JF-17 blunder: What else you can get for the price of 50 fighter jets?

Published: May 21, 2011

Homeless people sleep on pavements in a street of Lahore early Friday. PHOTO: AFP

KARACHI: 

Pakistan is getting a good deal, Defence Minister Ahmad Mukhtar will tell you. Instead of paying $80 million per piece for the American-built F-16s, the JF-17 Thunder fighter jets will cost us about a fourth of that, between $20 and $25 million per piece.

The deal is so good, the minister says, that we’ve ordered 50 of the JF-17s to be delivered in the next six months.

How much would that cost us? Between $1 and $1.25 billion. That doesn’t sound awfully expensive for national defence in itself but how else could we spend about $1.25 billion?

Education

About seven million children in Pakistan are not enrolled in primary schools, according to Pakistan Education Task Force. With $1.25 billion, The Citizen’s Foundation, a private NGO that runs schools for underprivileged children, could educate 1.8 million of them for three years in over 7,000 schools built from scratch. Of course, if it was spent more wisely on already constructed schools, it could possibly resolve Pakistan’s education emergency.

Health

The Saudi government built basic health units at a cost of Rs13 million each in quake-affected a reas. That means instead of 50 fighter jets, we could have 8,173 basic health units, or over 1,400 fully-equipped, 50-bed hospitals.

Infrastructure

Lack of infrastructure – roads, airports, public transit systems – is a serious constraint on Pakistan’s development. Meanwhile, the floods destroyed the already-existing highway network in the country. For $1.25 billion, the National Highway Authority could build approximately 2,500 kilometres of brand new, four-lane highways or 1,250 kms of world-class, six-lane, access controlled motorways. That’s more than three times the length of the famed Islamabad-Lahore motorway.

Of course, it could alternatively be spent on the much-needed Gwadar airport, 13 times over!

And if I were to be selfish and think just about Karachi, it could pay for 80% of the Karachi Circular Railway’s cost, or give the city a modern bus rapid transit network, four times. That’s real splurging.

Power

Each megawatt (MWe) of power produced by a thermal plant costs about $1 million in plant construction etc, on average. $1.25 billion would mean we add an additional 1,250 MWe of electricity to our starved network. Of course, there is no guarantee we’d be able to produce and then use it since lack of electricity is not due to lack of installed generation capacity. But if you’re jingoistic enough, one could also use the 50 fighter jets money for an additional nuclear reactor at Chashma that would produce 340 MWe of electricity.

Published in The Express Tribune, May 21st, 2011.

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Reader Comments (106)

  • fahim
    May 21, 2011 - 10:55AM

    chinese are master planners and they plan 50 years ahead. They are simply milking pakistan. We have failed to understand that today our roads, ports, nuclear, missiles, mitilary hardware, ships, aircraft, dams, irrigation, electric plants and even capital market is almost fully in the hand of chinese. Our small and medium sector industry is dead due to foolish Free trade with china, the worlds cheapest producer. Thousands have lost jobs due to cheap import of everything from toys to automotive from china. There are NO FRIENDS in international market, only own interest. China is using us to its own economic advantage and like idiots we are playing in their hand shouting friendship. Looks like Even North Korea has more self respect than us who are completely dependent on chinese, Recommend

  • ehabs
    May 21, 2011 - 11:08AM

    Bring the Army under people’s control and you will solve 99% of Pakistan’s problems. Right now our Generals are living in their own worlds, expecting us to treat them like kings when they’ve done nothing but stolen from the taxpayers. No more defense spending before serious changes in the Army’s role. What say?Recommend

  • Ali Akbar Khan
    May 21, 2011 - 11:18AM

    The defense of the country surpasses all the so-called necessities the author has written about. We need the JF-17s and our nuclear missile program in view of the continued threat from IndiaRecommend

  • Junaid
    May 21, 2011 - 11:21AM

    It is just terrible to see so much money being spent on toys for our armed forces. It hurts real bad to imagine how our fellow citizens could have benefited from this valuable money!

    I just wish we could learn how to elect our representatives who can make the right decisions for us.Recommend

  • Junaid
    May 21, 2011 - 11:25AM

    @Ali Akbar Khan

    Please come out of your feeling of insecurity from India. We have been stagnant for the psat 50 years fearing India while they keep focusing on their growth.

    The future’s wars are not going to be about weapons! its going to be a knowledge based and economy based war! WE have to get rid of this OMG-India-is-gonna-attack-us mentality.Recommend

  • Rehan
    May 21, 2011 - 11:27AM

    @Ali Akber Khan: According to all credible scholars, there is NO, I repeat, NO threat from India to Pakistan in the future. India is focusing on its economy and social up-liftment. While Pakistan is wasting money on its Generals and going back 1000 years into the Dark Ages.Recommend

  • Abdul Wahab
    May 21, 2011 - 11:34AM

    I dun get the authors point. Your defence needs are far more important than food security and other stuff. Dun u remember Prophet Mohammad PBUH had swords hung in His house even when He had nothing to eat. Ones defence always take preference.
    To me this article is a waste of time. Recommend

  • zohaib shami
    May 21, 2011 - 11:34AM

    buying all these gadgets won’t make us safer as long as our society continues on promoting religious terrorism.All the glorification of mullahs spreading religious hate & intolerance in our country is what has led us to our present sorry state.

    When the rabid maulvis & ulema are allowed to have their own channels through which they spread their misogynistic,homophobic religious zealotry then buying planes won’t save us.

    We have to stop giving automatic respect to anyone with a beard or wearing a burka or hijab.This attitude of ours to get scared & intimidated any time we see a beard or a burka has to be finished.Just stopping to shave or hiding behind a black tent doesn’t make a person ‘good’ or ‘pious’. Recommend

  • mushtaq farooqui
    May 21, 2011 - 11:38AM

    instead of wasting billions of the taxpayers money on planes,take action against the madrassas & mosques where religious terrorism is starting from.When young minds are told to hate all non-believers,when they are told to cut off the head of anyone who stops becoming a muslim,when they are told that girls without hijabs or burkas are of loose character then all the tanks & planes in the world won’t save our country as these religious savages will destroy us from within.

    we don’t need india,america or israel to destroy us,our religious people are doing this on by themselves by taking us back to the mentality of the dark ages.Recommend

  • Yasir Khokhar
    May 21, 2011 - 11:50AM

    The simple economics concept of bread and butter. You spend around 16% Budget on defence, whereas spend 1.5% on education. 10 years down the road you would have 1 million well to do milatry force with 199 Million illetrate people.

    A simple recipe – be friends with India. it would help save india Trillion of dollars and Pakistan Billion of Dollars, which could be invested in health and education.Recommend

  • Rohail
    May 21, 2011 - 11:53AM

    If the people of Pakistan knew what was good, Pakistan would have been a better place now. Everything is fine the way it is. Please stop whining all the time.

    @Gulraiz Khan: This is one of the most nonsense articles I have ever read.

