The media is the face of any state. Whatever and whenever things happens within a state or if any important development or event takes place in the global world the media timely informs its audience. To create a vibrant and united society media plays the role of an educator. When evil gets stronger, the media plays the role of warner and exposer. To keep the balance in a just society, the media keeps a check on institutions to make sure everyone is accountable. To build a nation from scratch the best role any institution can play is through the media. And at times when the state is going through a major transformation period nationally and internationally, the media becomes the most active and responsible pillar of that state.Since the war on terror, Pakistan in particular and Muslim world in general has been demonized by Islamophobia and the image of terrorism was deliberately associated with Islam — a religion that spreads the message of universal peace and stability, and with Pakistan — a country that is ranked number 5 among the participants countries of performing peacekeeping missions around the world. To make propel a hate oriented and biased interpretation, the international media played the most important role. Since then Pakistan has been fighting a war at two fronts — internally with radicalized factions and externally to rise above the headlines of ‘Pakistan — a hard country to live’ and ‘Pakistan — a terrorist country’. While fighting this war, now Pakistan has become a victor rather than a victim and achieved recognition as ‘Pakistan — a resilient nation’ and as ‘Pakistan — the bravest nation’. In this warfare states’ target the psychology of their adversary to bring their morale down without even fighting a warToday’s Pakistan is a lot different from what it was — it is at the verge of becoming an important player in global politics. With a greater role to play in the emerging world order, Pakistan is going through a transformational period internally and externally. This long journey is full of challenges and hurdles so the route to be taken is not so easy. Although Pakistan has survived the war started against it by international media post 9/11, but the road ahead in the age of 5th generation warfare, which is more tricky and dangerous. At this stage, when the country has decided to become the beacon for developing states, responsible, active and vibrant media becomes the key to fight against evils trying to sabotage the peace and stability of the country. So to become the victor in this domain and to stay vigilant, the media is the first and last line of defence as stated by DG ISPR in his recent press conference.The question that we should ask is that why is it this important? The answer lies in the emerging global dynamics, where direct confrontation between states is not an option to achieve their interests. So to achieve certain interests without fighting traditional wars, non-kinetic war or 5th generation warfare has become the a major tool for states. In this warfare, states’ target the psychology of their adversary to bring their morale down without even fighting a war. Every powerful state or group wants to impose its vision, values and thinking pattern on other states/groups who lack sufficient information, so that they can dominate the digital/information world. The analogy of ‘Allegory of Cave’ by Plato tells us that this is best done through the process called ‘Perception Management.’ And through the role of still and moving images is more efficient in producing these results. Today, social media offers the best opportunity to achieve these objectives.Unfortunately Pakistan has been a victim of this warfare for a long time but now threats have become more visible and apparent. Enemies and adversaries are using their full potential to wage such a war against Pakistan, whether in the form of destabilizing agents, spreading hatred or by exploiting the existing fault lines. The question is, is Pakistan ready to fight back? In this war where media is the first and last line of defence, is Pakistani media ready to defend its country? Unfortunately, the answer is not very clear as it lies between maybe and maybe not. The answer that is in the negative, is because of the lack of knowledge regarding the impact of social media, mainly when it is weaponised against a state to question its values, to create confusions and to exploit the existing ideological, political and social fault lines. This phenomenon became much clear with the famous case of Russian meddling in United States’ presidential elections of 2016. Social media’s role and impact in forming public opinion and in narrative building has become more evident during 2018. Unfortunately, Pakistan lags behind in this domain due to multiple factors. Now is the time for Pakistan to grow bigger in this domain and to revive the damaged soft power of the country. The responsibility lies not only in the hands of government or the mainstream media but also in the hands of the educated young generation, who are willing to make their country proud.The writer is an M.Phil. Scholar of strategic studies at National Defence University, ISB, and is pursuing a specialization in the weaponisation of Social MediaPublished in Daily Times, December 11th 2018.