Respected Sir,


I heard your interview on "Flash Point" regarding OBL, beside your interview i know you as a national hero and a living legend, i wish you would be the acting body of air force or you still owned a fighter at your home and we could see the dead roasted flashes images of those Americans who violet our territory and did operation on our motherland, i know you would too feel paralyze as i, being a girl and a medical student.
i pray for your good health and long life from the bottom of my heart. Why you cant be our politician, our leader, our commander, our fate decider :(
We all (nation) love you so very much...

 

Palwasha Jaan

 

 

Dear Sajad:

I was quite pleased to see that after my trip to Qingdao,Beijing, Tokyo and Washington, DC these past two weeks I returned to see your book had finally arrived!  I immediately jumped into it.

What a page turner Sajad!  I love it and it is very hard to put down.  When you said you didn't mince words in this book and told it like it is -- well that was no exaggeration my friend!.   I'm learning quite a lot about history and human nature as well.  There are some holes in my knowledge of some of the specifics you addressed but suffice to say I'll fill those in eventually.   Sometimes we Americans  aren't as informed as we should be.  I'd love to send a copy to Congressman Peter King, Chairman of Homeland Defense Committee.   If I do, I'll have to get you to autograph that one to him.   i also have a good friend an fraternity brother who is a retired Colonel, USAF who enjoy a copy.   I may turn out to be one of your best customers!

From the very inception you of the book you really get the feeling that the English Catholic historian, politician, writer  and moralist,Sir John Dalberg-Acton (aka Lord Acton), once put it, "Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely!".  You alluded to what may drive leaders to this.   Well there is an American expression called "Wag the dog".   In essence -- diversions -- when things are going poorly in a country, nothing distracts that populace like a good old fashion crisis, of which a war would be at the top of that list.

Getting back to the Flight of the Falcon, the passion for the material is really moving; and thank you for sharing so much of your family background -- like my father, also your close friend, it is clear to see that we all build our core values, our sense of right and wrong and our dedication to friends and family at home.  If cared for properly, they will last a lifetime.   

I once heard it said that the accumulation of an individual's worth is not what he accumulates in life, but what he leaves behind -- who he has inspired to do better things in his life.   I often tell people who I have helped not to thank me but to pass it on and help someone else.   Guess I'm an idealist but I'd like to see more of that in this world.

Incidentally, one thing I didn't know is that incident with the Shah of Iran -- great stuff.  You'll always have that military code in you Sajad, Duty, Service and Honor.   Although I would have sent an F-14 to "escort" the Ayatollah K. to much earlier meeting with Allah, the reason Iran went to hell is because much of what you fear for Pakistan -- extremism.    That given enough oppression, poverty and lack of education, and depriving people of the simple human dignity gained from having a productive future  -- well only bad comes from that and I hope Pakistan wakes up.   It has too proud a history to retreat into that state for long.

On a separate subject, did you know Prince Azod?  He was the son of Mozaffar-al-Din Shah, the king and previous shah who initiated the Iranian Constitution and the National Assembly?  (they were the royal family before the Brits put in the Pahlavis)   He was a friend of Dad's, a good man.   He left Iran a few months before the Cultural Revolution and passed away in France in 1998. He was a big agricultural proponent for Iran.   Guess he survived under the Pahlavi's by not going toe-to-toe with them.

Well back to you book!

Warm regards,

Tom

Message: dear sir,

i am the son of dr. terrell woodmansee.  my father was the surgeon assigned to the u.s.air force base in peshawar from 1964-1966.  he was a navial aviator during ww II.  you were a legend in our home.

sincerely,

james woodmansee

 

Dear James,

It is a very pleasant surprise to hear from two American sons of my valued friends long time ago. Yes i remember your father Col. Woodmansee at Bedaber US comm.base near Peshawar. I had spent many wonderful and caring moments with your gracious parents. I even recall your sister who used to go for Black  Belt Taikndo lessons. Once i had terrible pains  which were diagnosed by your Dad as kidney infection and He treated and got me back in good shape.

 Meanwhile try to get a book through amazon titled Flight of the Falcon by me. It will titlate your memories. It can also  be ordered through www.vanguardbooks.com

My best wishes for your entire family. Pl. stay in touch.

 

ajad Haider

Air Commodore (R)

 "Sir! I am Air Cdre Masud Hatmi's son (My father expired in 89 and Saad uncle in 2001). Yes! I met you in Minhas.  I read your book with great enthusiasm. Where it has has many lessons for us yet it truly inspires us (the second generation of PAF fighter pilots) to carry the legacy, left by legends like you and many others......Although we have transformed into a modern force with hi-tech gadgetry's in our jets, yet we are still way-off to what you guys used to do with these planes. I commanded 9 sqn (now F-16s) from Jun-2008 till Oct 2010. I can assure you that we honor the sacrifices laid by our predecessors and appreciate how PAF covered all these arduous years to be what it is today.......We have not seen war, but did come close to it couple of times.........you can be satisfied that had it happened, we would have fought like our elders; with resolute, courage & honor. Sir! it is indeed a very memorable book for many of my friends, who have heard but not seen the true mettle of PAF. Also, I really appreciate your comments in the book regarding my father & uncle [atleast they were spared from your thrashing :)] Sir I am posted at AHQ...E-9 Islamabad and sure would want to meet you......."

The comments coming through Jimdo web via E-mails were thought to be worth sharing. Consequently, these messages are being pasted on the blog. Thanks to all those who are continually getting to know about the Flight of the Falcon and sending their candid comments as they read the chronicle. Learning never stops and it should not. The author gains so much from comments and questions that are being addressed. The author requests that commenters  and reviewers  kindly add their E-mail address.

Thanks for your consideration.

