Friday, November 21, 2008

After Benazir Bhutto's Death - 13

Hussain Haqqani [Pakistan Ambassador to the United States/Earlier he was a Militant of Islami Jamiat Talaba [Mawdudi's Jamat-e-Islami's Student Wing]

As per the news of The News International dated [December 17, 2007] Nahid Khan, the political secretary to Benazir Bhutto, has withdrawn her nomination papers in protest over the awarding of a PPP ticket to Farahnaz Ispahani. According to party sources, Nahid Khan was not happy with the award of the party ticket to Farahnaz Ispahani, the wife of Hussain Haqqani, and has informed Benazir Bhutto about withdrawing her nomination papers saying she cannot sit in the National Assembly with Ms Ispahani. Prior to marrying Farahnaz Ispahani, Hussain Haqqani was married to Naheed Khan’s sister. That could be the reason why Ms Khan did not want to sit with Ms Ispahani in the National Assembly. [1]

Let’s have quick look of Mr Hussain Haqqani’s [Nowadays an American Scholar who lecture on Democracy] dirty and filthy past while he was part and parcel of Army-Jamat-e-Islami Axis which is riddled witch scandals and corruption. A detailed CV of Husaain Haqqani is at the end to corroborate the comment.

With brainwashing on the one hand and erosion of academic freedom on the other, the campuses (once temples of learning and enlightenment) have been turned into centres of rowdyism and repositories of deadly weapon. Students belonging to various schools of religious thought, regional and ethnic groups, particularly the Islami Jamiat-e-Tulba (the student wing of Jamat-e-Islami) , have played havoc with educational institutions. Professors were another target of the victimization carried out in this period. Members of the IJT launched a concerted campaign against professors known for their liberal views. In Punjab University, particularly, many professors were forced to resign, others were sacked.

The situation was no different in the Quaid-e-Azam University, Islamabad, which had in the 70s attracted many brilliant Pakistanis who were teaching abroad. As the harassment became unbearable, most of these professors went back. To what extent fundamentalists blocked scientific knowledge can be assessed by one incident at the Karachi University, where a zoology lecturer was stopped from teaching Darwin’s Theory of Evolution. Similar incidents occurred frequently in the philosophy and the economics department. The situation has worsened wit the passage of time. During that period, a policy of appeasement towards the IJT made matter worse. Guns boomed at the Karachi University Campus for the first time in 1979 when, according to Imran Shirvanee, Raja Javed, a supporter of IJT, used a sten gun ‘to tackle the opposition.’ When the pen and free expression are throttled, the only means open to tackle opposition is a firearm. At that time, the IJT was the ruling party in Karachi University politics with Hussain Haqqani, Raja Javed was his close aide.

Haqqani is a man of many roles. The former Far Eastern Economic Review correspondent was the media advisor to Punjab Chief Minister Nawaz Sharif when Benazir Bhutto was at the centre {1988-1990}. He switched to serve caretaker Prime Minister Ghulam Mustafa Jatoi in 1990, and then switched back again to serve Sharif when he was elected Prime Minister. In 1992, he was sent to Sri Lanka as Pakistan’s High Commissioner. On the eve of Nawaz Sharif’s dismissal on 18 April 1993, he jumped the sinking ship and joined President Ghulam Ishaq Khan bandwagon. Immediately, he was rewarded by being made a special assistant to the caretaker Prime Minister Mir Balakh Sher Mazari with the rank of Minister of State. Asked by BBC if he now deserved a mention in the Guinness Book of Records for switching loyalties so often, his reply was classic: I was always with the President.’” [2]

Mr Haqqani. Right from this student politics with the Jamaat's student wing, the dreaded Islami Jamiat-e-Tulaba, at Karachi University there is much that Mr Haqqani is answerable for. The violence at the university and the brutal suppression of free speech that the IJT imposed on the campus in those days was done with Mr Haqqani very much an active player. Many still say that he was the architect of the IJT's policy of using brute force to suppress opposition opinion. We next saw him on PTV - which was a kind of a launching pad for him -during the 1985 partyless elections. It was an election which destroyed Pakistan's politics in more ways than one and much that we see wrong with Pakistan's politics today dates back to that election. It was because of the destructive potential of the election that every liberal and progressive party in the country boycotted those elections. Yet there was Mr Haqqani at his most articulate, lauding the farcical exercise as if it was the best thing that had happened to the country since its birth.

