By Lt Col (R) Rashid Zia Cheema, Air Def/Avn (2nd SSC)
PA-15 Lt Gen Mohammed Yousuf Khan Afridi
Date of Commission: 31 Jan 1929.
Parent unit: 7th Light Cavalry.
He was affectionately called “Joe” by his friends.
He raised and commanded 12 Div. Also served as GOC 7 Div, 8 Div and 14 Div. He holds the record of commanding four infantry divisions.
He was also CGS.
He was an excellent horseman, one of the best polo players of his time.
He was also a very successful diplomat after his army career. He was appointed as High Commissioner to Australia, starting a diplomatic career which lasted for twenty years, serving in Canberra, London (twice) Kabul, Switzerland and Portugal.
He proved his metal as a great diplomat during his short tenure at Kabul in 1964. He had convinced King Zahir Shah to visit Pakistan and conclude a treaty which would have ended all conflicts between Pakistan and Afghanistan. Gen Ayub Khan instead of listening to a fellow comrade from Sandhurst and brother in arms decided to take advice of the sycophants around him. King Zahir Shah had to cancel his visit.
He is a graduate of The Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, UK. His son Capt Asif Khan Afridi (16th PMA) is also a graduate of Sandhurst. It was the second instance of a father and son of Pakistan Army who both got training in Sandhurst, The first instance was of Gen Ayub Khan and his son Capt Gohar Ayub (14th PMA).
Yousuf Afridi was PA-15.
Gen Muhammad Yousaf Khan
Date of Commission: 31 March 1966.
Course: 37 PMA, it was converted into a short course.
Parent unit: Guides Cavalry.
He was also affectionately called “Joe” by his friends.
He served as VCOAS from 8 October 2001 to 6 October 2004.
List of More ‘Joes’
This Post was also shared on Facebook. The following list of ‘Joes’ has been compiled from the comments of Facebook and this Post:-
1. Lt Col Yousafzad Gul (47th PMA) of 6L. He is son of Lt Col Shiabzad Gul (Shaheed), SJ of 1965 War, also from 6L.
2. Lt Col Tahir Bin Yousaf (46th PMA).
3. Maj Joseph, Baluch Regt.
4. Maj Yusuf Niazi (46th PMA), 7FF.
5. Maj Gen Shahid Ahmed Khan (Late)(60th PMA), Guides Cav, was also called ‘Joe’ by his close friends.
6. Lt Gen Muhammed Yusuf, Arty, (1st SSC) is also known as ‘Joe’ among his colleagues.
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