Kayani lobbying to keep key defence role: WSJ Report

Published: October 6, 2013

Chief of Army Staff General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani. PHOTO: AFP

ISLAMABAD: Chief of Army Staff General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani is lobbying to keep a key defence role and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is considering the request, military and civilian officials told The Wall Street Journal (WSJ).

Kayani steps down as army chief next month after serving twice the normal three-year term for the position. He has reportedly asked for a further one or two years on the job, according to serving and retired military officials.

According to the WSJ report, Kayani is prepared to “accept a revamped Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee job, currently a largely ceremonial post that would be given more authority, or to become defence adviser to the government.”

The report further cited officials saying that he could also be made ambassador to the US.

A military source told WSJ that “Kayani wants authority over military appointments and troop movement added to the position.”

“Kayani is using his office to say that he’s the guy who can control North Waziristan, he’s the one who can handle what is happening with India,” the report quoted a retired army officer as saying.

“With all this going on, he’s saying now is not the time for a change of leadership.”

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Reader Comments (50)

  • Azeem
    Oct 6, 2013 - 1:09PM

    Living in the UK for many years and I haven’t once heard a news about the army chief of this country. Whereas the news about ours is so frequent, it sounds like another auto-elected political party which does not sit in the parliament but has all the decision-making powers!

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  • Voice of Gilgit
    Oct 6, 2013 - 1:19PM

    This is the wish of Marshala LEGACY, anyway ideally he should retired with respect and give chance to the other suitable candidate with full power to strengthen the institution.

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  • A-No.1
    Oct 6, 2013 - 1:38PM

    If the general thinks that there is no one better suited then himself then he has failed in his duty to groom future army chiefs etc. He should exit and enjoy the family business.

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  • Oct 6, 2013 - 1:41PM

    All General, Beaurucrats, Chief Justices, Vice Chancelor or any other high ups are to go home after completion of service. Population is increasing day by day. No Retired offikcers be given any post in embassy or in Govt. Pakistan is in trouble with those people who are serving. Kindly do other jobs but do not desire to be given top slot. There is no use of keeping generlas retired on duty. Please go to home and play cricket and join any club but do not play with future of the nation. This country is for poor people who are being killed but no one has been punished for their crimes.

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  • Muhammad Ahsan KHAN
    Oct 6, 2013 - 1:45PM

    @Azeem:

    Army is an independent state in the State of Pakistan.

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  • Atif nazar
    Oct 6, 2013 - 2:03PM

    Why on earth army officers are still able to think that they are necessary for Pakistan’s survival despite having repeatedly destroying it economically, socially, politically and geographically for the last 66 years. Do they have no brains at all or what?Recommend

  • Abdullah
    Oct 6, 2013 - 2:14PM

    he should definitely be given a strong portfolio, as he was the man who bring mian nawaz sharif in power…he should be obliged as well ..;)

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  • Zalmai
    Oct 6, 2013 - 2:17PM

    The more things change, the more they stay the same. Typical mindset of an insecure security state.

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  • Ahmad
    Oct 6, 2013 - 2:18PM

    We need an Army Chief who will keep these corrupt politicians in line. Kiyani is too soft.

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  • Asif
    Oct 6, 2013 - 2:19PM

    Make an example. Send him home. If only Pakistan had this courage … I’m pretty sure the will get what he is looking for.

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  • Ali
    Oct 6, 2013 - 2:19PM

    Kayani is a failure in terms of security. Look where we are now compared to when he wasnt Chief.
    He should retire and let it go.
    Unfortunately, it seems thats not going to happen.

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  • Ahmad
    Oct 6, 2013 - 2:20PM

    @Atif nazar

    As opposed to our democratic rulers who have done 1000X times worse.

    Find me one Civilian government better than Ayub Khan’s, go ahead I’ll wait…

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  • Abdullah
    Oct 6, 2013 - 2:21PM

    Smart move by Kiyani. He wants to retain the control of the army affairs via a much strong JCS role, and at the same time improve his image in public of leaving/retiring as COAS. Sad, but why our people in power do not want to relinquish the position in an honorable manner.

