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Hybrid Warfare

Understanding Hybrid Warfare

Gone are the days of fighting wars in the conventional manner; today’s strategy combines conventional warfare, irregular tactics and terrorist acts, including subverting the media by using the advertising power of financial institutions, and maybe of the State itself, other than violence, coercion and cyber warfare. Employing both modern technology and mobilization methods, variety of non-state actors are used, or a combination thereof. Wikipedia describes this new military strategy as “envisaging attacks by nuclear, biological and chemical weapons, improvised explosive devices and information warfare.” Taken together this is called “Hybrid Warfare”. Combining kinetic operations with subversive effort, the aggressor intends to avoid attribution or retribution, India has successfully managed this in world perception. Pakistan’s breakup in 1971 was the successful execution of this type of warfare by India.

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HYBRID WARFARE

Hybrid Warfare came to prominence in the 21st century, the “Age of Globalization” that has opened up many new technical and communication options and shrunk distances. According to Prussian general and military theorist Carl von Clausewitz “Every age has its own kind of war, its own limiting conditions, and its own peculiar preconceptions.” While fighting wars in the conventional manner. Russian General Gerasimov holds that “In the 21st century we have seen a tendency towards blurring the lines between the states of war and peace. Wars are no longer declared and, having begun, proceed according to an unfamiliar template”

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THE BALOCHISTAN DISCONNECT

On the evening of Oct 22, 2017 as I was entering Quetta Club with a CPNE delegation for a dinner hosted by the Speaker of the Balochistan Provincial Assembly Ms Rahila Durrani, my son Zarrar sent me a whatsapp snapshot of my three grandchildren in Halloween costumes from New York. By some odd coincidence fully 65 years earlier (1952) my late sister Shahnaz (than all of 3 years old) and I went to a “Fancy Dress Party” in Quetta Club. The many security checks of a “Fortress” on the way to the Club contrasted hugely with Mrs Mahmud Jan, Mrs Irani, Mrs Leslie, my mother and others (all of whose husbands were doing Command & Staff College) riding bicycles going to and fro from Quetta Club to play tennis and squash. Doing my “Weapons and Tactics Course” in 1967 I was privileged to be invited to lunch on Sundays by Brig Mahmud Jan, Commandant Infantry School and Brig SJB Irani, Comd Quetta Log area.

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INTERPLAY BETWEEN ECONOMY AND SECURITY

A strong connection between the country’s prosperity and military power or put simply, economy and security are two sides of the same coin; without political stability, without security and without peace it is difficult to develop an economy. An economy will only thrive when there is security for the people. The economy needs a secure environment for development while security creates the pre-conditions for sustainable economic growth and integration into regional and global economy. Without security chaos and confusion will result with violence creating its own economy for its sustenance (smuggling, narcotics trade, land mafia, extortion, ransom, etc). In today’s world a strong economy translates into greater military power, the weaker the economy the weaker is the military power.

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