    TO PAKISTAN NATION: Grow up.Recommend

  • NA
    May 21, 2011 - 11:58AM

    By spending $1.2 billion at least the country will get 50 planes. Try to give this $1.2 billion to civil Govt for Education, Health, Infrastructure and Power and at the end of the day find this money in swiss accounts. Which is better?Recommend

  • MK
    May 21, 2011 - 11:59AM

    What threat from India? They have taken away 60% of the water. Punjab is now Doab or even less in few years. We have no respect in international community nor self-respect amongst the nationals. Kashmir is water issue and not a political or religious issue. If issues remain between Pakistan and India, armies will keep getting increase in budget based on inflation or even more. Everything will lead to unbelievable circumstances around the globe and especially Pakistan.Recommend

  • Arif Z
    May 21, 2011 - 12:01PM

    @Ali Akbar Khan:

    what will you do with these jf17s and when? After every thing is lost what dear friend will you do with jf17s?Recommend

  • Manoj
    May 21, 2011 - 12:06PM

    @Ali Akbar Khan:

    Better listen to the sane word of the author and also Mr. Fahim and Mr. Ehabs. Pakistan has no threat from India and in worst case scenario if there is a conflict the so called thunder will not match any of the advanced Sukhoi – MKI, MIG-29, Mirage -2000, and Jaguar and to be acquired Rafale or Typhoon which will fly in tandem with AWACS.

    Hence, better save your money and use them in the sector suggested by the author, become economically strong and then start process of military modernization.

    Learn from your best friend China, who first modernized their economy with the help of its worst ideological enemy USA, and Europe and now modernizing their Army.
    In any welfare state army modernization is last on the priority but as usual Pakistan believes in putting cart before the horse.Recommend

  • Qasim
    May 21, 2011 - 12:13PM

    Which comes first is a never ending debate. Perhaps there are few countries in the world where expenditure on social services exceeds defence. I yet have to come across rationale and balanced viewpoint from either side.Recommend

  • Irshad
    May 21, 2011 - 12:14PM

    I Wonder if JF17s also come with the kill switch like F16s. And when in a few more years, India becomes a big trading partner of China, would the Chinese use those kill switches to save their markets in India. Not that India wont be able to shoot these pieces of Chinese junk down anyway. Who will be your daddy when China starts to tilt towards a bigger much more richer India. Its time for Pakistan to shun LeT and ISI down and make friends with India. Otherwise Pakistan will self destruct in this mad arms race with India. Recommend

  • Vicram Singh
    May 21, 2011 - 12:19PM

    @Ali Akbar Khan: “We need the JF-17s and our nuclear missile program in view of the continued threat from India”

    Again back to square one !!Recommend

  • Taimur
    May 21, 2011 - 12:29PM

    Well, its good that we see such kind of comments targeting the military expenditure.

    But it would be much much better, if the article had commented on the Rs.300+Billion being wasted on keeping alive the 8 or so large Public Sector Organizations like WAPDA, PIA, Pak Steel Mills, Pak Railways etc etc. Rs.300+Billion comes to US$3.5Billion, double the amount which we will pay for these JF-17s which atleast would be used in the defence of the country. Nobody asks questions about the Rs.300Billion being wasted on the PSO, just to keep them alive.

    Then again, no one asks that why don’t we implement agri income tax, which alone will and can generate us Rs.200-250Billion or even more in tax revenues and if we can add the other rich and non tax paying nation in the tax net, we can generate much much more.

    These above two sectors of our country / nation can alone generate us close to USD$$ 6-7Billion a year revenues which can be well used for education, health and infrastructure development.

    WAPDA has more then 100K employees and thousands more retired, who enjoy large number of free electricity units, and in the end the poor people have to pay extra money to keep WAPDA alive.

    So, plz before targeting the military expenditure, ask yourselves about the issues mentioned above and see what we can generate with just a few extra measures.

    RegardsRecommend

  • AHK
    May 21, 2011 - 12:34PM

    Aren’t these being given FREE by the Chinese. Atleast Dawn said so.Recommend

  • ilyas
    May 21, 2011 - 1:08PM

    @fahim:
    So there is no difference between the Chinese and Western mindset?
    I understand there is – a vast difference.
    As for capturing the market, look at its market domination of its arch-rival, India, or US, or England.
    It is quite silly to cast such a slur on the Chinese .Recommend

  • Atif
    May 21, 2011 - 1:15PM

    Firstly, I appreciated Mr.Gulraiz Khan about his visionary thoughts.well done
    Being a Pakistani we should loud our voices about this serious issue “Defense spending”
    We have enough sophisticated defense technology, we should be rely on it first and try to make it useful against our Sovereignty.

    We never try to find corruption in more than 70% spending on defense and eager to do the same in rest.irrational..

    Only the young blood could save our Pakistan. Recommend

  • Awais Nawaz
    May 21, 2011 - 1:34PM

    The discussion going on is by intellectuals definelty speaking from very high ground and of greater things. But being a total commoner, keeping in mind the buildup of Indian Airforce, and if we want a sambalnce of detterent then this is the cest deal. The question that what else we could buy instead of 50 planes, the answer that we can buy suserviance to india, this is what our class of intellectuals want then this we will get.Recommend

  • rgg
    May 21, 2011 - 1:41PM

    @Ali Akbar Khan:
    Yes. Got to prevent those Indians and Americans from violating our country. We love the Chinese for those planes, bombs, missiles and nukes they give us. They are GREAT!!!Recommend

  • May 21, 2011 - 1:46PM

    NO country is known by how much bread they eat every year… All the countries in the world have influence over others only because of Power,,, money power, or army power…

    so no need for bread… we really need nuclear plants, fast fighter jets and best ammunition available in the world. Recommend

  • faraz
    May 21, 2011 - 2:23PM

    Why did we test nuclear bombs if we were to waste money on conventional weapons? Apply common sense, nobody is going to attack a nuclear stateRecommend

  • rifaye(India)
    May 21, 2011 - 2:33PM

    pakistan has been living in dillusion since its birth, that india is planning to take over pakistan. beleive me, with our very own complex society, diverse langauge,culture, ethinc and much of poverty to be eradicate. do you think any sane mind, would want to add that burden? adding another 180 million people, with another 10 of ethnic group, with much more complex society,with poverty striken country ? if india do so, we will just go back by 50 years and eventually the nation collapse..so come out of it.all we worry about is some rogue element constantly working to terrorize us ? and those rogue elemets are funded, protected, encouraged by some elements with in your own establishment….otherwise, we want to mind our own business,and look after ourself.

    beleive me, the moment the west (read it as usa) realize that groups LeT are not just a threat to india but to entire world, abbottabad like raid, will mean to happen again with or without pakistan consent.

    neither you latest JF17 nor your f16 can do anything with it. did it helped u during abbottabad raid ? NO!..again, we moved on, and we look at bigger picture, with bigger responsiblity in world politics. with all our defence procurement, i must say we are still spending less compared to usa or china or even russia. this year we alloate 1.8% of gdp compared to 2.6% of gdp in last year. and that speaks volume. that goverment set its priority some where else.

