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But constant stalling plagued them such that little of concrete and operational value has been inducted.
The PAF is nevertheless modernizing and by 2012 would have caught up with the IAF.
Yet there were times when India's political environment forced itself upon the IAF.
Forced to wait for a local replacement for its Mi G-21s that has been in development for over 20 years, and forced to abandon purchases because of political interference from within India, the IAF, on the turn of the century, found itself restrained. Years of sanctions led to the development of a joint project with China - the JF-17.
But the 1990s was a tough decade for the PAF and much of their prestige was lost.
Pakistan chose to invest in nuclear weapons and diverted resources there.
Two regional powers frequently at war, armed to the teeth, possessing nuclear weapons and with no end in sight to their mutual animosity.
And after 9/11 the doors to Western equipment and military aid opened up again.For wars today always begin in air combat, and the successor there often has Fate decide in its favor.The Pakistan Air Force has traditionally been known as one of the most professional air forces in the world.With induction in numbers of JF-17s and J-10s by the end of 2009, the PAF will see the gap vis-à-vis the IAF close rapidly.
Damaging sanctions against Pakistan also hurt the PAF more than any other armed service. The Indian Air Force meanwhile, found the 1990s most fruitful.They progressed in leaps and bounds as the Indian economy expanded, military equipment from the West and Russia opened up and the IAF started learning and incorporating Western standards of air combat.