There are no two opinions about the fact that the country is confronted with an unprecedented economic and political crisis amid growing threats to its security and integrity due to internal and external factors. The entire nation is caught in the whirlpool of never-ending anxiety and despondency. It is, indeed, a very worrying situation for the nation, which is looking for a saviour to winch it out of the quagmire. The ray of the required hope was lit by the Chief of the Army Staff General Asim Munir as he delivered an all-encompassing, thoughtful and reassuring address at PMA Kakul on the occasion of passing out parade. His reiteration about the Army’s commitment to preserve and defend national unity, uphold the sanctity of the constitution and stick to its constitutional role was a much-needed discourse in the prevailing circumstances, which has cleared the haze where the Army stands as a state institution. It was not only a reiteration of the commitment of the Army to play its constitutional role in the prevailing circumstances but also a strong warning to the internal and external enemies of the country who were doing their utmost to create fissures between the armed forces and the people of Pakistan. His words that bonds between the Army and people would be preserved and further solidified amply reflect the resolve of the armed forces to thwart the nefarious designs of the enemies of Pakistan. General Asim Munir’s reiteration about the commitment to preserve national unity, uphold the sanctity of the constitution and stick to its constitutional role was a much-needed discourse in the prevailing circumstances. Equally encouraging and reassuring were his words that the people of Pakistan were central to the unity of the state and the first and foremost loyalty of the armed forces was towards the state of Pakistan. He also pledged that the armed forces of Pakistan would never shy away from any sacrifice to stabilize, secure and safeguard the future. In my view, what General Asim said in his address was the renewal of the pledge and commitment of the armed forces to play the role of a saviour like in the past and spare no sacrifice in achieving this objective. Who can deny that Pakistan Army has always stood by the nation and helped it tide over crises? The Army has dealt effectively with the existential threat posed by the terrorists and continues to grapple with the phenomenon with unruffled commitment and sacrifices, which are acknowledged all over the world. Be it natural disasters like earthquakes and floods, Army was always at the forefront to mitigate our sufferings. It has shown remarkable bravery and capability in dealing with the situation at our eastern borders as well as the onslaught of the terrorists coming from across the western border and the threats posed by the Taliban, which returned to Pakistan with courtesy of the PTI regime. The armed forces have not only made unparalleled sacrifices in warding off the internal and external threats to the security of the country, but its leadership has also helped the government obtain commitments from Saudi Arabia, the UAE and China to provide financial support to Pakistan as demanded by the IMF. That reflects the trust that the Muslim and other friendly countries have in the leadership of the Pakistan Army. The Army has also played a pivotal role in providing security to the Chinese personnel working on the CPEC projects in Pakistan. The current visit to China by COAS General Asim Munir has further strengthened defence ties between the two countries apart from Beijing’s proposal to develop a $58 billion railway system that would link Pakistan with Western China. Experts feel that the project has the potential to reshape trade and geopolitics across the Eurasian continent. General Asim also dwelt at length on the regional security situation and expressed the resolve for peaceful co-existence with its neighbours warning at the same time that the desire for peace should not be construed as a weakness because the Pakistan Army was fully capable of dealing with any security threat. This remark was ostensibly directed at India, which has spurned every effort by Pakistan for peace-making and adopted a belligerent posture against it besides sponsoring terrorism within Pakistan, as revealed by Kalbhushan Jhadav, an Indian naval officer caught in Balochistan. There is every reason to take COAS’s words at their face value in view of the record of the Armed forces in giving a befitting reply to the Indian violations of the ceasefire line, teaching a lesson to India when in February 2019, it committed the indiscretion of attacking an alleged terrorist camp at Blakot by violating the airspace of Pakistan as well as its operation against Indian-sponsored insurgency in Balochistan. The COAS rightly said that the security of Pakistan was linked to security in Afghanistan. Expressing Pakistan’s resolve to continue moral, political and diplomatic support to the people of Kashmir regarding their right to self-determination, he also appealed to the international community to play its role in resolving the dispute. It was indeed the expression of unswerving commitment by Pakistan to have the dispute resolved according to UN resolutions. I would like to conclude by saying that the overall tone and tenor of his address and the contents of his address have sent a loud and clear message to the enemies of Pakistan who pose security threats as well as internal ill-wishers hell-bent on eroding national cohesion. It was a laudable effort to reassure the people that no harm could come to the country in the presence of the Army and that it would spare no effort in sticking to the ideals of the founder of the nation. I believe that people belonging to all segments of society appreciate the resolve expressed by the COAS to thwart internal and external threats. They continue to see Army as a saviour unruffled by attempts of certain elements to tarnish its image. The writer is a former diplomat and freelance columnist.