Comments: 92
  • #92

    ASAD (Saturday, 14 December 2013 14:38)

    SIR WE SALUTE YOU FROM DEEP INSIDE OUR HEART
    TO YOUR COURAGE AND BRAVERY YOU DISPLAYED AS A FEARLESS WARRIOR .IF WE ARE ALIVE AND SAFE TODAY ITS BECAUSE OF PROUD SONS OF THIS SOIL LIKE YOU.
    AND SIR YOUR INTERVIEW WITH BBC OF 1965 WAR,IT WAS REALLY LIKE A LION IS SPEAKING.SIR WE ARE REALLY PROUD OF YOU
    MAY GOD ALWAYS KEEP YOU SAFE

  • #91

    Sqn.Ldr (retd) Lionel R.Cullen (Wednesday, 18 January 2012 06:03)

    Well done ACE. JUST GOT YOUR BOOK & MOST IMPRESSED WITH YOUR ACHIEVEMENTS & YOUR COURAGE IN PUTTING PEN TO PAPER & REVEALING THE TRUTH AS SEEN FROM YOUR EXPERIENCE.I LOVE IT. GOD BLESS YOU & THE FAMILY & I HOPE WE MEET AGAIN SOMETIME. YOURS AS ALWAYS, LEN. (11th GD (P)

  • #90

    sajad (Friday, 31 December 2010 05:23)

    naim ur rehman,
    This is the greatest reward for me that patriotic Pakistanis like you and millions like me have our hearts beating for Pakistan, our beloved land, bestowed upon us by the greatest leader of the the last century, the Quaid-e-Azam. Just as he lives in our conscience and heart beats and none of these Scumbags who followed him (Euphemism for 'conquered Pakistan'), masqueraded as democrats or messiahs in Khaki, can dilute the Quaid's stellar image. Revival of his vision and legacy of integrity and deep passion to lift the down trodden is the only track which can rescue the nation sinking in a swamp; a nation with a broken spine and tongue tide.

    My endeavorer has been to provide a very small and humble catalyst to dent the deplorable inertia and existential indignity and capitulation of millions to a small band of imposters and thugs masqueraded as champions of democracy. May the Creator give us the wisdom to discern good from phonies and the courage to wrest back human dignity and national sovereignty, both under the auctioneer's hammer to the lowest bidder.

  • #89

    naim ur rehman (Thursday, 16 December 2010 12:03)

    Hi Sajad.I would like to compliment you for providing a detailed book about the events of PAF in particular and a general brief history of our dishonest leaders towards the end of your book.We indeed as a bunch of indiciplined people/ individuals since centuries have done lot of injustice with this sacred land which was solely provided to us by our great Quaid who during the last ten years not only fought with british and hindus but also battled with death every day.I would especialy like to make a referance of Late East Pakistan as today is the day when we lost more then half of our country.This is a very difficult time but being a muslim i have a firm beleif that Pakistan will one day prevail again with the same shine and glory for which it was carved.Thanks

  • #88

    sajad (Thursday, 16 December 2010 06:17)

    Pl. correct a typo error in the second line. It should read 'Pakistan is NOW (Delete NOT) under the........

    Thanks

  • #87

    sajad (Monday, 13 December 2010 13:36)

    Dear Captain Javed Sheikh,
    Sorry for the belated response. Am getting old and too busy making my enduring bid for an honorable Pakistan which it is not under the criminals and tawaifs who are hurling our beloved country and nation towards an abyss.
    I remember Chacha Siddique very well. Actually it was him who made that comment to me when i a fresh pilot in conversion school at mauripur went to him and informed that one of the panels on the aircraft i was alloted was a piece cut from a tin can. What days and what men they were who taught us patriotism by simple personal way of thinking and life and love for Pakistan. It is a pleasure to be in touch with so many young men and women from Australia to US and Canada that i feel living the 50s all over again.
    Thank you for your comments on the book. I do wish you have the Third edition of the book which is much more comprehensive and open as compared to the first two editions. The Urdu version is already in the book stalls. Allah has been merciful that my message is getting across. That is all i wanted from this 6 year effort.
    I wish you and your family, especially your grand children good health, happiness and always love for Pakistan and respect for the great Quaid-e-Azam, the greatest leader the WORLD produced in that eon. May Allah bless his souls, and of your and our elders who taught us the meaning of courage, honesty and respect for honor.
    Best Wishes
    Sajad Haider

  • #86

    Shahid H. Manto (Friday, 03 December 2010 14:56)

    Dear Sir
    Assalaam-o-Alekum:-

    Can you please update "Media Gallery" by some more memorable pics or videos with 1965 and 1971 wars heroes? Would be awsome if you have some.

    Regards,

    Shahid H. Manto

  • #85

    Dr.Mehvish Baig (Monday, 22 November 2010 03:44)

    Dear Air Cdr.S Haider,

    I was reading your post dated Sep 15,2010.You have mentioned several great acheivers of Pakistan Airforce who are well recognized or not so well recognized.I like to call the "not so well recognized" achievers the "Unsung Heros of Pakitan".One such fighter pilot is Wg.Cdr.(R)Salim Baig who shot down 2 enemy aircrafts in the 1971 war.His kills are undisputed and he is probably amongst 4 or 5 fighter pilots of Airforce who have more than 1 kill in an air battle.
    Kind Regards.

  • #84

    sajad (Wednesday, 17 November 2010 08:28)

    Dear AVM Ahmed,

    I already sent you a message but obviously it did not come through. It gives me immense pleasure to hear from young comrades which tells us that tradition still has some life. I look forward to your candid comments after you are through reading Flight of the Falcon.
    Meanwhile, my best wishes on this sacred day when a great sacrifice was ordained by Allah.Let us pray to Allah for reprieve of the millions who are without food, clean water, shelter and any hope for justice.May he one day bring smile on the faces of the suffering awaam.
    Best Wishes

    Sajad Haider

  • #83

    AVM Ahmed (Sunday, 07 November 2010 07:11)

    AOA Sir
    This is AVM Ahmed. Ex 18, 5 and 23 Sqn.
    Good to see you after a long time. You appear fighting fit and ready to get in the cockpit of the F-86 to clobber the SOBs.
    I was looking forward to reading your book. Now that I got your website, I have placed the order straight away.
    with all my best wishes and warm regards for you and your family
    ---

  • #82

    Captain Javed B. Sheikh (Rtd.), ATP (Sunday, 07 November 2010 06:54)

    Captain Javed B. Sheikh(Retired), ATP left a new guestbook entry or comment on your JimdoPage http://www.sajadhaider.com/

    ---
    November 6, 2010



    Dear Air Commodore Sajjad:

