It is generally considered that national security is a western, largely American concept that emerged in the post World War II period. A group of experts on non-military aspects of security, meeting in Tashkent in May 1990 defined security as, "a condition in which states consider that there is no danger of military attack, political pressure or economic coercion, so that they are able to pursue freely their own development and progress." Hence 'national security' means "the security of a whole socio-economic-political entity." According to the above mentioned definition, Pakistan's National Security has been under constant threat since its creation. According to the 1973 constitution, Defence Committee of the Cabinet (DCC) is responsible to provide necessary input for making decisions pertaining to national defence, whereas internal security is the responsibility of Ministry of Interior. Having experienced some inadequacies of policy making, coordination and implementation of national security plans, a new body, National Security Council (NSC) was established and recently the government has announced to abolish it as it was controversial and lacked consensus. As mentioned above, national security deals with a comprehensive response to a variety of threats. 'The concept links defence and foreign policy into a combined response to set of threat across a board of spectrum of military, political and economic contingencies'. In interdependent global system, national interests are protected through a wide array of international protocols, agreements, and regulatory regimes. While fulfilling her international obligations, Pakistan has to carve out possibilities and opportunities within confines of international law, which should be the main function of our national security policy. Internal unity and economic development, emanating from political stability, sound economic policies, good governance, and human resource development, redress of political grievance through constitutional mechanism, continuity of elected governments and provision of justice is key to attaining a sound national security through internal cohesion and solidarity. Geography, history, ideology, political system/leadership, economy and natural resources, internal dynamics, public opinion, strength and viability of defence systems, international influences and foreign policy play a decisive role in determining national security policy of any nation. Briefly, geo-politics, geo-security and geo-economics are three pillars upon which the national security policy of a country is created. Out of these factors, geo-politics, which determines the 'relationship between geography, national power and foreign policy, clearly has implication on a country's security'. The number and nature of neighbouring states also affect the national security of a state. A state with many bordering states is potentially more vulnerable and more likely to face border disputes and territorial threats than a state with few bordering states. More important than the number of bordering states is the nature of relations between neighbours. Unfortunately Pakistan has been a victim of continuous political disorder and resultant weakening of political decision making in the country. Hence, institutionalised national security policy decision-making, based on long-term national interests has suffered badly. Most of the important decisions in our country were taken without consulting or gaining consensus from the Parliament. Therefore, the opposition members of the successive Parliaments have argued that national security policy of Pakistan has never reflected the collective will of the public and their representatives. The basic issue in the foreign relations of Pakistan has been security and economic aid. Therefore, evaluation of threat perception has always dominated by its quest for security. Recently, Pakistan's security environment has been altered in the wake of nuclearisation of the region, the events of 9/11and its role in the Global War on Terror. The overall changes in the environment and growing linkages of external security dynamics with internal political dynamics have accumulated multiple security problems for Pakistan. After evaluating both internal and external threats, national security policy of a state is constituted ensuring its territorial integrity and security. National security of a state has both external and internal dimensions. Although there is a tendency to focus on the external dimensions more deliberately while dealing with issues of national security, however, the internal dimension of security is equally critical. Pakistan today is facing multifarious threats and challenges to its national security. Externally, beside our ever-hostile eastern front, the rapidly changing situation on our western border has posed a new security dilemma. On going western rhetoric on the safety and security of our nuclear programme is another concern. Internally, Pakistan has more complex and intricate issues to tackle. Threat of extremism and terrorism, growing challenge to the writ of the government, political instability, economic crises, provincial disharmony, weak institutions, threat to food, energy and water security are immediate problems being faced by the state. These complex and interdependent challenges cannot be tackled by traditional adhocism and isolated approach. The intricacy of the matter demands a robust, well thought, consensual, integrated long-term policy which is institutionalised through a mechanism to secure the interests of the future generations of Pakistan. The writer is a freelance columnist