    and if this false pride give u all happiness, please go ahead buy all those weapons.. but we are certainly not worried about it, we can very well take care of ourself.Recommend

  • May 21, 2011 - 2:41PM

    Come on people… we have a budget for defense and why not to use it? Zardari will eat it up too if he gets any oppertunity. Pakistan’s strategic location is very important and America is staring at it for a long time now. APNI TALWARAIN TAIZ rakhni chahain or nishanay pakkay…We will resist and fight till we die if someone attack us. And i laughed on one comment her. WE dont fear them u idiot DONT you see they are arranging for latest fighters even there are bad circumstances as compared to us if you look at social factors.
    WE NEED OUR DEFENCE TO BE as strong as it can be I appreciate the move and will appreciate on start working on 5th generation fighter as ASAP…Recommend

  • Pradeep
    May 21, 2011 - 2:48PM

    Bring back Shaukat Aziz, he was doing wonders with Pakistani economy, while still Army being pervasive with India. Any one can see, that a threat from India, which is trying to set its own house right should be the least on priorities of Pak govt. Hopefully this anti-India rhetoric will stop and sane words from people like Gulraiz Khan will prevail. As far as JF17 is concerned it will be shot down in noe time without advanced AWACS or fighters to support. Recommend

  • Asad
    May 21, 2011 - 2:57PM

    @fahim:
    “There are NO FRIENDS in international market” so true.Recommend

  • Random
    May 21, 2011 - 2:58PM

    This week’s Economist gives a very accurate depiction of how the Army keeps the public under a cloud of fear which it uses to justify exorbitant spending. Untill we get the army under civilian control the social and economic conditions in the country will never improveRecommend

  • shiningeyes
    May 21, 2011 - 2:59PM

    hahaha @faraz and would you allow americans and if americans than possibly indians to do some operations like jeronemo in Pakistan and run away and then we cry on split milk? Your statement is logicless….Recommend

  • Henna Khan
    May 21, 2011 - 3:10PM

    Heard few days ago on tv that the parliament has decided to stop some projects due to lack of funds, and by coincidence 26 of them are of Education, Food, Health and Agriculture…and they say that Sovereignty is the biggest problem of Pakistan, seems no one ever teach them a lesson from Political Science…Recommend

  • Maaz Ahmed
    May 21, 2011 - 3:11PM

    First ensure SURVIVAL and then REVIVAL… Aurthur has pointed areas which need REVIVAL but JF-17 thunders are required for our SURVIVAL..

    Mr bhutto is always praised for his statement that “ghass kha kar bhi atom bomb bnana para to bnaen gae”. and it was coz of this initiative that we are surviving today.Recommend

  • Shafqat.salahuddin
    May 21, 2011 - 3:19PM

    I like your blog but if it was at time of peace I would have fully endorsed it .But u should gauge just 5 years ahead or simply the years after 2005.You should understand the American Israeli India Germany Britain France & the rest of European Union is actively support India & Afghanistan against an Economic blockade of Pakistan. Which in fact is in place from 1990 when Americans left Afghanistan.In the American Media it is clear that U.S does not support a healthy Pakistan after the Soviet defeat in Afghanistan.Americans had chosen India as its strategic partner & wants to get rid of the state of Pakistan.The new reason is Pakistan is the biggest stumbling block in encircling China a important Strategic partner of your country.
    Americans before 9/11 did not have the guts to say they want to get rid of Pakistan which for the CIA/MOSS AD/RAW/MI5..7 other European intelligence outfits is or was their Prime task & to destabilize & meline Pakistan in the eyes of world community
    “.Understand Bin Ladin is a Saudi was bought up by the AMERICAN CIA was sent to Pakistan on whose invitation (CIA) Bin Ladin not only won 1 but 2 Presidential Elections for the Republicans
    CIA not any Pakistani found his hideout in Abbotabad a city in Hazara about 50 miles out of Islamabad his dead body was not shown either to Pakistanis or any other World Media outlet His dead body was put to the sharks just like the American Lone Sharks.
    Lady under stand Pakistan will face the worst war or the mother of all wars.
    Indians are toying the American line the have to attack Pakistan it is as the old record company His Masters Voice says
    Attack Pakistan………….Jf17,s are for your defenceRecommend

  • May 21, 2011 - 3:25PM

    @ Gulraiz Khan

    Never heard your outrage while fleets of imported bullet proofs for VVIP were brought, neither when faulty scanners made their way……………..
    I believe the theme is unjustified!!!Recommend

  • Nasrat Baloch
    May 21, 2011 - 3:28PM

    We “patriotic” citizens don’t agree with the author as we the, conqueror, have some plans; First and the most to conquer the Red Fort in India and hoist the green crescent flag on that. Then we have to liberate many countries where the Islam is in danger, consequently we clear the world from the infidels. For this great noble cause we need a strong Islamic Army that must be equipped with all sophisticated weapons on the earth! A great cause need sacrifices hence we are ready to: die in hunger,live without proper healthcare,poor sanitation,No education, No electricity- nothing. We eat grass but go to our plans.Recommend

  • sohels
    May 21, 2011 - 3:28PM

    we have fought three (four if you count kargil disaster) wars with india, none of which they started and none of which we have won. our generals need an excuse to eat up a huge portion of the national budget and live in their own delusional world. they have made india this excuse.

    50 bright young men will be needed to fly these cheaply made chinese planes that china itself does not want to use. 50 more men will dedicate their lives to violence and killing. we need to remove all mention of indian threat, religious orthodoxy, and intolerance from our textbooks. our children should see and understand the world as it is, and not as our generals would like them to see it. we need a peaceful, tolerant society that encourages young men to seek a better, more prosperous life. we should respect each other’s views and rights, and shun violence.

    china and america may be headed for a new cold war. india and pakistan need not be a part of it. let us resolve our disputes ourselves, and let us do it peacefully.Recommend

  • sultan
    May 21, 2011 - 3:32PM

    apprecialtable Mr.Gulraiz Khan…..60 yrs have gone Pakisstan cme into being. During these 60 years no edilble efforts are done to come over the prior problems that you mentioned above. All pakistanis want the same what you have mentioned . let me tell you these problems can be solved if Pakistan existed. till now outer threats are thrown on Pakistan in order to weaken the country . Hampers are created at different steps to block the way for pakistan to progress. international agencies are at full swing in Pakistan.india is totly involved in Balochistan and Karachi. whenever Pak-I ndia relashtion comes to exist ,india quikly withdraws.etc etc…..so what is the better way for pakistan….i m sure you may know…After usama was killed., USA said we did it with full support of Pakistan. Later usa tried worsening condition for Pakistan that i will investigate who was supporting usama from inside and outside….so….enough ithinkRecommend

  • haleel
    May 21, 2011 - 4:09PM

    I think economic relations with india will help us get rid of indo phobia!!

    all 4 wars were started by us!!I will not blame india for pakistan phobia existing in their media!!