    I am Javed Bashir Sheikh, 65 years old, and I moved to the U.S. in 1965, just few days before the 1965 war. I am son of late Squadron Leader S.M. Bashir of good old 101 MU and the later on in Group
    either One or Two. He retired from the P.A.F. in spring of 1961. He was based at Drigh Road. By the way his older brother was Sdr.Ldr M. Siddiq; also know as Cha Cha Siddiq, who was at P.A.F.
    Risalpur. Like you, I also have the great honor to have the P.A.F. blood in me, but unlike yours, mine is of course via osmosis. I grew up there seeing Furies, Tempest, Attackers, Lancasters and
    Bristol Frieghters doing their run-ups and later on seeing the arrivals of F-86’s and F-104 and of course B-57. I am very proud of that, and you GDP’s were my idols and heroes, because you were there
    to save and defend Baba Quaid’s (as we called him with respect in our homes looking at his picture). My late father was just like you. An honest man. Who spoke truth and stood for justice and
    henceforth suffered at the hands of his superiors. He stayed in it to serve Pakistan and C-in-C M Ashgar Khan, whom he adored and admired very much. Most of the names you mention in your book, I know
    of them and I as a kid witnessed the mid air collision of A.T. Naqvi’s aircraft, while I was watching the pair flying overhead Drigh Road Airfield.

    Sir, your book has made me cry with pride and then with sorrow at times, to realize what we were once upon a time and what we have become now. I am going to leave your books for my grand sons Azad
    and Aziz, for them to read it when they are of age. I call your book “The Story of My Hero”. A hero you are to me, of course.

    I thank you and salute you to have served my childhood Pakistan then and now as well. I shall always respectfully love you for what you are and have been, and for that with a great sense reverence.
    May God bless you and your family with much happiness and good health. Justice is always in the hands of Allah and not us mortal humans. You are a just man in my book and I am sure so are you in His
    book as well.

    With much reverence and profound respect,

    Sincerely,

    Captain Javed B. Sheikh (Rtd.), ATP
    B-737, DO 328Jet, BE-400A/MU-300, BE-1900D

    Chicago, Illinois, U.S.A.



    ---

    Click this link in order to view the entry:
    http://www.sajadhaider.com/guest-book/

  • #81

    Captain Javed B. Sheikh(Retired), ATP (Saturday, 06 November 2010 17:58)

    November 6, 2010



    Dear Air Commodore Sajjad:

    I am Javed Bashir Sheikh, 65 years old, and I moved to the U.S. in 1965, just few days before the 1965 war. I am son of late Squadron Leader S.M. Bashir of good old 101 MU and the later on in Group either One or Two. He retired from the P.A.F. in spring of 1961. He was based at Drigh Road. By the way his older brother was Sdr.Ldr M. Siddiq; also know as Cha Cha Siddiq, who was at P.A.F. Risalpur. Like you, I also have the great honor to have the P.A.F. blood in me, but unlike yours, mine is of course via osmosis. I grew up there seeing Furies, Tempest, Attackers, Lancasters and Bristol Frieghters doing their run-ups and later on seeing the arrivals of F-86’s and F-104 and of course B-57. I am very proud of that, and you GDP’s were my idols and heroes, because you were there to save and defend Baba Quaid’s (as we called him with respect in our homes looking at his picture). My late father was just like you. An honest man. Who spoke truth and stood for justice and henceforth suffered at the hands of his superiors. He stayed in it to serve Pakistan and C-in-C M Ashgar Khan, whom he adored and admired very much. Most of the names you mention in your book, I know of them and I as a kid witnessed the mid air collision of A.T. Naqvi’s aircraft, while I was watching the pair flying overhead Drigh Road Airfield.

    Sir, your book has made me cry with pride and then with sorrow at times, to realize what we were once upon a time and what we have become now. I am going to leave your books for my grand sons Azad and Aziz, for them to read it when they are of age. I call your book “The Story of My Hero”. A hero you are to me, of course.

    I thank you and salute you to have served my childhood Pakistan then and now as well. I shall always respectfully love you for what you are and have been, and for that with a great sense reverence. May God bless you and your family with much happiness and good health. Justice is always in the hands of Allah and not us mortal humans. You are a just man in my book and I am sure so are you in His book as well.

    With much reverence and profound respect,

    Sincerely,

    Captain Javed B. Sheikh (Rtd.), ATP
    B-737, DO 328Jet, BE-400A/MU-300, BE-1900D

    Chicago, Illinois, U.S.A.



  • #80

    sajad (Thursday, 04 November 2010 08:36)

    This message is for Eman my first inspiration for writing The Flight of the Falcon, and foe AVM Ahmed and Hamid Ali.

    Pl. send me your E-mail addresses. Eman to pl. contact me imm. as i have been looking for you for two years. Ahmed i amglad you have ordered the book. Pl. comment candidly after you finish reading it. As for placing my autobiography on this web i will talk to my moderator. Hope you all will see this msg.

  • #79

    Ahmed (Thursday, 04 November 2010 08:25)

    AOA Sir
    This is AVM Ahmed. Ex 18, 5 and 23 Sqn.
    Good to see you after a long time. You appear fighting fit and ready to get in the cockpit of the F-86 to clobber the SOBs.
    I was looking forward to reading your book. Now that I got your website, I have placed the order straight away.
    with all my best wishes and warm regards for you and your family

  • #78

    rubegeodin@yahoo.com (Saturday, 30 October 2010 10:26)

    Dear sir,
    Greetings , could u clarify if there are fresh inputs in "Flight of the Falcon"(third edition).If so then i need to buy the new book.
    Coming to matters of professional intrest- how did u rate the F-86 Sabre against our Hunters.The Indo-Pak air wars were great examples of jet air combat where the principles of dogfighting still mattered.Unfortunately these air battles have not been well documented and it is upto distinguished pilots like u of that era to do it,if it is not impudent of my saying so.
    My Dad used to say those were great days where u lived honourably and fought cleanly, unlike todays rabid communalism.
    I look forward to your fresh endeavours and wish u & ur family all all the best.
    Regards.

