Dr. Rabia Akhtar, Assistant Professor and Head of the School of Integrated Social Sciences (SISS), is one of the top two UOL book authors who were acknowledged and appreciated with certificates, shields and cash prizes on December 13, 2019 during the “UOL research appreciation ceremony for the year 2018”. The occasion was presided over by Chairman BoG, Mr. Awais Raoof and Rector, Prof. Dr. Mujahid Kamran who presented an award to her in recognition of the book titled “The Blind Eye: US Nonproliferation Policy towards Pakistan from Ford to Clinton” published in 2018 to her credit.
It is a research-laden book completed after years of archival research. Dr. Akhtar came out with the first academic critique of US nonproliferation policy towards Pakistan, arguing that the US prioritized its geopolitical goals over those of nonproliferation. Besides, she convincingly argued that Pakistan’s singular focus on achieving strategic parity with India meant that its decision-makers uncompromisingly and forcefully negotiated with US. The brilliant maneuvering helped it get more than it has bargained for.
On November 28, 2019, Dr. Akhtar spoke at the conference titled “Nuclear Dynamics of South Asia” at the University of Central Punjab, Lahore organized by the Strategic Vision Institute. Her talk titled “Nuclear Order and Deterrence Equilibrium in South Asia” shed light on the trends in the global nuclear order and the nonproliferation regime.
Commenting on some of the clichés attached to Pakistan’s nuclear weapons programme, Dr. Akhtar asserted that there is nothing abnormal about “Nuclear Pakistan”. She contended that threats to deterrence equilibrium emanate from the organized hypocrisy practiced by the so-called champions of nuclear nonproliferation arms control and disarmament.
Dr. Akhtar also delivered another talk on “Strategy, Security and IR in Pakistan: Routinizing or State Practices” during the “100 Years of IR Discipline, Past, Present and Future” conference held at the International Relations Department, Quaid-i-Azam University on December 12, 2019. The Minister for Human Rights, Dr. Shireen M. Mazari was the Guest of Honour at this dignified meeting.
She accentuated the need to bring in openness in the study of Strategic Studies and International Relations. She enjoined students to imbibe research as a value in their academic careers. She said that the body of literature on strategic studies and foreign policy cannot be enriched without opening archives that have troves of information on events that shaped Pakistan’s strategic, security and foreign policies.