Saturday, September 22, 2007

Musharraf shakes up Pakistan army

Musharraf shakes up Pakistan army

Latest Changes in the Military ! How is who of the shake up !
In and Out and who's who of what ! Read it all here !

Also see 'why the changes are necessary'-

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1. Lt. Gen. Nadeem Taj is known for his total loyalty to Musharraf and hence his appointment as Director General ISI - the premier intelligence agency of Pakistan. Within the army circles he is known for his humble demeanor, professionalism, and aloofness from all things politics. Some believe that it may mean downgrading of ISI and Taj's task will be to depoliticise ISI.

2. Lt. Gen. Mohsin Kamal, a Kashmiri, is known for his bravery under fire, competence, and extensive knowledge of the area that he will be commanding (10 Corps covers Kashmir region, Northern areas and is responsible for securing sensitive nuclear sites). He is especially popular among the younger generation of army officers. It is likely that he will rise to become army chief in three years.

3. Lt. General Javed Zia played an important role in Karachi as Director General Rangers and was tasked to ensure good working relations between MQM and PML-Q in Sindh. He is known for his political insights vis-a-vis the Karachi scene.

4. Lt. Gen. Shujaat Zamir Dar led the anti-Bugti campaign in Baluchistan. Many in the army are surprised at his promotion. However, it is unlikly that he will get a command position (as corps commander) in future.

5. Lt. Gen. Jamil Haider, after apprenticeship with Lt. Gen. Kidwai, will be taking over as director general C41 (Command, Control, Communications, Computers, and Intelligence) - a sensitive job in the Nuclear Command Authority (NCA). He is known in army circles for his excellent coordination during the 2005 earthquake relief work.

6. Maj Gen Tariq Masood, an Abbasi from Hazara, and presently serving as director general Research, National Defence College, is said to be one such rare officers

Sept 21: Summary of changes :

President Gen Pervez Musharraf on Friday made some changes in key army positions, appointing a new head of the Inter Services Intelligence and commander of the Rawalpindi-based 10 Corps from among six major-generals promoted to the rank of lieutenant-generals.

Maj-Gen Nadeem Taj, once regarded as Gen Musharraf’s eyes and ears as head of the Military Intelligence, has been made director-general of the ISI and Maj-Gen Mohsin Kamal, who is little known in non-military circles, has been appointed as Corps Commander of Rawalpindi.As a brigadier, Gen Nadeem Taj had served as Gen Musharraf’s military secretary. He was later promoted as a two-star general, but he continued to serve in the same capacity when the army chief became the president.Later, he was appointed head of the Military Intelligence and apart from performing his routine job, he played a key role in overseeing the 2002 general elections and, at a later stage, in initiating a back-channel dialogue with Benazir Bhutto, chairperson of the Pakistan People’s Party.Maj-Gen Kamal served as the commandant of the Staff College, Quetta, and was currently posted as Force Commander of Northern Areas.

The two officers will take up their new assignments in October. Nadeem Taj will take over from Lt-Gen Ashfaq Pervez Kiani and Mohsin Kamal from Lt-Gen Tariq Majid.The announcement of the two appointments has highlighted the importance of both Lt-Gen Kiani and Lt-Gen Majid as being front-runners for the two posts of four-star generals which will fall vacant on Oct 8 with the retirement of the Chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee (CJCSC), Gen Ehsanul Haq, and Vice-Chief of Army Staff (VCOAS), General Ahsan Saleem Hayat.Some keen followers of defence-related matters are of the view that after the appointment of the new ISI chief and the 10 Corps Commander, there is a strong possibility that names of the new CJCSC and VCOAS will be announced soon.

Besides Maj-Gen Taj and Maj-Gen Kamal, an ISPR announcement says, Maj-Gen Shujaat Zamir Dar, Maj-Gen Javed Zia, Maj-Gen Muhammad Asghar and Maj-Gen Jamil Haider have also been promoted to the rank of three-star generals.Maj-Gen Dar has been appointed director-general of the Anti-Narcotics Force. As a brigadier, he served as deputy chairman of the National Accountability Bureau, commander of the Infantry Division and head of the counter-insurgency operation in Balochistan as inspector-general of the Frontier Constabulary. During his Balochistan assignment, Maj-Gen Dar and his deputy, Brig Saleem Nawaz, were injured when their helicopter came under fire in the Kohlu area.Maj-Gen Zia, currently Commander of Rangers in Sindh, and Maj-Gen Zamir Haider have been posted to the General Headquarters. Their posts are yet to be announced.Lt-Gen Asghar has been appointed rector of the National Institute of Science and Technology.

History of the Personal :

Gen Nadeem Taj new ISI chief
Five other major generals also promoted Gen Kiyani, Gen Majid frontrunners for COAS position
Asim Rana

RAWALPINDI: President General Pervez Musharraf appointed a new intelligence chief and promoted five other army generals on Friday. Nadeem Taj, who was President Musharraf's military secretary when he seized power in a 1999 coup, was among those promoted to the rank of lieutenant general and will replace Ashfaq Pervaiz Kiyani as director-general of the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI).