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  • ali ahmed
    Oct 6, 2013 - 2:31PM

    This basic mistake was giving extension for 3 years…he is now over age …another bad decision of Musarraf making him COAS

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  • aqib
    Oct 6, 2013 - 2:39PM

    One never wants to leave power-human nature(even Tony Blair had to be pushed out)…in recent history only Nelson Mandela has left power willingly when the time came. The reason was that he towers above the post that he had(others sustains themselves with these posts and their associated privileges)

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  • hmm
    Oct 6, 2013 - 2:50PM

    There will be a major discontent in the army if he becomes the joint chief of army staff, so i highly doubt that he’d be given this post! Most probably he’ll be going to Washington DC as an ambassador. As for who destroyed Pakistan – well lets not get into the nitty gritty of the things because all of our elite class has washed its hands in ruining this beautiful country! be it generals, bureaucrats, big industrialists, landlords, politicians etc. P.S Only a non-patriot fool would say that without our army Pakistan would be safe & prosper.

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  • Tayyab
    Oct 6, 2013 - 3:09PM

    Very Surprised after reading this

    “Kayani is using his office to say that he’s the guy who can control North Waziristan, he’s the one who can handle what is happening with India,” the report quoted a retired army officer as saying”

    If General Kayani Think that he is only the best option, then he definitely failed to accomplish his job. He must step down from this position and give all the jobs to some one else.

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  • farrukh
    Oct 6, 2013 - 3:19PM

    Every country has an Army. Pakistan Armay has a country.

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  • Feroz
    Oct 6, 2013 - 3:24PM

    Under Kayani’s leadership terrorism has flourished and spread across the breadth of the land. Forget about flushing out terrorists, he has not been able to flush out Jihadi’s from within the ranks of the Army either. He should have been sacked immediately after the discovery of OBL, adjacent to his Military academy. He has already had an extension in service, in the process nixing the promotion prospects of many officers. Now he wants to be rewarded for his incompetence — ridiculous. He should be gracefully put to pasture and allowed to enjoy his Golf.

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  • JD
    Oct 6, 2013 - 3:28PM

    The bodies grow old … the wrinkles appear … the youthful presence fades away… but the hunger for power always remain.

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  • aaaaa
    Oct 6, 2013 - 3:44PM

    “Kayani is using his office to say that he’s the guy who can control North Waziristan, he’s the one who can handle what is happening with India.”

    He’s failed in controlling North Waziristan for a decade now, and Sharif’s policy with India is exactly the opposite of what Kayani wants. He should go home now. WIll be very disappointed if his role is extended any further.

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  • Jani
    Oct 6, 2013 - 3:49PM

    “Kayani wants authority over military appointments and troop movement added to the position” well what else you need to control the whole Army even after retirement .

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  • Murad Malik
    Oct 6, 2013 - 3:58PM

    @farrukh: dude please.Not now ok. You can write all that crap later, right now we have bigger problems to deal with, then to discuss Cliches like the one you wrote. Grow up please

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  • tayyab
    Oct 6, 2013 - 4:19PM

    go kiyani goRecommend

  • Omer
    Oct 6, 2013 - 4:22PM

    Kayani Sahab Jaan Deyo!
    Saadhi Vaari Aan Deyo!

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  • ahmad
    Oct 6, 2013 - 4:24PM

    No one is indispensible especially in the well deciplined institute like army.
    Creating for the present chief a new postition will raise question on the professionallsm of army as an institute.

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  • polpot
    Oct 6, 2013 - 4:25PM

    No wonder the evil India is so critical to the Pakistani establishment
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    No India no endless extensions:)

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  • Kashif Naqvi
    Oct 6, 2013 - 5:35PM

    Kayani sahab, please go home with dignity. What is it with our men in high places? they feel that they are the only one that can put things right, and the person replacing them is incompetent. Sir, the fault is with you. You should have groomed the man under your command to take up the baton when your times comes up, Sad that time and time again we find ourselves in the same old mess!. Why can’t we just let go when the time comes? Is it some error in our genes, I wonder?

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  • Zulfiqar Baig
    Oct 6, 2013 - 5:58PM

    This COAS could not stop drone attacks, so we don’t want him anymore…

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  • FAISAL RIZVI
    Oct 6, 2013 - 6:31PM

    IS HE INDISPENSABLE?