  • #77

    sajad (Wednesday, 15 September 2010 08:29)

    Pakistani nation suffers from a Hero syndrome,manufactured by those who had the history perverted to create heroes out of Zeros which they were. After the real and true hero of all times in world history of leaders, Quaid-e-Azam was the only true Hero of this nation. None that followed him even qualified to be called leaders of a nation, they were and remain mediocre, over ambitious, self centered, greedy and corrupt- morally, intellectually and mostly bubonic plunderers. Yes, the military produced several courageous men of honor who were indelibly intrepid to spill their blood for the motherland, fully knowing the peril to their lives in performing their missions. These were the Heros the young generation should eulogize and ameliorate. Specifically for the PAF, Sarfraz Rafiqui, Yunus, Alam Siddiqui, Alaudin(Butch) Ahmed, Munir-ud-Din Ahmed (Bha), Iqbal (Bala)are just a few of the names who eulogies have been written in gold. Besides these martyrs there were those from the military who survived fighting in the highest traditions of gallantry in battle. To be specific,the PAF had its share in which first one in my opinion who deserves mention is Air Commodore Nazir (Bill) Latif,S.J, the best Fighter and Bomber commander in peace and wars the PAF had. Little heard of as i can see from the comments about perceived heroes popping up here and there, Bill Latif's greatest asset besides his achievements as a Fighter/Bomber pilot/commander was his humility, modesty and legendary generosity. As a Christian officer,unlike an odd other colleague, he never ever believed or uttered a syllable about being deprived of rank and fame for his Christian faith. Even today he considers such innuendos by Christian compatriots highly salacious and self-promoting because the indelible truth is that there was never a hint or instance, ever, of partisan-ism by any one in high command of PAF for one's faith. Then there were great Christian officers who rose to become Assistant Chiefs of Staff's Operations, Maintenance,(Torowitz) and as Vice Chiefs of PAF; Eric Hall,Micky Obrian (1975). It was merit alone that determined an officers assent, till 1972, where after i was not in the mainstream to know any different.
    As for the living legends, other than Bill Latif, there is MM Alam who earned himself a well deserved place in history as the highest scorer in air kills from Suez to Seol. He has been very well rewarded for that. Sqn.Ldr. Yousaf (Tangewallah) in professional opinion comes next on that glory ladder for having fought against 8 enemy fighters and returned with a battered F-86. You do not find his mention either amongst the achievers owing to his modesty even though he shot an enemy fighter a couple of days after his land mark air combat. There are many others young pilots who deserve the gratitude of the nation and be ameliorated by the present generation and posterity for destroying enemy aircraft.Some of the fighter and bomber pilots flew the most dangerous missions repeatedly and fearlessly with stunning results. My book Flight of the Falcon (Third Edition) has vociferously chronicled the performance of pilots and squadrons with redoubtable veracity.
    Now to the question and perceptions about individuals including myself not being promoted on some pretext or the other, my answer is that i had a frontal imbroglio with dictator Zia ul Haq about the evil of martial-law and behavior of generals. Inexorably, i asked for it and my career soon ended. As far as MM Alam was concerned he had reached his useful limit as we all do at a point in career. Cecil Choudhary had also reached the highest he should have gone and all the ruckus about war performance and sectarian bias have no basis. Here lack of veracity and evidence in one's breathless bellowing is the best evidence itself.
    Alam,Cecil, I and many more were considered good pilots but there is a lot more to achieving higher commands than being a hotshot pilot. AM Asghar Khan stands tall as the finest role model of an officer,gentleman and commander. That is why Merit alone was the criteria for progress and promotion and used as yard stick by A.M.s Asghar, Nur and Rahim Khans. That is why this institution stands on very sound foundation of steel, blood, sweat, tears and resolute will and determination to be second to none. I hope this answers many questions put by admirable enthusiasts of PAF.

  • #76

    Shahid Manto (Tuesday, 07 September 2010 13:29)

    Happy September 7. I Know you have lots of memories. PAKISTAN ZINDABAD.

  • #75

    Hamid Ali (Friday, 13 August 2010 04:20)

    Sir,

    Kindly add your biography in this website.

  • #74

    Mohammad Kamran (Thursday, 08 July 2010 05:49)

    Why none of the 1965 PAF heroes could be promotions above Air Commodores or Group Captain? You can see Cecil Chaudary, M.M. Alam and yourself as well?

  • #73

    Abid Hussain (Monday, 05 July 2010 09:00)

    I was wondering what would you have to say about the current state of the PAF in terms of professionalism, readiness and technology. Do you think it is an effective force in the new intricate world that has emerged in the last decade.
    Also, are there any plans to write an account about your escapades in the world of business. You do hint that in your book. I think that should be an interesting read as well. Thanks.

  • #72

    Shahid Manto (Friday, 28 May 2010 10:32)

    Sir your book is awesome. Love to read it every day.Can you please tell me why Alloudin called "Butch" Thanks. Shaid Manto

  • #71

    BILAL MIAN (Wednesday, 07 April 2010 16:21)


    Aslaam alikum wr wb Sajad Haider sir, YOu are a living legend a living falcon a hero who rules millions of pakistani hearts. I have watched your video on youtube being interviewed by a BBC correspondent countless number of times. I am like many pakistanis a big fan of yours and of several great PAF pilots throughout our glorious history as a potent AIR FORCE truly SECOND TO NONE. Your daring attack on major indian base in pathankot in 1965 war against our arch rival india from squadron based in peshawar was truly classic with your formation. I am quite fondly building collection of books on PAF in english and urdu. I have purchased your book today on "Vanguards books Online" and hope to receive it in 2-3 weeks here in UK. I love our armed forces but i suppose love for PAF has been a bit more than the other two services. I wish i could become a PAF Fighter pilot but at age of 32 i guess it's too late. Still i hope i can contribute in some way to PAF by perhaps completing my aeronautics engineering degree.

    I wish i can speak to you live via phone or meet you some day. Like many other admirers and lovers i too would love asking you a lot of questions. I am really looking forward to read your autobiography " Flight of the Falcon". I know it will be enjoyable and enlightening experience. I assure our generation will bring pakistan back to it's actual destination, this responsiblity we will take on board with sweat, toil, blood, tears and endless love of pakistan. Pakistan is a gift of ALLAH and it has a special role to play in unifying the muslim world and ending hegemony of anti-islamic nations especially israel.

