Saturday, April 30, 2016

Donald Trump Quotes

1.   “All the women flirted with meconsciously or unconsciously. That’s to be expected.”
2.   “When was the last time you saw a Chevrolet in Tokyo?”
3.    “A certificate of live birth is not the same thing by any stretch of the imagination as a birth certificate.”
4.   “Laziness is a trait in the blacks.”
5.   “The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive.”
6.   “Tiny children are not horses.”
7.   “People are tired of these nice people.”
8.    “Free trade is terrible. Free trade can be wonderful if you have smart people. But we have stupid people.”
9.   “The only kind of people I want counting my money are little short guys that wear yarmulkes every day.”
10.     “I’ll tell you, it’s big business. If there is one word to describe Atlantic City, it’s big business. Or two words: big business.”
11.      “You know, it really doesn’t matter what the media write as long as you’ve got a young and beautiful piece of ass.”
12.     “Well, somebody’s doing the raping! Who’s doing the raping? Who’s doing the raping?”
13.     “Did you notice that baby was crying and I didn’t get angry? Not once. Did you notice that? That baby was driving me crazy.”
14.     “In life you have to rely on the past, and that’s called history.”
15.     “Sometimes your best investments are the ones you don’t make.”
16.     “One of the key problems today is that politics is such a disgrace. Good people don’t go into government.”
17.      “Part of the beauty of me is that I’m very rich.”
18.     “I try to learn from the past, but I plan for the future by focusing exclusively on the present.”
19.     “The point is that you can’t be too greedy.”
20.     “The 1990s sure aren’t like the 1980s.”
21.     “I saw a report yesterday. There’s so much oil, all over the world, they don’t know where to dump it. And Saudi Arabia says, ‘Oh, there’s too much oil.’ Do you think they’re our friends? They’re not our friends.


Friday, April 29, 2016

Book Review: Monsoon War (the war of 1965)

From our regular contributor, Dr Hamid Hussain. (btw, maybe the gentlemanly conduct of both sides would be better described as chivalry?)

Book Review – The Monsoon War
Hamid Hussain

Lieutenant General Tajindar Shergill and Captain Amarinder Singh’s book The Monsoon war is an encyclopedic work on 1965 India-Pakistan war.  It is a detailed account of operations of all phases of 1965 war from the perspectives of junior officers.  Authors have used extensive Indian material as well as Pakistani sources to provide a detailed picture of the conflict.

Book starts with the background of the conflict that culminated in open war in 1965.  This is followed by details about the Run of Kutch conflict that was prelude to the war.  Chapter five is especially a good read as it provides details of armor equipment of both armies and advantages and disadvantages.  This helps the non-military reader to understand strengths and weaknesses of rival armies during the conflict. Authors provide details of some of the challenges faced by Indian army in the aftermath of Indo-China conflict of 1962. Rapid expansion of Indian army resulted in poorly armed and poorly trained formations.  If Indian army was producing ‘nine months wonders’ for Indian army officer corps, Pakistan army was producing ‘pre-mature’ officers from Officers Training School with only eight months of training.  In early 1960s, Pakistani officers were not happy with the pay as it had remained stagnant as well as lack of accommodations.  When troops were used to construct accommodations, there was resentment among soldiers as they saw it below their dignity to work as laborers.  Pakistani tanks had not carried out any tank firing for over two years as training ammunition provided by Americans was hoarded as ‘war reserve’. However, when war started majority of officers and soldiers on both sides fought to the best of their abilities.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Operation Z to A

Dr Hamid Hussain on operation Zarb e Azb:

Following was at the request of a good friend and well informed Pakistani officer who has a more pessimistic view about ongoing operations.  As expected, even in army there are diverse opinions depending on the knowledge and experience of particular officer.  In my interactions I found quite a broad range.  On one end, some have already declared victory and planning victory parades and elevating their favorite senior officers to high pedestals, others are more realistic and know that the water is more muddier when you get close to it and still others who are quite pessimistic as regional dynamics are beyond Pakistan’s control. This is not unusual as every conflict generates different views in the military that is tasked with tackling the problem.  I incorporated some views of tribesmen (most keep their thoughts to themselves as environment is not very conducive for a candid discussion).  In addition, many non-Pakistanis are kind enough to candidly share their perspectives and I incorporated that perspective even if I don’t fully agree with that. 


Pakistan Army Military Operations – Summary

Hamid Hussain

War is uncertainty, characterized by friction, chance and disorder”.            Clausewitz

From 2003 to 2008, for a variety of reasons, Pakistani state gradually lost control over federally administered tribal areas.  The reasons were more related to strategic myopia at the highest level rather than strength of the militants. It took a while before military leadership understood the nature of the threat and started more professional planning, training and overhauling doctrine to face the new threat.  The nature of modern militaries is such that from conception to application on the ground takes time.