency  the CIA sponsored the operation code-named Fair Play removing Bhutto from power in 1977.

Contd…

Next: War against Soviets & Post War Developments

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Related Posts: 

1. Pakistan can make Russia Queen of Asia 2. 2. Russia – Pakistan: the Way is Open for New Projects 3.  Pak–Russia Relations 4. After US, now Chinese bases in Pakistan!
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Pak–Russia Relations


Times change and change demands a re look on country’s long term foreign policy objectives. Apart from all what is on board out of mutually beneficial relations between Russian Federation and Pakistan in different sectors, a fact is that  Russia is our neighboring country.
And with large segments of Muslims living in different regions of Russia, and the newly independent energy rich Central Asian states, the problem of religious and narco terrorism, the vast potential that Pakistan offers to its giant neighbours including India needs to be exploited.
Pakistan offers the most pivotal trade route, opening a new chapter in Pak Russia relations will be the most appropriate and opportune approach, a bold step in the right direction.
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A RE LOOK ON PAKISTAN’S FOREIGN POLICY

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by Nayyar Hashmey

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Historically Russia Pakistan relations have seen many ups and downs, though these have mostly been on the downward side than otherwise. Reason for these falls was primarily the Russian tilt towards India – at the expense of Pakistan.

Though in terms of realpolitik what the successive Pakistani administrations adopted as India-centric policy might have been the correct approach yet seen from pure Pakistan-centric angle, it was never a true patriotic Pakistani approach.

The basic flaw in this policy was to put all our eggs in one basket. So, we thought, by vesting all our interests with the United States, not only shall we assuage our security, but also would make great economic strides, as vis-à-vis the Soviets, Americans were in far more better position to come up to such Pakistani expectations.

While doing so, however, we totally forgot the hard damn fact of life that in intentional relations its pure business that dictates and defines the contours of the foreign policy of a nation. (more…)

Ground zero


The world was stunned today as nuclear devastation fell on the Subcontinent. Enormous areas of Mumbai, Islamabad, Rawalpindi and Delhi were reduced to radioactive rubble in the early hours of this morning. Both Hyderabads have been obliterated, as have Sargodha, Bahawalpur and Jaipur, by weapons thought to have had a yield of about 40 kilotons (the Hiroshima bomb was less than half that).
An Indian strike against Karachi failed, when nuclear-armed Su-30 aircraft had to take evasive action and released their bombs about fifty miles east of Pakistan’s largest city – but then prevailing winds drove massive clouds of radioactive sand across the entire urban area and far along the coastline.
Ground zero for Pakistan’s nuclear missiles aimed at New Delhi appeared to be symbolic: India Gate, the city’s business area, centred round Connaught Place, no longer exists, and destruction was total in the diplomatic enclave of Chanakyapuri and north to Civil Lines, perhaps further.
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SUBCONTINENT: WHEN THE NUKES CONFRONT!!! 

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by Brian Cloughley

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Note for WoP readers:  The following post is a stark presentation of the nuclear Armageddon, a scenario which could beome a reality if sanity between India and Pakistan did not prevail. The war mongers in both the nuclear armed neighbours seem to have absolutely no idea of what a nuclear confrontation could entail between these two nations of the subcontinent. Or perhaps they intentionally have their own axe to grind, oblivious to what could happen to the vast multitude of humanity all across the subcontinent.

Agreed there are differences between the two. This is quite natural. Even when there are two persons, its not always the foregone conclusion that they will have the same opinion on every issue that comes into the orbit of their interaction. Simialrly countries too have differences. But to sort out opposing opinions, differences there is a civilised way. Fighting wars for territories, ideas, hegemony and economic interests is the most brutal way of sorting out such matters for a war in most cases brings nothingg but death and destruction.

India and Pakistan have been having differences on many issues right from the day both countries got independence when they came out of the yoke of British empire in 1947.

Instead of fighting a war which will result in no Kashmir, no India, no Pakistan, leadership in both the neighbouring states need to sit together and seriously make a bid to sort out their differences. If the leaders are sincere in settling the disputes, there will be a solution. God forbid if there is no solution, there will be nothing to discuss, nothing to rule, nothing to take pride of being Pakistani or a proud and patriotic Indian….. [Nayyar]


(more…)

The World’s Most Dangerous Border – KASHMIR



According to a Rand Corp study, an Indo-Pakistani nuclear exchange would immediately kill two million living souls, injure or kill 100 million later, pollute the Indus River and send clouds of radioactive dust around the globe.
That is the excellent reason why we should keep a weather eye on Kashmir and press India and Pakistan to make a fair settlement of this exceptionally dangerous 66-year dispute. In other words, no military solution to the long standing dispute over Kashmir. Let diplomacy have its way over stupidity of war games in Kashmir.
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TO AVERT A NUCLEAR HOLOCAUST,  WORLD MUST FIND A SOLUTION FOR KASHMIR 

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by Eric Margolis

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ISTANBUL –  Reports of fighting along Kashmir’s  cease-fire line don’t normally receive much attention in the western media.  Last week, for example, saw  a series of clashes on 8 and 10 January that killed both Pakistani and Indian troops.