The military did not say whether General Kiyani will be promoted or retired. He is among the top generals tipped by analysts as a possible successor to President Musharraf as army chief. Another possible successor, General Tariq Majid, has been replaced as the corps commander of Rawalpindi - where the army has its headquarters by another of the promoted generals, General Mohsin Kamal.

The four other promoted generals are: Lt General Javed Zia, General Headquarters; Lt General Shujat Zamir Dar, director general Anti-Narcotics Force; Lt General Muhammad Asghar, rector of the National University of Sciences & Technology (NUST), and Lt General Jamil Haider, General Headquarters. The promotions come ahead of the expected retirement on Oct 7 of General Musharraf's two top deputies in the army: Gen Ehsanul Haq, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff committee, and Gen Ahsan Saleem Hayat, vice chief of army staff. The military has so far has not given any indication who will replace them.

Gen Ehsanul Haq is the former chief of the ISI and Gen Hayat was the Karachi corps commander before he was elevated as vice army chief in 2004. Gen Kiyani, Gen Majid, and Gen Khalid Qadwai, who is the commander of the strategic forces, are the frontrunners for the posts of army chief, vice army chief and chairman joint chief of staff committee, reliable sources told The Post Friday. Military sources said either Gen Kiyani or Gen Majid could replace General Musharraf as army chief next month.

Some close circles to the Presidency are saying that there is also a possibility that Lt General Salahuddin Satti, who is the chief of general staff, General Headquarters, will get a nod from President Musharraf to take over as the Chief of Army Staff. It is also being said that Gen Kiyani is President Musharraf's confidant, who has also worked with Pakistan Peoples Party chairperson Benazir Bhutto as a deputy military secretary, during her first tenure as the prime minister. Gen Kiyani, from the Baloch Regiment, has had training stints at US institutions and retains links from that period with the US army and security framework. He is considered to be a hardliner, experienced general with an ear to the ground on India. He has been part of the inner coterie among the principal staff officers advising the president on Kashmir and India-Pakistan peace process. He is also said to have played a role in promoting the dialogue with Ms Bhutto.

On the other hand, Gen Majid has been Rawalpindi corps commander, the important command, given its proximity to Islamabad and its primary role of handling military operations against India and keeping alive the Army's Kashmir agenda. Gen Majid's importance could be gauged from the fact that no general could attempt a coup without his support. Inevitably Gen Majid enjoys the confidence of the chief of the Army Staff and is more than likely to be a staunch loyalist when the army chief also happens to be the president of Pakistan. Gen Majid's name has also been mentioned as the likely successor to General Musharraf during the govt-PPP talks in Abu Dhabi in July this year. Gen Satti, also the former Rawalpindi corps commander, till October 5, 2006, is known for his close association with President Musharraf which dates back to the latter's tenure in Siachen. He had served with the Special Services Group (SSG) in Siachen as a brigadier. Earlier, Vice Chief of Army Staff General Ahsan Saleem Hyat on Friday paid a farewell call on President Musharraf and Defence Minister Rao Sikandar Iqbal at the Defence Ministry, Rawalpindi.

Gen Ahsan also paid a separate farewell call on Secretary Defence Kamran Rasool. About the

New ISI Boss: General Nadeem Taj has been promoted and appointed as the new DG ISI. Before being promoted and appointed to the present stature, he was performing the duty of commandment of the Pakistan Military Academy. He has also served as general officer commanding 11 Division Lahore and director general military intelligence and military secretary to President Musharraf.

Why the change ?

The Pakistan Army has promoted six major generals to lieutenant general today. The most important advancement is that of Nadeem Taj, who, as Shaan reported on Tuesday, is the new head of Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), replacing Ashfaq Kiyani.
Kiyani is likely to be the next Vice Chief of Army Staff (VCOAS), paving the way for his automatic succession of Pervez Musharraf as Chief of Army Staff (COAS) upon the Pakistani president’s retirement from the army. Other candidates include Tariq Majeed, Muhammad Sabir, and Salahuddin Satti.

These leadership changes are critical for Musharraf as his retirement from the army and vacating the post of COAS makes him severely vulnerable. The COAS has historically been the most powerful position in Pakistan and Musharraf is keen to replace himself with a loyalist.
Pakistan’s current political climate is akin to an armed standoff in which two (or more, perhaps) sides have their guns pointed at one another. Musharraf will drop his weapon as requested by his opponents, but only if he can trust his backup. He wants ensure that he will not be pounced upon (or worse) by his political opponents or those armed on his side (i.e. COAS, VCOAS, DG ISI) after disarming himself. His personal security and influence can remain as long as those in control of the big guns are loyal to him.

Musharraf’s vulnerabilities will increase into October. A key factor in determining the extent to which he will be weakened will be determined not only by the ongoing Supreme Court hearings, but also by the extent to which the People’s Party and Fazlur Rahman’s JUI accomodate Musharraf. Political pragmatists, both Benazir and Fazlur Rahman are somewhat on the fence, are waiting to see if the tide will fully turn against Musharraf or if they can extract significant concessions from him while he’s weak.

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