    May ALLAH give you even my umaar ! May you have a prosperous and healthy life. Your very valuable to us and many other greats of your and later generations who build the strong pillars of PAF making it the best Air Force in the world as acknowledged by several neutral military analysts. Strange i am addressing you yet the image i have of you is that of squadron leader sajad haider of 1965 war and not of a man in his 70s !. All the best my best wishes to you.

  • #70

    Ubaid Ahmed (Saturday, 13 March 2010 02:50)

    Sir,
    I'm short of words to describe how exceptional your book is. I have invested every minute of my spare time into that masterpiece of a book. Being a very devoted Aviation Enthusiast, I have not read a book better than 'Fight of the Falcon'. It's beyond exceptional sir, nobody could've written it better than you did.
    That book makes me wish, I was not Amblyopic, so that I could join our marvelous Air force and do what you have done for it.
    Take very good care of yourself sir.
    Allah Hafiz.

  • #69

    Muhammad Ali (Thursday, 25 February 2010 12:34)

    ASA Mr. Haider,
    My name is Ali and I am currently residing in Canada.I would like to ask you a question that I know is irrelevant to your book, although an answer would be much appreciated.
    I am a die heart fan of Pakistan Air Force. My father himself is a retired Squardon Leader from PAF that has inspired me to join PAF as well.
    I did some research on the requirements of joining PAF and found out that I would have to give up my Canadian citizenship. Do you think there is a way around this?
    Last but not least, I have a bold request. I may be visiting Pakistan in the near future and would like to see you in person. The request is not to discuss any sort of political topics, but to simply meet an inspirational and bold person.
    Once again an answer would be much appreciated on this discussion board or my email ali4888@hotmail.com
    Sincearly,
    Muhammad Ali.

  • #68

    Khayyam Ally Soomro (Wednesday, 24 February 2010 01:32)

    Dear Sir, I have read the book and found it to be he best on Pakistan Air Force. The flow is exceptionally good and the incidents touched upon are very interesting. I also commend your sense of justice and fairplay in that you did not get carried away by fiction, but based your narration of history on facts.
    I salute you and other brave pilots of PAF who fought a much larger but inept air force of our enemy and forced them into submission. We can very well say that PAF saved Pakistan in 1965 when they operated most crucial missions and thwarted the nefarious designs of the Indians.

  • #67

    Rehmane (Friday, 19 February 2010 11:22)

    I can see from this guest book that I join a multitude of people who appreciate not only the AC's book but his service as a fighter pilot to our country.
    However, I am compelled to note that there are a couple of observations that I vehemently disagree with.
    Mr. A Malik (presumably a pseudonym) makes some 'observations' that I would like to explore. He first suggests that the book is a ‘decent job’ of identifying the weaknesses of our leaders and then in the very next sentence derides the book as a compendium of grievances. Really? Which is it? Every other review suggests the book is an attempt to present an account of the nation’s war history from an active participant. With regard to the AC’s supposed grievances, anyone who has worked in any organization of any size, with its necessary baggage of organizational politics HAS suffered the consequences of such politics and I for one do not believe that AC has complained other than describing the travails of establishing a career – perfectly normal. Now Mr. Malik may have achieved the heights of personal achievement without suffering the usual organizational politics, but that would make him the exception. Are you an exceptional achiever Mr. Malik?

    Perhaps I misunderstand the statement of the 22 families, but when did Bhutto belong to these ‘vampires’? I find the criticism of someone seeking the help of his friends unseemly – if the AC is not going to ask his friends for help then whom? Mr. Malik? I think not. More importantly, what does that have to do with the storyline – that of missed opportunities and bad leadership?

    Mr. Malik then introduces some outside-of-the-book knowledge by saying that the AC was reputedly “arrogant and vane” throughout his career. Ignoring the redundancy (and incorrect spelling), SO WHAT? Once again, if the AC is an arrogant person, a fact not in evidence other that Mr.Malik’s suggestion, then so be it – we are to read his book and make up our minds about its contents NOT about the AC himself. Why introduce this personal attack? How do you know about the AC’s reputation? Perhaps if you elaborated on how you came about this knowledge we would be able to determine your credibility, Mr. Malik.

    Mr. Malik then proceeds to accuse the AC of not being a gentleman. Here is an unwarranted personal attack AGAIN. I read the portions about the AC’s personal life with considerable trepidation for I am not used to such open discussion about one’s personal life anywhere in Pakistani authorship. To the best of my reading of the book, the AC only NAMED his wives and NEVER named any of his ‘lady friends’. Okay, so the AC enjoyed the life of a romantic ‘ladies man’ and says so memorably –‘always in love’ – but NEVER ‘kissed and told’. Would Mr. Malik prefer that the AC write his story in an antiseptic, holier-than-thou manner, or should the AC have, as he did, write it, ‘warts and all’? I leave to the readers to reach their own conclusion, but it is certain that the AC never crossed the line that Mr. Malik suggests.

    Not satisfied with his unwarranted, unsubstantiated attacks on the AC’s person, he then viciously attacks other pilots and without ANY evidence to support his smear, suggests that Abbas Khattak, et al were corrupt thieves. WOW. I guess the internet and its anonymity allows such personal attacks without any repercussions. It makes my blood boil that these people are attacked without evidence and cannot defend themselves because no one knows who Mr. Malik is – other than an individual who chooses to make his charges “behind the veil” of anonymity – he may even be a coward. Perhaps.

    Then Mr. Malik, not satisfied with his personal attacks on the AC and other pilots, he denigrates the profession of fighter piloting ITSELF, by equating it to the job of a constable. In one fell swoop, he has belittled every fighter pilot in history, from the WWI observer pilots who took pot shots at each other with their pistols to the modern day pilot with his multi-role plane and its helmet controlled operation – ALL OF THEM ARE THE SAME AS A CONSTABLE. This analogy has to be the worst since man first picked up the pen. Really, Mr. Malik? Have you no shame? Why do you increasingly sound like a jealous/envious person who, on not obtaining the object of his desire, belittles it? Are you a jilted ‘wannabe’ fighter pilot? Perhaps. Not content with belittling the profession, he then complains of over-compensation. Is there no limit to your obvious HATRED of fighter pilots?