    We started khalistan,kashmir and supported all kinds of terror in india!!

    They are actually not even active in balochistan (our ministers have backed out every time from blaming india directly…..We cant say that proividing money to insurgents is actual interfences….
    while we have been sendning militants into kashmir,punjab!We even have some camps and harbor people who are wanted in india)

    i a live in west and i feel that india and pakistan should not spend any energy fight against each other!

    Nawaz sharif speaks sense and we should not have enmity with india.China india trade will go up to 100 billion $ by 2015 and 500 billion dollar by 2020!!

    India will be second biggest market to china and china will ditch us in future!!so its better to have all cards in hand!!
    Lets be friends with everyone in world and get rid of taliban,AQ and all these chechen,uzbek, and other terrorists who come here to take trainingRecommend

  • Shabbir Baloch
    May 21, 2011 - 4:33PM

    Its not blunder. soon you will come to know why Pak army need these jets. The Nations only survive if they have good defence capability.Recommend

  • Shabbir Baloch
    May 21, 2011 - 4:39PM

    Another thing…. The Pakistani Air Force has ordered 150 “Thunders”, which it may increase to 250. The 50 mentioned in the report are likely part of the larger order.
    Go PAF Go… We need lot moreRecommend

  • pappu
    May 21, 2011 - 4:50PM

    Every Paki, who loves china, does so because he/she read it in textbooks that China is a ‘friend’ :D. Lets start using the junk inside our skull. They can help Pakistan get rid of load shedding in a few months. But why would they do so? With load shedding, Paki industry is crippled which means China gets a sizable market in Pakistan without signing any formal trade agreement.
    We should neither make enemies, nor friends. We should prioritize national interest, after learning what exactly does it mean. (Right now, we don’t even know the correct definition as apparent from the history of the country).Recommend

  • Pakistani
    May 21, 2011 - 7:33PM

    Can we able to bring down a single drone after this “Big Deal”?? uhhh rather we purchased these fighters from the money earned by selling & killing our own people.

    Not too much blood left in this poor dying nation to be sucked by our Army.Recommend

  • Pakistani
    May 21, 2011 - 7:36PM

    @AHK: Pakistanis are innocent; not chineseRecommend

  • faraz
    May 21, 2011 - 7:50PM

    @shiningeyes

    US doesnt lie in our missile range! Recommend

  • Omar
    May 21, 2011 - 8:31PM

    A decision rightly made…i think what ever capital allocated for education and public welfare by the govt. is spent for it…it may result in something beneficial if off-course it doesn’t make its way to the Swiss banks, which unfortunately it does…a country is nothing without its defense…we need those planes esp. when India is looking forward to buy 156 euro-fighters.Recommend

  • Mubarak
    May 21, 2011 - 9:24PM

    @Abdul Wahab:
    Those swords were probably purchased when he had money etc. He kept the ones he had. He did not go out, borrow money from the Byzantines and buy more. Indeed you must learn from him. Recommend

  • Mubarak
    May 21, 2011 - 9:30PM

    @Ahmad Raza:
    With all your vigilance, did you stop the Americans?Recommend

  • JD
    May 21, 2011 - 9:53PM

    @Yasir Khokhar:

    I agree.. when two neighbors keep fighting others take advantage of that. And this is true for two families living near by as well as for two countries…. This “enemy” feeling is harming growth of both the countries….Recommend

  • Fahad
    May 21, 2011 - 10:18PM

    These 50 jets are vital for pakistan under the current situation. If it wasnt for our nukes and good eqipped military hardware pakistan wouldve seen the same faith as iraq and libya. I see alot of people saying the army should come under civilian control. Theoratically i agree but pratically i totally disagree. Dnt u knw our civilian leaders it would be a disaster to hand complete rule to the civilians. They are all sell outs. The author said education budget is Only 1%. My friend i think the govt should crack down on public sector teachers that r getting paid by sitting at home. Half of public sector school teachers havent even seen the school and r still being payed. Recommend

  • Fahad
    May 21, 2011 - 10:29PM

    China has helped pak in almost all sectors. All our nuclear reactors are made with chinese expertise. China 3 gorges are set to invest in pak for massive projects 7000 mwatt and 8000mwatt project to produce electricity. Thats precisely wat pak needs. Although they have their own interests like gwadar port the most important one. If a direct highway is built from china to gwadar then believe me pak will also benefit from this as well. Just the rent of the ships bayed at gwadar deep sea port will pay off half of our debtsRecommend

  • Akbar
    May 21, 2011 - 10:46PM

    @Abdul Wahab:
    grow up buddyRecommend

  • Majid
    May 21, 2011 - 10:53PM

    JF17 is nothing as compared to US falcons. It is all about filling up pockets.
    If you really want to compare these two machines, you must wait, until China will have an MIT, a Stanford, a Barkeley, a Rensselaer and a Harvard.Recommend

  • eeop
    May 21, 2011 - 11:08PM

    This looks like an indian site to me where people have concluded no threat from the eastern borders. May be high on aman ki asha tunes and too much indian media injected and running on Pakistani soil to actually conclude that. Recommend

  • Shahzad
    May 21, 2011 - 11:09PM

    For those who trust the enemy to not attack, you are foolish. The enemy is always going to attack you when you have discord in your house. The military should always be strong. These JF 17s are worth every penny. Like many have said, its the other parts of the society that have to live up to their responsibilities.

    Watch this: http://www.nbc.com/classic-tv/battlestar-galactica/video/Recommend

  • tahir
    May 21, 2011 - 11:22PM

    I dun get the authors point. Your defence needs are far more important than food security and other stuff. Dun u remember Prophet Mohammad PBUH had swords hung in His house even when He had nothing to eat. Ones defence always take preference.Recommend

  • Sunil Rana
    May 21, 2011 - 11:22PM

    @Ali Akbar Khan: I am sorry but here are some videos from some Pakistani experts who analyse Indian threat to Pakistan.
    By Chief of the Pakistan Air Force Asghar Khan
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K57q_914QAU

    Aasim Sajjad – Professor of History at the prestigious Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS) – discusses the anti-India state ideology of Pakistan

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qaRbRvCgy3E

    Please also search for Dr, Hoodbhoy’s Videos, He is a man who taught me how to serve for humanity.

    I’ll stand against any anti Pakistan thought in India as being an Indian I have the opportunity to do that.
    Hatred will disappear love will prevail. Inshah Allah.

    Your brother with love.Recommend

  • Kamran Bangash
    May 21, 2011 - 11:46PM

    ” How much would that cost us? Between $1 and $1.25 billion. That doesn’t sound awfully expensive for national defence in itself but ……. ”

    But when foreign forces comes deep into our air space, carry out an operation successful and then ring our President and inform him about the operation!!!