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  • Pakistani Ostrich
    Oct 6, 2013 - 6:41PM

    This WSJ article goes to show how ignorant they are of reality in pakistan. The khakis never lobby to the ‘bloody’ civilians in pakistan, the khakis demand, threaten or ‘request’ with a caveat, ‘give me what we want or else…”

    Kayani is using his office to say that he’s the guy who can control North Waziristan, he’s the one who can handle what is happening with India,”

    What has he done with NW during so many years as COAS and as a head of ISI? If what’s going on in NW up until now is ‘controlling’ than we are better off retiring gen. kayani before his term ends!

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  • Muhammad Ahsan KHAN
    Oct 6, 2013 - 6:53PM

    Why the Chief Justice of Supreme Court is not taking a Suo Moto against Kiyani for his total failure against the Terrorism and the Terrorists?

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  • Luqman Hafeez
    Oct 6, 2013 - 7:03PM

    Though the general is not in my good books, I still feel that this story seems to be pretty lame.

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  • saeed
    Oct 6, 2013 - 7:40PM

    Kayani is not the solution but rather the problem from his first day….. Had he been a successful and competent officer , Pakistan would not be in the place where it stands now……remember he was the person incharge of all the affairs relating to defence and foreign policy (yes foreign policy my dears) …… But look it now…..where are we ????

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  • Ch. Allah Daad
    Oct 6, 2013 - 7:58PM

    @Azeem:
    Because UK is of the people, for the people and by the people. Pakistan is of the army, for the army and by the army.

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  • Pmahmud
    Oct 6, 2013 - 8:30PM

    With all you people critical of Kiyani, I would disagree. It is upto NS to decide and right now he needs somebody with experience in military affairs and who had to deal with external actors active in the neighborhood up close. It is immaterial what position is offered. He could be special assistant to the PM or some other position.His cool ability to deal with with Zardari under tremendous pressure would be plus.
    No need to listen to what foreign interest want.

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  • Oct 6, 2013 - 8:31PM

    Why does it always have to come down to personalities, why never institutions?

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  • nrmr44
    Oct 6, 2013 - 8:49PM

    Kayani should NOT be allowed to go home. Post him to India as ambassador!

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  • kardar
    Oct 6, 2013 - 9:31PM

    Kayani has done the right thing by announcing his retirement.It will be good for both the country and its armed forces

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  • Ammar
    Oct 6, 2013 - 10:22PM

    @ all the Pseudo-intellectuals here including prestigious WSJ:

    Few hours after this learned thread in discussion, Kayani announces no interest in extension.

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  • Observer
    Oct 6, 2013 - 11:23PM

    As Charles de Gaulle once said, “The graveyards are full of indispensable men”.

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  • Jibran
    Oct 6, 2013 - 11:32PM

    PMLN fed this news to WSJ.

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  • TMM
    Oct 7, 2013 - 3:21AM

    @Muhammad Ahsan KHAN:
    Army is an independent state in the Dependent State of Pakistan.

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  • Ghostrider
    Oct 7, 2013 - 8:46AM

    Boo hoo WSJ…so much for spreading negativity and baseless negativity..he is retiring on Nov 27

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  • Farhan
    Oct 7, 2013 - 9:36AM

    Hahaha shows how credible the WSJ is. Commentators taking this gossip for fact and building grand conspiracy theories around it: please face-palm yourselves.

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  • S A KAMAL
    Oct 7, 2013 - 7:27PM

    This is the only position in Government job where an employee has the luxury to decide whether he likes to stay or retire. We offer this facility either in the name of larger national interest or for continuity of policy.

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  • Abulkhair Sarhandi
    Oct 7, 2013 - 8:51PM

    You are selective in publishing comments. I think you should stop asking for any comments.

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  • Hassan Rizvi
    Oct 8, 2013 - 9:32AM

    I am surprised at how many people unquestioningly believe whatever foreign newspapers write about us given their record of never truly questioning their own leaders. They have always hated Kayani because he did not give them the leeway they were always pressuring him to concede.

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  • Oct 8, 2013 - 5:57PM

    As I said you are very selective in your comment. Print my original comment if you are not. As for Mr Rizvi’s comment what about enemy ( USA is as Big Enemy as India ) helicopters flying in Abbotabad ? What about Kayan’s extended service at USA’s ” request” and the list goes on. I want my original comment published. It is not against national interest. Indeed it is IN the national interest of Pakistani nation.

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  • Oct 8, 2013 - 6:10PM

    If I am not wrong you are a Hindu. From India. We are all called Pakkies in white Anglo Saxon countries. Not respectable term spoken by not respectable people.

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