    I wonder if the AC took him up on his offer to discuss over a “refreshing beverage”.


    Anyway, these are my ‘two paisas’ on the book (and Mr. Malik) and I wish the AC Godspeed and happy tailwinds.

  • #66

    Tamir Hussain (Friday, 19 February 2010 07:12)

    Asalaam aulaikum Sir,

    I am sure you get numerous emails every day. You are truly a legend and my hero.
    I always wanted to join PAF but it did not happen. I have twin boys that are almost six years old and I can see my passion for flying has been passed on to them. I look forward to the future years where I can read Flight of the Falcon to them. Well my copy of your book is ordered and I cannot wait for it.

    Thank you for all that you have done for our country.

    Best wishes,
    Tamir Hussain

  • #65

    sajad (Friday, 19 February 2010 06:57)

    Dear Abid Hussain,

    You have very valid questions. The answer to weather Sarfraz Rafiqui's guns really jammed have been an enigma for many seasoned fighter pilots of the time. In over a decade of flying F-86's in peace and war there was not a single case of all guns jamming. Also from his wingman's story it does not seem plausible that such a failure of all guns happened. Cecils story is difficult to stand the test of veracity.

    As far the 1973 Arab-Israeli war, yes, the only Israeli aircraft shot down were by PAF pilots. I know for sure that an Israeli Mirage J (For Jewish) escorted by Israeli Phantoms was shot down by Flt.Lt. Sattar Alvi, a consummate fighter pilot. He was flying a Mig-21 on which he had very little experience and he was on minimum fuel (Mig-21 had only 30minutes fuel endurance) when the air combat took place. The PAF call sign was Shahbaz and Alvni was flying a wingman position with another great fighter pilot Arif Manzoor. Sattar Alvi shot Israeli Captain M.Lutz,one of the two Mirages as his fuel was evaporating faster than seconds on his clock. Sattar Alvi and Arif Manzoor were awarded the highest Syrian gallantry award Wisam Alfaris. Sattar was also awarde the coveted Sitar-e-Jurat by the PAF, for his gallantry.

    kudos to those young warriors of the PAF.

    I hope that this answers the questions about the professionalism of PAF pilots.

  • #64

    Abid Hussain (Sunday, 14 February 2010 10:33)

    Again a great book but did leave a few questions in my mind. In the mission that Rafiqi led over Halwara, whether his guns were really jammed as claimed by the PAF or is this just another myth. Also wondering if PAF had any role to play in the 1973 Arab-Israeli war where it is popularly believed that the PAF performed exceedingly well.

  • #63

    sajad (Thursday, 11 February 2010 08:26)

    I am gratified to know that the mission of writing my book is bearing fruition. People like yourself and others who are contacting me and the youth in Pakistan have to mobilize opinion and take back their Pakistan which Quaid-e-Azam had bequeathed upon us. My generation failed in good measure to teach their children Pakistaniat and patriotism and euligising the father of the nation. Its your generation which must make the sacrifice to take Pakistan out of the political filth it is mired in and demolish the cult politics where dynasties are being prepared. Sons, daughters, cousins and brothers are in the pipeline to deny the true Pakistanis their right to govern with dignity and honesty. Let us bring down the walls which hide the reprobates, bandits,murderers and looters of national wealth. They are doing it with brazen abandon because no one from 165 million has shown the courage to stand up and be counted. God be with those who have the will to show their spine.

  • #62

    Abid Hussain (Wednesday, 10 February 2010 22:27)

    It was about time someone would put things in perspective and demolish some of the myths of 65 and 71 wars. I congratulate you for the fact that you have tried your best to be as objective as possible when it comes to narrating facts of history. It is interesting that your book is also most sought after on the other side of the border judging by the interest it has generated on some of the Indian defense forums. Another interesting part of your book is when you describe how you stood up and spoke to General Zia. Only somebody who is upright and sincere can have the audacity to confront a dictator like you did. About the events that unfolded in 1971, I wonder if you had the opportunity to read "Witness to Surrender" by Sadiq Salik (late) who was another author I enjoyed reading.

  • #61

    sajad (Saturday, 06 February 2010 06:45)

    Aqsa,
    Thank You for your comments. Wear Special shoes or orthoses (shoe inserts) to create the curve. Good luck!!

  • #60

    Aqsa Hussain (Thursday, 04 February 2010 21:24)

    sir,
    you are an inspiration.i want to join the air force just like you but unfortunately i have flat feet and everybody is telling me that its not possible but i will still try.

  • #59

    Maaz Ali Malik (Thursday, 04 February 2010 08:21)

    Sir,
    hope you are in the best of health.first and foremost i am a student of BBa and always wanted to be fighter pilot.when i read your book i was awe struck at the scenario
    of pakistan's corrupt leadership at that time.however i must compliment your work deeply as you written quite well and have opened up a new genera of facts.i am also happy that you have given the ace pakistani pilots their dividend of valor , bravery in your book.As your true fan hope to meet you someday in islamabad. have lots of questions to ask ..Love your book

  • #58

    Gp. Capt. Khalid Latif (R) (Saturday, 23 January 2010 09:57)

    It is so pleasing to see some one passing on
    to this generation how far the PAF contributed
    in those wars. We lost for ever some of the
    finest persons and airmen. We mourn their deaths
    but feel proud of their spirit of sacrifice.
    Sir, the momories of the past are so bright.
    I wish it was possible to re-live the past.

    Sincerely,
    Khalid (No.2)

  • #57

    Kamal (Thursday, 21 January 2010 11:07)

    Sir,
    The book is an enjoyable and informative read, thank you. Firstly, while I commend your bravery, I must say I'm really surprised by how defensive you are with Mr. Malik's comments. I don't see him as undoing your work or the work or calibre of your brothers in arms. In any case, his are the opinions of one reader and one would think an author respects opinions, even if they are sometimes diametrically/violently opposite. So, please...hang your beret and pick your pen. You're an author, grandpa, and leader now, aren't you?