    Should we spend more on our defence? Recommend

  • Truthbetold
    May 22, 2011 - 12:56AM

    @fahim:

    While I agree that China is dumping its cheap good on Pakistan and that it hurts local industry and jobs, I disagree with you that China is doing it for its own economic interest. Chinese trade with Pakistan is minuscule compared to its overall trade volume with rest of the world. What is actually happening is that China has been using Pakistan in a geopolitical game of trying to keep India destabilized. It is lot cheaper for China to do this by making Pakistan its proxy in this geopolitical game. Recommend

  • Faisal
    May 22, 2011 - 12:59AM

    Normalize relations with India and reduce the military expenditures. There will always be trouble on the western border with Afghanistan for which Chinese equipment is not a bad compromise. There is no reason why Ind and Pak can’t live peacefully. Obviously easier said than done but not impossible. Recommend

  • May 22, 2011 - 1:05AM

    @ehabs:
    And what is the role of Army in purchase of Fighter Aircrafts JF-17 ???? Just like Indians our own people have gone crazy and have started blaming on Army for everything that is happening in South East Asia, even if a crow dies due to heart attack, Army is responsible. Every Tom Dick and Harrry knows that Army is just a land force and it is PAF that is an air force and needs JF-17, not army.Recommend

  • Truthbetold
    May 22, 2011 - 1:13AM

    @Yasir Khokhar:
    I agree with your overall message. Just want to point out that Pakistan’s defense spending is nearly 65% of the national budget (including pensions and debt servicing on debts accumulated from military purchases) and not 16% as you wrote. Those who think Pakistan should keep spending this huge portion of its national wealth because of threat from India should pause to ask themselves if India really wants to invade Pakistan and take over its territory. If this were true, India would have long ago absorbed Bangladesh. Think about it! Why would India want to absorb Pakistan and add 150 million radical muslims (80% of its population) to its population? Recommend

  • Ajay
    May 22, 2011 - 1:17AM

    @Muhammad Saifullah Khalid:
    Indian had influnce all around without money power or army power..you ignoraxtRecommend

  • Noise
    May 22, 2011 - 2:09AM

    We spend too much on the military. We need to cut the defense budget and the size of the army and spend all that money on education. We need peace with IndiaRecommend

  • Raja
    May 22, 2011 - 2:40AM

    As an Indian I feel some of the Indians posting here advising pakis not to spend money on fighter jets are misguided.

    From the perspective of India’s welfare, pakis are on the right trajectory. They should buy more fighter jets to match India.

    As Bhutto wanted they are on the way to eat only grass. LOL.Recommend

  • A. Aftab
    May 22, 2011 - 3:36AM

    If the 250 total JF-17′s are not procured over the next 10 years or so the PAF will be left with flying 45 year old Mirages, and 30+ year old A-5′s and F-7′s, which are thoroughly obsolete in front of the massive and well equipped IAF.
    To put it in a simple way our 4th Generational component of the PAF currently relies on the 60 or so LM F-16′s only! These 60 F-16′s face more than 70 soon to be upgraded Mirage-2000H’s, as well as 90+ or so Mig-29 9-12′s and the dangerous Su-20MKI numbers are rapidly rising past the 100 mark, as a result of HAL producing them locally. We will be outnumbered in this critical alone category by a factor of more than 4:1.

    Also in this critical category of 4th Gen+ combat aircraft, the IAF outclasses the PAF because of the Su-30′s extraordinary performance and capability.
    Our ancient Mirage III/V airframes, A-5′s and the bulk of the older F-7P’s should have been retired a decade ago, but we have been broke since the beginning of time. This is our only chance of a decent makeover. The JF-17′s come with a substantial improvement across the board in performance & capability over our ancient and exhausted airframes which are beginning to fall out of the sky regularly. No one else would sell to us, and certainly not at these prices that we plan to produce/ induct these JF-17′s at. So there is no other option!

    If the proposed 250+ of these JF-17′s are not acquired over the next decade or so, we might as well shut down the PAF as an irrelevant entity!
    India will be serially producing the FGFA a variant of the 5th Gen PAK-FA Su-50 in the next few years with Russian assistance, and also is spending more than $20 billion in the next 5 years on the IAF……..This has caused alarm in the PAF!
    If the PAF becomes militarily irrelevant, than Pakistan becomes militarily irrelevant. It’s literally that simple. We need to consolidate our position and Pakistan’s leadership is well aware that the end game in Afghanistan is in sight. Once the U.S. leaves the region soon, the threat to our western border ends, leaving us to concentrate on the dangerous imbalance of forces viz a viz India. China is also aware of the changing military/ political situation and is acting accordingly in helping Pakistan address our situation versus India.

    The writing is on the wall ladies and gentlemen…….The new cold war between China and the U.S. will unfold in Asia/ ME, and will engulf us as usual. India is a natural ally of the U.S. in this new war (declared as well on numerous occasions by the U.S. leadership). Pakistan is being largely ignored, and isolated by the U.S. for the last 20+ years now………but we are not naive, and are making preparations to deal with this situation with our friend China.Recommend

  • Imran
    May 22, 2011 - 5:00AM

    This auther have no sense. Pakistan have many old planes which are soon going to be phased out and replacement for those planes are greatly needed, thus the JF-17 planes. India is now no 1 spender in asia for new weapon therefore there is great need for uppgrading and acuiring new equpment.Recommend

  • Waqas
    May 22, 2011 - 6:26AM

    There is no question we need to keep up with our adversaries (India) to survive in this region however how many Aircrafts we need within next six months is debatable. Unfortunately our defense minister or the govt is not competent enough to weigh and decide what best can be managed out of this much money….Recommend

  • mahmood
    May 22, 2011 - 8:16AM

    Every Country has to make the same decision — money spent on defense or something else – the only thing that makes Pakistan different is that it doesn’t seem to have money for the basics (clean water, sanitation, education etc). I would also question why Pakistan would purchase a weapon system that doesn’t seem to help in your current conflict with militants and doesn’t seem up to the task if you end up in a future battle with India. Recommend

  • khan
    May 22, 2011 - 10:43AM

    What else you can get for the price of your computer? your mobile phone? The pizza you eat with your family at weekends? your car? What? Did I hear that these things are indispensable to you and not for “educating” a poor child for welfare?
    And next time you should write “What else you can do when our neighbors buy Eurofighter?” Send the locomotives from Karachi Circular Railway to intercept those war machines?Recommend

  • Rizwan
    May 22, 2011 - 12:08PM

    Yup keep denying the “so-called necessities”, and in a few years from now Pakistan will be (God Forbid) a well-defended barren land of impoverished people.

    I wonder how people, skeptical about “America, Israel, Germany, France, India, Great Britain and rest of the European Union”, can so quickly enlist China to be the bully on their side. After all, China is an impartial international industrialist only interested in selling its own merchandise (JF-17 in this case).

