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Post-corona geopolitical strategic impact

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To start, we must understand the threat dimension in Pakistan. Challenge is unique. The threat is three dimensional. Covid19 with all its ramifications, unprecedented, threat of external aggression in the shadow of Corona, Pakistan political Chaos which is becoming murky by day.
State of economy , politics and strategy are not only interlinked but compliment each other. As we discussed earlier there will be , at least , 30%-40 % impact on economy , not only world over but also in Pakistan . Prolonged lock Down will force unemployed segments , so far controlled , to come on road . Beside disease victims , hunger and poverty are lethal and this if not tackled will become uncontrollable. Unfortunately corrupt in society are not sparing even this calamity to squeeze as much as they can . Along with this , opposition , they may have some reasonable suggestions are bent upon to create political storm. Not realising when the fire is ignited in a jungle it does not spare wet or dry. With world reeling under the burden of COVID 19 itself will not be able to help Pakistan . Surprisingly, couple of dozen leading families have staked billions of dollars abroad. So far no sign they will help the down trodden Pakistanis whose money they stole . Yet , they are still yearning to come back to power to clean the courtyard what ever left.
First, our industry need to be put back on road no matter the cost as quickly as possible. Fear, spread of virus making our intellectuals and some political leadership calling to continue lock down in strictest form . PM vision is different and correct , to start wheel of business and industry and at the same time make arrangements to check spread of disease. This can be done by selective lock down in areas threatened and ad hock hospitals to quarantine patients if need arise. The social and political upheaval has to be avoided there is no other choice . As a matter of fact we are at war , but of a different kind. A war against invisible enemy, the virus , in this there no room for despondency. It therefore call for declaring country under emergency as many countries of Europe and now Japan has done. For some myopic politicians teeming poor do not matter in tug of war. At the moment, the heat is not felt but it will catch them soon. Of course, the loss then will be phenomenal and situation will turn uncontrollable.
In many cities people have started violating the orders. They are coming on road . Even Ehsas programme will not mitigate problems. You can not look after fifty million or so . Even country like US is finding it helpless. Stores and shopping malls are being looted.
The answer , quickly put people at work. Our economy is 80% domestic , SMEs are the back bone. We must not destroy this segment . Mr Paul Kroger Nobel Laureate in an interview opined 2008 recession was different. Post Corona situation is unprecedented. Every stage of lock down add additional layers of unemployed. It is time , our intellectuals and politicians stop dreaming and propagating of an Utopian state. In 1970,s in a political move industrIes were nationalised. Around 50 years down the line Pakistan could never revive them . There are still skeletons in the cup board.
It’s social impact has been tremendous when world moves forward we backward.
Rightly, PM has opened Construction and now Agri Sector, some selected industries.whereas , Karachi a port city, and industrial life line of Pakistan can not be kept Lockdown in the absence of incomplete statistics. Barring few towns in Sind , Rural Sind is completely open . Cost analysis be carried out and few make shift hospitals can be erected to deal with abnormal situation , if it arise. Social, economic and political consequences can be grave if Karachi is kept choked.
Economy has direct bearing on our defensive and offensive capability. The impact of this lock down coupled with fast changing international milieu as result of the virus when US largest Air Craft Carrier is grounded and large number of sailors are effected , COVID 19, US military fearing negative impact on its combat capability. So is the case in NATO where Europe estimate 30% down fall in economy. First time EU countries are closing its borders to check virus spread. In longer run it will have geo political ramification. After Brexit Britain is getting cut off and if Corona virus continue already Spain and Italy are bitter about France and Germany not helping them. Though now a package of 500 million Euro is announced. This space is being filled by Russia and China. Whereas smaller EU members are trying to fathom turbulent waters on their own . It has to be seen in coming days how EU cope with the economic , socio and political challenge. Certainly their noose dived economy will impact imports as health care will be priority. It will impact Pakistan exports to EU. Minimum 30 % is likely to be down . The social impact of post Corona is important specially with regard to immigrants. Far right is already crying. There is always opportunists to cash it politically . It will also impact NATO,as Trump will urge EU to share more financial burden on NATO expenses. In Africa , militaries are getting out of regional wars of war lords. It impact, if war lords do not stop fighting or cease fire, it will be of horrified consequences. .
After , Second World War
League of Nation died , UN is loosing its relevance and failed to resolve and major international issues . Palestine, Kashmir , African infighting, Afghanistan and burning ME are where UN miserably failed to move to resolve , as major powers all viewed these issues from their own strategic lens. It may not be quick but it will be painful to see it dying. That mean , rise of regional alliances. Post COVID 19 these grouping will get more relevance.
In South Asian context , hiccups apart, Taliban/ US talks are not broken irrespective , encouraged by India , Ashraf Ghani / Abdullah duo are trying to spoil the agreement. But , barring major cities where US bases are located in countryside , large part is under Taliban influence. Except area in North is being controlled by DAESH and some areas Groups under Iran,s influence. Thus it is a very complex issue. Pakistan has to be not only on guard and watchful as any civil war like situation will trigger another refugee crisis. Strategically and financially it will be difficult situation . Under international conventions , in case of large influx , Pakistan can not remain unconcerned. We should be ready to brace the situation irrespective of internal problems, both in the east and western borders. Unfortunate , Indian and Afghan Sleeper cells will try to exploit . In Corona PANDEMIC and follow up period , UNCHR may not be a great help . What is the answer?
Pakistan must try to help the US Taliban move forward, US be asked to engage Ashraf Abdullah duo to rise above personal agenda and finally be on guard on western border . Stop any ingress in FATA of elements sponsored from abroad. While whole attention is on COVID 19 , these elements will try to capitalise. A broad based government in Kabul is vital to avoid civil war.
In the East , India , while world is grappling with COVID 19, inwardly the Indian nation up in arms against own government for not tackling the deadly virus on one side and isolating over 200 million muslims , strengthen its policy to change demography in Indian held Kashmir . Registration act is clamped thus signalling de facto annexation of the territory. Pakistan and the world has rejected Indian action as Indian Kashmir is a disputed territory. Indian action not only violated UN resolutions , international agreements but has effectively killed Shimla and 1973 Tri lateral( India, Pakistan and Bangladesh)agreement. In consequence while world at large and Pakistan in particular is grappling with deadly virus. Reportedly, under immense international pressures and fast emerging fissures in Indian polity , India has temporarily suspended implementation. Pakistan should be under no illusion and , the moment situation come under control it will implement its agenda.
There is increased violation not only on LOC but also sabotage activity inside Pakistan . There has been three incidents in FATA and a RAW net work caught in Karachi. There should be no doubt India , to divert attention from domestic issues can under take an adventure on LOC (for India now ) international border. So is vulnerable Pakistan coast line and requiring Navy’s capability be enhanced.
while we are engaged in Fight against Covid19 , we must gradually activate civil capability to preserve Pakistan’s combat capability. In this regards it pertinent to activate Mujahid and Razakar element. They can be useful in fight against Covid 19 as well .
Pakistan diplomacy need to be more aggressive and mission orientated. PM address to UN and world community be taken forward to all developed countries. Pakistans Debt and Koran’s be rescheduled. Kashmir, Pakistan must continue to press the issue. Time is coming , Pakistan like it or not can not remain physically unconcerned.
A Global Marshal plan is required to help developing and poor countries in post Corona Period to avoid greater turmoil. It is the responsibility of Developed countries.