    There are several operational aspects that I was totally unaware of although I'm privy to some of the bungling that happened in '65 & '71 within and without the military establishment (my father was a contemporary of yours and my grandfather served the RAF).
    That said, at the risk of distraction, I want to supplement your rallying call for our people to unite and lift our nation from the mess we find it in today. One could write tomes on it but I will cover just one aspect: the leadership. Specifically, the vision and the management smarts that makes a good leader a great leader. I think this forum appropriate (as any, in fact) because if our leaders articulate the vision, guts, perception, and management prowess that you and a few exemplary others do, we could be on the right path again. In context, one of the serious deficiencies of our current society and polity is the endless articulation of base emotions, hollow patriotism, and unstudied judgments - whether no TV or newspapers or blogs. Invariably there is the cursory invocation of faith. I'm not saying patriotism or faith is not relevant but you know what I mean ... While there are people who can think rationally, all we see is emotional tripe based on not objective analysis of history and reality but naivete and misinformation. Not strategy but a whole set of unrelated tactical BS. That type of thinking is what has led us into a series of blunders including our 'Bleeding India' "strategies". We know how it is bleeding US. Now, I have never visited India but I have been to several countries and live in the USA where I have befriended several Indians with who I have frequent intense and passionate - but always respectful - arguments. I'm embarrassed to admit that I cannot have the same quality of discussions - forget respectful arguments - with my own countrymen. It always descends into something very base. What is with our education system?! Why are we so under-exposed? Why are we so insecure? The Sri Lankans are not. Not the Bangladeshis nor Nepalese. The Bhutanese? Let's not go into Gross National Happiness here. Anyway, my key point is this: we got to think strategic. We have to realize that we cannot depend on the charity or others - the Americans and the Saudis particularly. We have to BUILD our own infrastructure and live on the dole forever. We have to stop being afraid and insecure. We have to believe in higher goals and we have to organize ourselves better. If we don't educate our children beyond the very narrow "national goals" ( you know what those are), we are doomed forever. Importantly, we need the leaders, writers, businessmen, journalists, educators who can think and MANAGE thoughts, organizations, processes strategically and smartly. This is the one area we're losing out to not only India but several other countries with less potential than us. I'll leave you and your readers with a great piece of realpolitik writing by one of our own. This is the kind of thinking we have to do for ourselves. http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\01\21\story_21-1-2010_pg3_2

    Cheers and best wishes on the sale of your book.

  • #56

    Amreekan (Saturday, 19 December 2009 15:21)

    Sir, why do you call your web site "Falcon's nest" ?
    Is the falcon not a aggressive bird?

    Are you aggressive?

    Can you please answer the above questions. Thanks in advance
    Best Regards

  • #55

    richie rodrigues (Sunday, 13 December 2009 00:45)

    what matters in the end is the result,

    in 1965 it was a stalemate, 1971 pakistan was history, with its famed PAF nowhere in site in bengal

    they only used it intially to bomb the mukti bahani eg freedom fighter who had no anti aircraft gins

    once indian entered the war they were all grounded or blown out

    even in longewal they were never there i alway wondered why, any country who claims to have the best air firce or navy ect will use that arm of the armed force to its maximum advantage

    the pakistni armed forces have lost all wars or had stalemate , even the present war with taleban its struggling,

    the armed forces are heroes in pakistn only bec the military rules pakistn

    yes i argree there will alway be individual heroes in any military and pakstan is no exception , there will always be heroes in pakstani miltary who will sacrfice their life for their country,

    but as a military force it is not much against other countries but against its own people its great eg, bangali in 1971, balouchi, pusthoon, and now against taleban who are mostly pusthoon

    rgsd


    Richie

  • #54

    pilot jock (Monday, 30 November 2009 07:13)

    dear sajad uncle, im only 12 years old but I want you to know that u are a role model for me.
    I wanted to ask u if u could tag all the people in the photos in your photo gallery so that we admirers can know about the people who are standing near you
    My father was almost a PAF pilot but sadly, he could not pass the medical examination .Anyways, like u, I am a boy seeking a choice of uniform.I'M more into khaki but have'nt made my mind over joining the army or the air force. Could u give me some advice?

    your true fan,
    s.azhar h.naqvi

  • #53

    rubegeodin@yahoo.com (Monday, 16 November 2009 10:38)

    Sir,
    Firstly let me compliment u on a fine book,though i do not necessarily agree with all ur points of view.
    A brief intro about me: i"m from the "other side" ,still in uniform so thus remain anonymous.Pl bear with me.
    We share a common profession thus are bound by honour &deed regardless of the colour of the uniform. It was refreshing to know that so much of the services culture is common to both sides.There are brave men on both sides; and also the frauds n sycophants who critisize without ever having left their comfortable urban armchairs.They have NEVER put their lives on the line & never will. They will never know the smell of gunpowder & the moment when all that matters is victory or death.Unfortunately such pen pushers rule the roost!
    Ur description of the Srinagar raid was great & having flown in the valley for years i could literally picturise the mission.Ah, and yes the scenery is fantastic in summers.
    A bit of inputs of the attack by ur 18 Div in the desert.It was an audacious plan and may well have suceeded but for a band of brave "punjabis" under a resolute company cdr at Longewala.The tanks hit the minefield and then halted &started recceing left n right trying to find a way around.A few well placed anti tank RCL rounds added to their confusion and wasted precious time and so got daylighted.Thereafter the IAF had a field day.
    I will clear a few misconceptions here.Unlike what is populary led to beleive,the first strike of Hunters did NOT locate the enemy armour.Thereafter the Divisional Army AIR op got airborne in an unarmed Krishak Aircraft ,located the tanks and then guided the fighters onto the target.
    Yes,ur right the PAF was not present.A couple of Sabres/Mirages in the area and it would have been a diffrent story & probably Wingco Bawa and his flyboys wouldnt be bragging their mouths off today.Anyway,it was good fortune for us,bad planning for ur side.
    Our own armour never reached the battle zone intact as a viable fighting force.The AMX 13 tanks of the Div armoured regt all broke down enroute along the desert,leaving the Div Commander with a lifelong distrust of loudmouth cavalrymen.Ask me-i"m his son.
    Cheers & best regards.