    Only a strong and independent nation can defend itself against domestic and international threats. Beggars just move from one master to the other. In the end Pakistan has to build up its own resources by investing in education, industry and infrastructure with whatever resources it got. Until that this country will keep relying on table scraps of others and everything will come crashing down if the master decides to lick his plates clean or finds a new pet .Recommend

  • Slider
    May 22, 2011 - 12:51PM

    All this spending to scare the Indians? This sounds absoultely absurd to me. India has too much going on for it self to even think about attacking Pakistan. I’m all for a highly secure border, but to spend this amount of money on fighter jets when we have one of the highest rates of illeteracy in the world is ridiculous.

    The only threat to pakistan is from the terrorism we have ‘imported’ over the years due to neglect, and to curb that threat we don’t need fighter jets. What we need is NO American interference, and yes, sorry Zardari, this also means NO American money. I firmly beleive that the day the Americans leave us alone we can resolve many of our issues.

    The opportunity cost of this deal is far too high. The money should be used on education instead.

    A small note: Sympathising with our sorroy situation is not enough! Lets get involved and do our bit. Support TCF or other NGO’s that fight for the right of education!! We are the lucky few in Pakistan..lets make it rain where it counts people!Recommend

  • Sobriquet
    May 22, 2011 - 1:54PM

    @Qasim: Some figures for you: Defence spending (percent of gdp): Japan: 1%, Sweden 1.2%, Germany: 1.4%. In contrast, Japan, Sweden and Germany spend more than 750% on healthcare. Recommend

  • shumayel
    May 22, 2011 - 2:14PM

    people like gulraiz khan have ceased to understand pakistan’s basic problems. a very good thought, but may be very much feasible if it were 1960 or 1990. wake up, its a war for last ten years and bigger problems have come in pakistan face. i believe its a general problem of confusion in which people like gulraiz khan are caught not understanding real issues and harping on the same tone from 1960s.

    and well how about bringing back the corruption money. thats not 1.5 billion or 2 billion $.

    thats an astonishing 1000 billion $ of looted money. how many children will be educated with that. please elaborate. at least these 1.5 billion $ or so arent going into someones pockets. Recommend

  • Abdul Wahab
    May 22, 2011 - 2:33PM

    All those ppl criticizing Ali Akbar khan, shod keep in mind. Has india ever let go of an opportunity to hurt Pakistan. A deciding war is inevitable. With India stopping all the water of Pakistan, wat u gonna do with good health facilities, when there is no food to grow, when the area is barren.
    Did India not threatened us after OBL saga by saying they can strike inside Pakistan like US did (YOU WISH).
    And moreover having bad education or health facilities is not armys fault or its big budget. Its our politicians and civil servants with all the corruption in these institutions. There are 1000s of ghost schools in Pakistan. Which means GOP gave the money for them but they were never built. How is that defence agencies fault.
    I request my Pakistani brothers to think with clear minds. Dun listen to hindus here, they r tryin to press on with their own agenda.
    @Minoj, if we can shoot down your Migs with trainer planes (Sir MM ALAM Episode), with will shoot down ur fifth gen. fighters with JF17.
    May ALLAH guide us ALL.Recommend

  • Abdul Wahab
    May 22, 2011 - 2:35PM

    @ mubarik
    WALLAH Mubarik . You need to research more. Recommend

  • Mirza
    May 22, 2011 - 3:08PM

    Than close PIA and Pakistan steel and start taxing Zardari and Sharif.Recommend

  • Mirza
    May 22, 2011 - 3:16PM

    Pakistan govt. can make many billions in revenue annually if it stop smuggling of Indian goods into Pakistan and state can earn even more money if Pakistan stop importing Indian goods.

    25 million spent on JF-17 are pumped back to society because those are being manufactured in Pakistan.
    Money invested in JF-17 is has the potential to earn back much more in exports.
    JF-17 is saving precious foreign exchange which can be used by children of our politicians.

    Spending any money in education means ghost schools and jobs for violent political activists.

    We need to fix our economy to the position where Musharaf left.Recommend

  • amjad
    May 22, 2011 - 5:53PM

    As long as Pakistan has these outfits with names like LET, TTP, SSP, ETC;does some one really thinks India will take over Pakistan? India would probably erect a fence to defend itself. Remember, India has its own multitude of problems, there is no need for her to pile up more. These, purchases, are only good for country pride. On top, the different outfits Pakistan has all these nuclear devices, which are more than enough to defend. Investment in helicopters, fire tenders, and earth moving equipment could have been much better for civil defence purposes, to meet the chalenges of next earthquake, flooding or any other natural disaster. Otherwise, country will be begging for American help, which everybody hates. It is time to rearrange priorities for the good of common Pakistani, instead of serving the interest of few. .Recommend

  • M. Amjad Dogar
    May 22, 2011 - 11:16PM

    @fahim:
    Pakistan never ex-cogitates and the incrimination lies against China sometimes , at others, the
    European nations. Great motivation for a nation of prattlers. What sort of friendship people of Pakistan expect from others is en enigma! When there is no self respect and no understanding of what life demands , both from religious and worldly point of view, the affairs are obligated to head in the direction they are afoot.Despite all the facts stated by Mr Fahim, the dictum, ‘might is right’, can never be dismissed. Survival is the foremost paramount issue, the attainment of the wares of daily need , the second. Recommend

  • Ramish
    May 22, 2011 - 11:45PM

    @pappu:
    Why do people have to get carried away with whatever they read? I don’t think we should hold anything against China just because they agreed to sell us fighter jets. At the end of the day, it is the government of Pakistan that decided they should go for the deal. It’s high time we realize that putting blame on others won’t get us anywhere.

    China has played an important role in development of Pakistan. They have invested substantially in development of Gawadar Port which would benefit both China and Pakistan. We can’t expect them to be so self-less that they start looking-out for Pakistan’s interests and not taking in account theirs. In the past China also offered to provide assistance and invest in railways of Pakistan but that was refused. We should not in any case, deny the help and the support they have provided. If Pakistan decides to stick to electricity produced by rental power plants and does not want to shift to an inexpensive alternative by exploiting its coal reserves in Thar. We can’t blame that on China, can we?

    So it’s important for Pakistan to stick to its old friends and make new ones. Having said that it is also important to realize that in the end it’s us who run the affairs of the country, we can’t expect China, America or Saudi Arabia to run it for us.Recommend

  • manish
    May 23, 2011 - 12:24AM

    @Ali Akbar Khan:
    Mr Ali Akbar Khan , why dont you sleep peacefully , why should India be a threat to you ?
    We got so much of development to take care in India, we dont have time to attack Pakistan. India is not Pakistan’s enemy. Your real enemy is your own military and govt. They have starved your people and while they spend a life of luxury. Take any influential person in Pakistan and see what his children are doing? You will never find them fanatical or participating in anti Indian sloganism. They have well settled families whereas ordinary citizens of Pakistan suffer the most. Wake up before its too late!!!!!! Recommend

  • Chotta Chetan
    May 23, 2011 - 3:01AM

    BTW do you guys know PLAAF is yet to induct these into their own squadrons? Recommend

  • Michael
    May 23, 2011 - 3:26AM

    Pakistan needs to return to the US the dollar amount spent on this deal. After all, if you can afford these. You dont need the money. Recommend

  • A. Aftab
    May 23, 2011 - 5:23AM

    It is a ridiculous notion that only our nuclear assets are sufficient for defending us. What nonsense!

    during the Kargil debacle it was our conventional forces which took the brunt of facing the enemy.

