India Intelligence Report

   Pak in Top 10 Failed State List


A Foreign Policy report that annually rates 146 countries on their effectiveness in maintaining control of its territories, running a Government, and providing basic public services rated Pakistan 9th most likely to fail ahead of Afghanistan, Nepal, and Lanka. India, with a larger social mobility and increased decentralization, was rated 93 well ahead of China at 57. Almost all of India’s neighbors feature high on the list--Pakistan at 9, Myanmar at 18, Bangladesh at 19, Nepal at 20, and Sri Lanka at 25. Predictably, the US, EU countries rank very well as stable states.

The study uses 12 parameters to rank the nations including criminalization or de-legitimization of the state, state’s security apparatus acting as a “state within a state,” rise of factionalized elites, intervention of other States or external actors, legacy of vengeance-seeking group grievance, chronic and sustained human flight, and uneven economic development. 

Pakistan scores heavily on all parameters with a total score of 103.1 on 120 while all other South Asian states scoring in mid-90s. India scored 70.4 making it the most stable country in South Asia and China scored 82.5. The study is a further validation of a BBC and Economic Review reports that alerted the world about extreme economic disparities in China. The study also negates the notion that China’s economic advance is making it more stable. Interestingly China lost points heavily this year and slipped from 75 to 57 due to increasing corruption and social and economic inequality.

The most significant pointer for India is the large drop by Pakistan from 34 last year to 9 this year and shown as more unstable than Liberia, Burundi, and Ethiopia. In other words, except for Sudan, Ethiopia, and Congo all other African nations are ranked higher than Pakistan making it worse off than sub-Saharan Africa. The ongoing civil war in tribal Baloachistan, the meteoric rise of Pakistan Taliban in Waziristan, the al Qaeda in the North West Front Province, Shia-Sunni sectarian strife in Karachi, inter-Sunni clash in Sindh, ongoing terrorist actives in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (PoK), unrest in Northern Areas are reasons why Pakistan has slipped so fast. The US Quadrennial Review talked extensively about nuclear weapons and weapons of mass destruction falling into the hands of non-state actors and the obvious reference is to Pakistan. Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf has upped his public relations (PR) portraying himself as a strong leader in control of the country and weaponry who can stand up to the West. Either the West or terrorist elements do not buy this image building campaign. Al Qaeda second-in-command Ayman al Zawahiri’s recent address calling Musharraf a traitor of Islam and calling for a rebellion against him is strong evidence that the PR campaign is not working.

The major question raised in this context is how India is planning to deal with a Pakistan that may fail and lose control of its nuclear and missile arsenal to terrorist elements. While al Qaeda will no doubt seek to gain control of some of them for use against Israel, EU, and the US, Kashmiri terrorists groups will want a fair share for use against India just as Chechen groups would want some against Russia and Uygurs for use against China. This is the angle that India needs to carefully monitor and develop options that will enable it to gain control of them if the Pakistan army were to fail against the terrorist or subversive elements or be overrun by them.

This report does not mean that Pakistan faces imminent failure. It just means that the risks are very high. In Pakistan’s case, the collateral damage in failure of state is very high and that is what India needs to guard against—the so-called “worst case scenario.” This is one case when India’s “credible minimum deterrence” strategy will not work. This paradigm is meant for use against recognized States who operate with a degree of responsibility and not against terrorist elements that do not care for their lives or those of innocent civilians.

India needs to take the leadership to develop strategies along with Israel, EU, US, Russia, and China. One thought is states who own nuclear weapons, including non-acknowledged nuclear powers such as India, Pakistan, and Israel, develop a protocol that would implement a destruction or disarming methodology that will render these weapons unusable in case of a terrorist take over of the state or parts of its weaponry. A similar one can be developed by those who posses weapons of mass destruction.

In parallel, India needs to enhance its satellite based spying operations to identify, monitor, and track suspected missile battery and nuclear weapons targets. Simultaneously, it should also develop offensive Network Centric Warfare software that can cripple communication mechanisms in case of an emergency granting security forces in India, Israel, EU, and the US enough time to take over these weapons.

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