  • #52

    who cares (Saturday, 14 November 2009 11:45)

    "A Mr. malik has made comments which were tantamount to attack on my personality and general denigration of PAF pilots. His assertions about my colleagues were contrived and unjustified."

    why does it matter for someone to contact you personally for posting their opinion.Take criticism like a man you claim to be and move on. FYI, On a public forum, you should expect opposing views: some palatable while others which will simply ruffle the feathers like case in point. Don't get too comfortable with accolades and welcome to free press pal!

  • #51

    Mr. X (Thursday, 12 November 2009 07:39)

    Sir....i have finally managed the guts to write to you...i am short of words...and my heart pounds as i make an attempt to converse directly with a hero of 65....AM Dilawar has been my next door neighbor since about 7 years and every time i see him i am awe struck...just knowing the fact that he crossed a jet into India...sorry for the long intro...i am a serving pilot who is struggling to recover the nose diving everything in PAF....i believe and i know that we are what we are today on the foundations built by all of you....God bless you sir and i wish S/L Rafiqui would have been alive today and Perhaps Air Force would have been so different....after reading your book i will again come back for so so many unanswered question regarding the heydays of PAF...

  • #50

    Yawar Shah (Friday, 30 October 2009 10:00)

    Dear Air Cdre Haider,

    I salute you for your magnificent book "Flight of the Falcon". I come from a military family and a Petarian, I could relate to 1965 and 1971 wars. Your indomitable spirit, boldly leading from the front against all odds, exemplify's the best in air combat, you made us all proud. Indeed the PAF is the pride of the nation. Not only have you been a hot shot pilot, you're accomplished writer too, you write beautifully. We await a sequel. You have served the nation beyond the call of duty in war and peace. God bless you.

    Yawar Shah
    Former President
    Canada Pakistan Assoc
    Ottawa, Ontario
    Canada

  • #49

    S.Murtaza H. Hasany (Monday, 12 October 2009 00:43)

    Dear Sajjad Saheb,
    I was watching your recent TV appearance on HUM TV with Naeem Bukhari Saheb. For me, watching & listening to our heroes, specially from defence forces, is an unexplainable phenomenon. Me and my wife, watch them with a streak of tears...tears of pride, thankfulness and appreciation and what not! I have a natural affinity towards PAF and always wanted (as a common facination in youth)to become an air fighter (but landed up in HR Consultant), also because one of my uncles was in PAF and served as GDP, Wing Commander Tayyab Hasany . I was a child in '71 and witnessed PAF sorties over Karachi....still thrills me. I watched you on TV this morning and decided to pay my tribute to you, dear sir. People like you are the pillers of this dwindling (hate to write this word for Pakistan) country, and I am sure that the strength of people like you will save this country. I love Pakistan and love its Armed Forces. You are hero of each and every aspirant of valor and excellence. May Allah bless you always, with health and happiness and with a prosperous life. InshaAllah, I will be locating and buying your new book Flight of the Falcon in Karachi. I wish I could have your signatures on this book.

    One who admires & respects a sepoy & an officer equally...Long & Ever live..Pakistan!

    S.Murtaza H. Hasany
    0333-2291733

  • #48

    Safdar Chaudry (Thursday, 01 October 2009 23:35)

    Salaam Sir,
    An exceptional and facinating reading, kudos to you for not only your courage and bravery in defending our GREAT COUNTRY but also for exposing the morally corrupt and characterless ruling elites. When in the States visiting your brother please come see us in Kansas. May Allah reward you for your selfless service to Pakistan and its defence. People like you give us hope for Pakistan as envisioned by Jinnah. Always the best!Hope to hear from you.

  • #47

    Atif Rasheed (Thursday, 17 September 2009 13:03)

    Got a reference to your website and really happy to see heroes like you on the www. I had a passion myself but luckily or unluckily failed to quality medical examination :). But really love to meet and hear from national heroes. Website is beautifully designed and built. Will get your book as well very soon. It's indeed a great initiative, you have really started a very good forum where we can hear from many other war and post war heroes. A lot of truth, sweet or bitter will come up :) but will be an eye opener. May Allah bless you health and prosperity. Ameen.

  • #46

    sajad haider (Sunday, 13 September 2009 07:41)

    A Mr. malik has made comments which were tantamount to attack on my personality and general denigration of PAF pilots. His assertions about my colleagues were contrived and unjustified. i have requested the moderator of www.sajadhaider.com to ask Mr. Malik to contact me on phone or through E-Mail sajad.haider@gmail.com. He is welcome to meet me at any time and discuss his comments. His second comment as to why his comments were not posted is answered above. i will have no problem posting his comments as long as they are relevant to the book and not hearsay about professional men.

  • #45

    Gp Capt R Muhammad Zubair (Friday, 11 September 2009 06:54)

    Dear Air Cdre
    I read yo book within 15 days of its launching. I had to acquire it from Pakistan since I am located in Qatar. I enjoyed it thoroughly specially since I was a witness to most of the war experiences, both in 1965 & 71. Being from the Air Defence and located at Sakesar, I could see the entire air activity. I have never been able to understand why Air Cdre Saeedullah was positioned at Sakesar where the entire ops were being run by the professionals. If anyhing, he was a hindrene in operations. To start with, he could not even see the situatin boards and had to be given binoculars. Even after that he had to be told the meaning of each symbal on the board. Apart from that I am unable to comment about his role in post war PAF. Yes I was also witness to the RT fiasco on the flypast ehearsaals---it was patheic, to say the least.
    Muhammad Zubair
    Gp Capt(r)

  • #44

    Kamran Sarwar (Sunday, 06 September 2009 16:19)

    Dear sir,↲just watching your interview on HUM TV. While getting inspired i am also searching the net and found your homepage. Will order your book as soon as possible.

  • #43

    Imran Akram (Wednesday, 02 September 2009 00:53)

    Just finished reading the book - could not put it down once I started. Commend your courage and forthright behavior as a PAF officer.

    Looking forward to the sequel. You must write it! I wish more of people of your generation came forward to record our difficult history.

    Thank you for your service to Pakistan.

    Imran Akram
    Washington, DC

    PS: Thanks for autographing my copy of the book. It was recently brought over from Pakistan by my father, your friend Maj Gen (R) Akram, VCGS during your GHQ stint.