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Raheel Sharif – Top General of the World

The current Chief of Chief Staff Gen. Raheel Sharif is perhaps the most powerful and the most popular Army Chief in the history of Pakistan. He is widely acknowledged as the savior of Pakistan mainly due to the accomplishments of the Armed Forces under his regime. 27 November 2013, Raheel Sharif was appointed as the 15th Chief of Army Staff of the Pakistan Army by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and the country’s situation under his command improved significantly. Pakistan was a terror ridden country with the terrorist organization Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) seemed unstoppable. Suicide bombing had become a routine and this had crippled the economy badly. Pakistan was moving fast towards being labeled as a failed state and situation had become hopeless. This is the time when Gen. Raheel Sharif acquired office as the Chief of Army staff and turned things around for the entire nation.
Chief among the achievements under his regime is the success of Operation Zarb-eAzb. Operation Zarb-e-Azbwas initiated in June 2014 to eradicate militants from every corner of North Waziristan. The operation was to serve as an aggressive response to the deadly attack conducted by TTP militants, on Jinnah International Airport,earlier that month. This operation served as a breath of fresh air for a nation in the grip of death and turmoil. It provided the people of Pakistan with new hope and it proved to be a step towards a better future.
Zarb-e-Azbwas a display of resolve against terrorism and it signified a strategic shift in terms of Pakistan’s internal policies signaled a strategic shift for Pakistan’s internal terrorism policies. This operation was enough to silence the World powers which kept asking Pakistan to do more in terms ofTerrorism. The objective of this terrorism was made clear from the beginning and it was to eliminate all terrorist without any discrimination. This operations proved successful in curbing terrorism hence had a positive impact on the overall situation of the country with a 70 percent decline in terrorist activities when compared with 2012 apart from this, due to this operation, safe havens and weapons deposits of terrorist groups like Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan and Lashkar-e-Jhangvi were considerably weakened.
Zarb-e-Azb signaled a strategic shift for Pakistan’s internal terrorism policies. The international community had long charged Pakistan with providing safe haven to select militants — those fighting in Afghanistan and who do not pose a direct threat to, and perhaps even support, the interests of Pakistan’s government– and Zarb-e-Azb attempted to prove that Pakistan was, in fact, targeting all militants equally. There would be no more turning a blind eye to the terrorist activities of “good” militants.
Operation Zarb-e-Azm intensified significantly after the attack on Army Public School Peshawar, on December 16, 2014. Militants stormed the Army Public School in Peshawar, brutally executing almost 150 students and staff. In response, the government lifted the moratorium on the death penalty, leading to the death by hanging of 180 alleged terrorists. Once again the swift response of COAS Gen Raheel Sharif left the nation awestruck. He rallied the political leadership together that renewed the nation’s will and determination to bring all terrorists as well as their abettors, facilitators and sympathizers to justice.
In relation with these efforts to curb terrorism, Karachi operation is another success story. The metropolitan city of Pakistan had become the home of the worst form of crime syndicates which were hell bent on destroying it. Karachi operations resulted in the disruption of mafias and militants’ and now stand on the verge of total elimination. The peace that ensued as a result of this operation provided a much needed breather to the Karachi, the mini Pakistan. Their renewed hope and confidence in their armed forces was displayed in the celebrations of 14th August which was celebrated with vigor and enthusiasm. Furthermore, 6th September’s parade elevated the spirits of millions of Pakistanis and displayed the strength of Pakistan to the whole world. On that day he sent a clear message to our enemies by stating “If the enemy ever resorts to any misadventure, regardless of its size and scale, it will have to pay an unbearable cost.” He further went to say “Whether it is cold start or hot start. We are ready.” This comment directly addressed the Indian Cold start strategy the objective of which was to attack Pakistan from the country’s eight soft bellies, lined across the border we shared with India.
All the achievements under Gen Raheel Sharif’s tenure prove that he is perhaps one of the most successful army leaders in Pakistan’s history, therefore, he is considered one of ten top Generals’ of the world. Also, it proves that he is a valiant soldier who is ready to defend his motherland at all costs. However, the thought that his tenure will end in November 2016 is something which our political leadership must reconsider. If extension is something he doesn’t desire, being a man of honor, the political leadership should consider extending the term of COAS and make it of four years so that Gen. Raheel Sharif is able to finish what he started.

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