    Nukes stayed parked at Sargodha and Kahuta…….at no point did either side threaten to use nukes. However, both threatened to invade on another and there was a lot of fighting between the Indian and Pak ground forces.

    If nukes alone guaranteed security and well being, all you nay sayers and gullible people on this board who oppose procuring these warplanes for the PAF can perhaps explain why the arms industries for conventional forces form the biggest and most profitable/ wasteful business on this planet?

    You don’t go into war relying on your nukes. You go into battle on the back of your conventional forces!Recommend

  • bc49er
    May 23, 2011 - 6:35AM

    Please do a quick Google search on “Pakistan military economy”. Every pakistani man, women and child is a slave of the Pakistani military. Recommend

  • Whispering willows
    May 23, 2011 - 10:14AM

    I find the suggestion that India will invade Pakistan a laughable suggestion. We are massive and complex democracy; with enough issues of our own to resolve. We would not like to waste our time fighting pointless wars.

    For those of you who fear India’s arms purchases; I would like to clarify that these

    Are replacement aircraft, for the mig’s that are too old to fly.
    Will still keep the air force below it sanctioned strength of 39 squadrons.
    Is driven by the continual modernization of the the Chinese and Pakistani air forces.

    If you still feel we are out invade Pakistan, look at the history over the last 60 years. Every time Pakistan and India have tried to build a working relationship, they have been betrayed by the Pakistani army or ISI.

    Think of kargil, the attack on India’s parliament, the Mumbai attacks….. Recommend

  • Waqas
    May 23, 2011 - 1:24PM

    To all those who harp that Pakistan has no threat from India:

    Can you tell me then why India is growing and investing in its military, buying tanks, APCs, fighter planes and arming its military to the teeth… to counter China? thats the biggest BS of the century. India knows its tanks and troops can not defend against Chinese aggression, infact they will be beaten hollow and run with its tail between its legs just like in 1962, and tanks and APCs cant climb Himalayan range…
    And all its troops and focus is on western border i.e. Pakistan.

    Stop living in fool’s paradise, its only for Indians… ;-)Recommend

  • Indian
    May 23, 2011 - 2:50PM

    JF-17 blunder: What else you can get for the price of 50 fighter jets?

    Scrap Value!! If the jets get burnt in the Talib attack, you are left only with junk. Anyway, the JF-17 is junk which even China Airforce is not going to buy! :(Recommend

  • Zaheer Ahmed
    May 23, 2011 - 3:09PM

    A good piece of writing.Recommend

  • BILAL
    May 23, 2011 - 3:29PM

    And still the Americans will barge in at will.Recommend

  • Sajjad
    May 23, 2011 - 7:00PM

    Do JF-17 fighter jets match with fighters in the Indian Airforce ?
    ?Recommend

  • Anonymous
    May 23, 2011 - 10:29PM

    @fahim: +1, “own/self interest” +1 “no self respect”Recommend

  • JAS
    May 23, 2011 - 10:31PM

    Profounding article. As a Pakistani I must say that the challenges are far more intense and intrusive than buying JF-17s. STOP IT PAKISTAN, India wants to excel as much as we DO.Recommend

  • Wisdom Chambers
    May 24, 2011 - 5:22AM

    I don’t what point the author is trying to make here and I also don’t understand the non-educated comments made by the bloggers here…. I don’t know why we are mixing one necessity with the other and instead of hitting the nail in the head we just hitting the hammer else where..

    There is no argument against the necessity of education, health and public services but it does not mean that you dump another necessity on the face of it. Defense is as important as the other listed necessities especially when you are living in a region so hostile and so volatile. The need of the hour here is not to cut our defense expenditure but to make sure that our economy generates enough money so that we can increase allocations to education, health and other public services as well. The real problem is tax evasion, corruption, mismanagement and non-professionalism in our Government sectors. Lets just compare all these.

    Total Defense budget including extra allocations = RS 550 billion
    Tax evasion and corruption in FBR (Est.) = RS 700 billion (Source: Ex Finance minister)
    Funds allocated Govt. Commercial subsidiaries (PIA, Railway, steel mills etc) = RS 250 billion
    Corruption and mismanagement in Govt. Departments Est.): RS 600 billion

    Only the corruption in FBR is eating up more money than your whole defense expenditure and here i have not mentioned our pathetic Tax to GDP ratio of 9% and i am not even considering taxing large farmers.

    Now also lets compare our defense budget with our neighbors and countries with whom we expect our armed forces to lock horns with:
    USA: US$ 700 billion
    China: US$ 130 billion
    India: US$ 35 billion
    Iran: US$ 8 billion
    Afghanistan: US$ 500 million*
    Pakistan: US$ 6 billion
    (
    *Note: Afghanistan has no airforce or navy and no tank force and also it is to be noted that Mr. John Kerry while briefing the US defence committee of the house said that after withdrawl of International forces Afghanistan will need US$ 10 billion per year to maintain 400,000 strong armed forces).
    Also note that the US budget does not allocate extra allocation of US$ 10 billion per month of operations in Afghanistan.

    Now look at all these figures, verify these and tell me what is the need of the day. Not that we sacrifice Education, health or defence but the need of the day is to increase our competence, eradicate corruption and discourage tax evasion and to bring our public sector commercial entities like Railway, PIA, Pakistan Steel and WAPDA/PEPCO to start earning profits instead of demanding bailouts.Recommend

  • sid
    May 24, 2011 - 5:54AM

    good to see many of sensible people who believe India is not pakistans problem. Believe me we all want Better things for ourselves and our children. Hop you as country as people find peace and live happily. india and pakistan can be more of equal trade partner… wrt CHINA all who think they are in for their interest you are right.They only see money, however they get it.
    I hope voices of change and sense ,voices for economic upliftment prevail in Pakistan. its good for India. A stable, prosperous and forward looking pakistanRecommend

  • May 24, 2011 - 6:00AM

    Good article. Reminds me of something I read recently – about how our country’s rulers need to have an “honest conversation” with us – the people of Pakistan. http://t.co/24B4Ypo It made me wish our PM would make such a speech Recommend

  • Krishna
    May 24, 2011 - 7:30AM

    India is no threat to Pakistan. Majority Indians want peace. No one taught us to hate Pakistan.Recommend

  • Suspicion
    May 24, 2011 - 9:32AM

    Seriously, stop obsessing over India. It is quite apparent to everyone thanks to the United States latest epic fails (not to mention the ones that came before) that occupation of a foreign country is a sure way to economic ruin in this day and age.