One of the Indian soldiers was decapitated, provoking fury across India and calls from its extremist Shiv Sena Hindu party for a nuclear attack on Pakistan.

Gunfire is common on the 1947 cease-fire line known as the Line of Control that divided the beautiful mountain kingdom of Kashmir into Indian and Pakistani-controlled portions. Fighting in that tense region always has the potential to quickly escalate into a  major war – or even nuclear conflict.

Having been under fire numerous times on the LOC, I used the experience in my first book, “War at the Top of the World” to illustrate just how dangerous the simmering Kashmir dispute remains. 

A dispute that went from bad to critical after India and then Pakistan acquired and deployed nuclear weapons.  This, I wrote, was the most dangerous strategic threat facing the globe.

India and Pakistan have fought three  wars and some very large battles over Kashmir. Both claim the entire mountain state.  Pakistan’s intelligence service, ISI, has waged a long covert campaign to insert guerillas into Indian Kashmir to aid a series of spontaneous rebellions  against Indian rule by the state’s Muslim majority.

This writer has joined mujihadin fighting their way across the lethal Line of Control which is defended by Israeli-constructed fences, electronic sensors, minefields and Israeli-supplied drones. Losses  run very high among those trying to cross the line.

Muslim Kashmiris have been in almost constant revolt against Indian rule since 1947 when the British divided India. Today,  500,000 Indian troops and paramilitary police garrison rebellious Kashmir.  Some 40,000-50,000 Kashmiris are believed to have died over the past decade in uprising.

India blames the violence in Kashmir on “cross-border terrorism” engineered by Pakistani intelligence. Human rights groups accuse Indian forces of executions, torture, and reprisals against civilians.  Large numbers of Hindus and Sikhs have fled strife-torn Kashmir after attacks by Muslim Kashmiri guerillas.  It’s a very bloody, dirty war.

The Kashmir conflict poses multiple dangers.  First is the very likely chance that local skirmishing can quickly surge into major fighting involving air power and heavy artillery.  In 1999, a surprise attack by Pakistani commandos into the Indian-ruled Kargil region provoked heavy fighting.  The two nations, with more than one million troops facing one another, came very close to an all-out war.  I have on good authority that both sides put their tactical nuclear weapons on red alert.  Angry Indian generals called on Delhi to use its powerful armored corps to cut Pakistan in half.  India’s cautious civilian leadership said no.

Second,  the Kashmir conflict also involves India’s strategic rival, China.  Beijing claims the entire eastern end of the Himalayan border separating India and China, which Chinese troops occupied in a brief 1963 war.  China also occupied, with Pakistan’s help, a high strategic plateau on the western end of the Himalayas known as Aksai Chin that was part of historic Tibet.

China is Pakistan’s closest political and military ally.  Any major Indian attack on Pakistan would risk intervention by Chinese air, ground and missiles forces in neighboring Tibet.

Third, in the midst of all these serious tensions, India and Pakistan’s nuclear weapons – delivered by air and missile – are on hair-trigger alert.  This means that during a severe crisis, both sides are faced with “use it, or lose” decision in minutes to use their nuclear arsenals.

The strategic command and control systems of India and Pakistan are said to be riddled with problems and often unreliable,  though much improvement has been made in recent years.

A false report, a flight of birds, and off-course aircraft could provoke a nuclear exchange.  By the time Islamabad could call Delhi, war might be on.  A US Rand Corp study estimated an Indo-Pakistani  nuclear exchange would  kill two million immediately, injure or kill 100 million later, pollute the Indus River and send clouds of radioactive dust around the globe.

That is the excellent reason why we should keep a weather eye on Kashmir and press India and Pakistan to make a fair settlement of this exceptionally dangerous 66-year dispute.

copyright Eric S. Margolis 2012

More from Eric Margolis on Wonders of Pakistan

1. Dangerous war games in Syria 2. Egypt headed for an explosion 3. Facing the Writing on the Wall in Kabul  4. Nuclear missile Viagra for India 5 Obama does the right thing in Afghanistan 6. Will the US back real democracy in Egypt? 7.The man  who prevented World War III
Eric Margolis is an American born journalist and writer. He is contributing editor to the Toronto Sun chain of newspapers, writing mainly about the Middle East, South Asia and Islam. He contributes also to the HuffPost & appears frequently on North American tv channels.

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Wonders of Pakistan supports freedom of expression and this commitment extends to our readers as well. Constraints however, apply in case of a violation of WoP Comments Policy. We also moderate hate speech, libel and gratuitous insults.
We at Wonders of Pakistanuse copyrighted material the use of which may not have always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We make such material available to our readers under the provisions of “fair use” only. If you wish to use copyrighted material for purposes other than “fair use” you must request permission from the copyright owner.