    Its not like the soldiers can pillage the silverware and steal the goats and turn a profit. In this day and age you have to own it, develop it, market it, and have buyers, to ‘win’. Otherwise your just spending and failing. We in the USA do not feel any sort of accomplishment from the occupation of Iraq. A bad decision that we cant seem to accept was a mistake. But in the case of Afghanistan, a dirty job we had to do.

    Osama Bin Laden wasn’t the last target. Do not mistake this, every person in the United States lived the horror of 9/11, those old enough can remember how the room smelled, how the sunlight was, exactly what we were doing at that moment. For us it was the first drone strike, it was the first taking of family and the first disgrace in the eyes of god. If you think its a game to be played, your in deep deep trouble. If it is found that Pakistan was at all behind Al Quada publicly. Think you have enough nukes to handle the US Navy? When we here people complain about our methods, we just grit our teeth and think “Your methods, enjoy. Soon we will be done, you will be dead. And maybe love can spread.”. This is from a west coast liberal democrat, no lover of Bush whatsoever. But we are not as naive as you think. Especially after finding Satan living in Abottabad. Better you don’t play these games, we are far better at it… (hint: the three periods should seem an ominous threat if you have notions of challenging the United States in the ability to kill without mercy).

    But that said, we are going broke :oP

    For your own good, so you don’t go down the silly road some have, spend your money on something that returns a profit. Education is a good bet, more skilled workers brings more national productivity guaranteed. No one is threatening any developed nations with military occupation, because they are developed and support each other. Maybe go for that education thing instead of new shiny toys every 10 years that cost you your ability to be that developed nation.Recommend

  • foxawan
    May 24, 2011 - 11:19AM

    I might not be a military analyst but I do know one thing, having a plane and requiring it to fulfil certain obligations requires technology. Sadly we don’t have any of our indigenous technology. JF-17 is just a plane with which we can beef up our number but to provide us superioty is just a joke. The plane won’t be able to handle MIG-29 on a given day let alone SU-30 mki which had a great showing in RED Flag in America. HAL Tejas with its entire problem is still a far better plane as compared to JF-17. Technology worked on Tejas is going to provide long lasting benefits as compared to JF-17 as we already had the technology in hand yet were not able to produce a similar plane as equal to even our F-16 (older models). Why am i stating technology is a must? Well simple, with SU-30 mki payload and powerful radar it can easily target and engaged our planes with impunity. In dogfights if it comes to that, it can out manoeuvre our planes. With the largest sell of any kind in the procurement of latest planes India chose Rafael instead of any American planes. Even when they offered a joint venture for future in the form of F-35′s which is a scaled down version of F-22. A wise desicion in the overall scheme of things. With PAKFA in the corner, five years or ten years from now, India would be incorporating fifth generation stealth plane while maintaining a fleet of SU-30 mki’s along with Rafael. I know all the military talk is useless but what good are your planes if you are not going to use them. The vision is not for Pakistan but for global say. Soon the carriers group will be formed there and in china while Pakistan will be left licking the shoes of anyone willing to help us. Spend wisely is the key. Budget should be somewhere in the realm of having priorities. Yes our defence is our priority but realistically it won’t be in the long run. They don’t need to destroy us; they have us doing that for them. So they will wait to bid their time and in time the results would be written in the stars. Nuclear or no nuclear, we are going swimming against the current while the world watches us, jokes about us and tells us that we are indeed stupid. China only wants the warm water that is where the oil is. Russia wanted that, didn’t get it, lost the economic battle, military wise they still had a big army but economically they lost. Read the history boys, uthaman empire was lost the day it stopped progressing military wise they were still strong, economically very weak. They sided with the Germans and see the results. Wake up is the call. Please do wake upRecommend

  • Abhigyan
    May 24, 2011 - 1:13PM

    @Nasrat Baloch:
    Why in the name of God do you want to do that. Do you think Islam is in danger in India. We have more muslims in India than the population of Pakistan and we don’t see riots, we provide equal opportunity to everyone irrespective of their religion, caste and creed. Sitting there it is very easy to make a impression in your mind but my friend reality is very different. You don’t have to take my words. Read any international newspaper or visit bbc. It is high time that you learn to live in co-existence because most of the religion will stay here. I don’t believe that your so called jihad should be allowed on the expense of hunger, poverty and illiteracy. You should first have a jihad to eradicate these 3 evils and then if you are still not satified & happy, you can plan for something else.Recommend

  • Shazoo
    May 24, 2011 - 4:09PM

    they are helpless how can they defend the country !!Recommend

  • Ramish Khan
    May 25, 2011 - 1:57AM

    All the Indians who are writing here and think that India does not pose a threat to Pakistan should tell their governments to cut their defense budget. Everyone in Pakistan and I am sure in India too do not want war with each other but that does not change the fact that we have fought in the past and might so in the future. Expenditures on defense should only be seen as a precautionary and preventative action. Besides, Pakistan is in war with terrorism and different weapons in the past have been used by the armed forces to carry out operations against terrorists. However, India faces no such threat from any front but they’re still spending extensively on defense. So if you guys think cutting expenditures on defense is an important step towards the peace in the region then I believe you should start with amendments in your country first.Recommend

  • May 25, 2011 - 10:11PM

    stop being so cynical guys…Gulraiz was trying to make a very valid point here, our ledership is spending blindly and very unwisely. the article is very illuminating. threat or no threat your first priority should be internal stability, if you are so weak from within that random people can attack your bases from within the country then adding shiny JF-17s wont solve your problems. Gulraiz’s point is that you have to basically solve the basic problems that this country is facing : education, health, basic utilities. Recommend

  • hassan
    Jun 2, 2011 - 6:25PM

    the author is clearly missing the bigger picture.. to compare the necessity of national Air defense with other problems of a developing nation…specially when you have such a strategic location and your surronded with enemies like India and USA and northern alliance in afghanistan……….i see the air superiority the essential ingredient to have an upper hand in todays art of warfare.

    Admitting the fact that we do not have basic health facilities and education and infrastructure facilities doesn’t give the right to cut short your defense specially after what usa did to Taliban in Afghanistan and Sadaam regime in Iraq and the Abottabad incident in Pakistan.. * Secondly if we look at the militant attack on anti submarine aircrafts.. you will clearly know our enemies doesnt want to have air or naval superiority.*.. the Quaid laid solid foundation to our national defense and people like the author of this article are spreading hatred towards our armed forces and towards the spending.. . if the author is that inclined in pointing out wastage of resources why hasn’t it pointed out any meaningful wastage anything besides defense…. mark my words when you don’t have strong guards and defense you will always be an easy catch for the invaders this has been the biggest reality of this and ancient times..those who failed to recognize its need have vanquished without a trace… take a look at the ethic massacres in Bosnia and Kosovo….Any amount spent on defense is never waste it will pay you back when you are really in need of it… Air superiority can not be archived without planning it ahead of 50 years…Recommend

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