Indeed, his laudatory commentary on the 1985 elections won him a front seat in the club of those who make a career out of legitimizing dictatorships. Having become General Ziaul Haq's "favourite soldier of Islam", he next spearheaded the ugliest election campaign in the country's history. In 1988 as a paid advisor to Nawaz Sharif, he was the architect of the nasty smear campaign against Benazir Bhutto - which ranged from branding her a security risk to air-dropping leaflets showing photographs of her relaxing by the poolside in a revealing swimming costume. Mr Haqqani was instrumental in bringing down an elected government - through the good offices of the Pakistani Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) - by turning the Punjab against the Centre. By doing so, he helped lend further legitimacy to the 8th Amendment which in time proved to be the death blow for democracy in Pakistan.

It is a known fact that for the first two years of General Musharraf's dictatorship, Mr Haqqani was happily running a lucrative consultancy with major government departments as his clients. Anyone who knows Pakistan knows that such contracts are only obtained through political connections which Mr Haqqani obviously had. And when he went to jail, it was over some fall out with his business associates who clearly had better connections than him. As far as going to jail for political convictions is concerned, we all know where Mr Haqqqani stands. Bhutto's attempts at releasing political prisoners - some of them having served 10 years under Zia for committing absolutely no crime - were fiercely resisted by Mr Haqqani. Everyone in Lahore knows the lengths to which he went in branding those political prisoners "criminals" and attributing the deteriorating law and order situation in the Punjab (under Mr Haqqani's employer Mian Nawaz Sharif) to their release. That is how much he cares for political convictions.

Curriculum Vitae of Husain Haqqani [3]

Date and Place of birth: Karachi (Pakistan) July 1, 1956.

Education: M.A. (International Relations) University of Karachi 1980, with Distinction. B.A. University of Karachi, 1977, with distinction.

Career: Journalism

• Started career as a journalist while still at High school.

• Numerous articles on national and international politics published by Pakistan’s leading newspapers ‘Jang’ (Urdu) and ‘Dawn’ (English) while still a student.

• Worked in Hong Kong as East Asian Correspondent for the London-based ‘Arabia-the Islamic World Review’ --- 1980 to 1984. Wrote extensively on Muslims in China and East Asia and Islamic political movements in the aftermath of the Iranian revolution of 1979.

• Pakistan and Afghanistan correspondent for ‘Far Eastern Economic Review’ ---1984-1988. Covered Pakistani politics, India-Pakistan relations and the war in Afghanistan. Frequently interviewed Pakistan’s military ruler and President General Ziaul Haq and key international figures dealing with South Asia.

• Contributed to Voice of America radio ---1984-86. Covering the war in Afghanistan contributed to deep understanding of militant Islamist (Jihadi) groups.

• Since 1988 --- Contributes opeds and articles to several national and international publications. Articles have been published in ‘The Wall Street Journal’, 'The New York Times', 'Boston Globe', ‘Financial Times, London,’ , ‘International Herald Tribune’, 'South China Morning Post', 'Indian Express'. 'The Hindu', ‘Toronto Globe and Mail’, 'The Ottawa Citizen' , ‘Arab News’, ‘Gulf News’ and ‘Le Monde’.

• Syndicated columnist for the 'The Indian Express', ‘Gulf News’ and the Pakistani newspaper 'The Nation'.

• Also, appears regularly in television news shows on BBC, CNN, NBC and ABC, commenting on Pakistan, South Asian affairs, Afghanistan and Islamic politics and radicalism Government

• Special Assistant to the Chief Minister Punjab--- 1988-1990. During this period, served as main opposition spokesman. Represented the opposition at international forums, including in negotiations with the U.S. government. Got an opportunity to witness Pakistan’s transition from direct military rule to sharing of power between military and the civilians.

• Special Assistant to Prime Minister Ghulam Mustafa Jatoi--- 1990. Served during the First Gulf War and accompanied the Prime Minister during his Middle East visit following the Iraqi occupation of Kuwait.

• Special Assistant and Principal Spokesman to Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif ---1990-1992. Represented the Prime Minister in talks with the U.S. government over imposition of sanctions in retaliation for Pakistan’s nuclear program. Attended several international meetings, including the Commonwealth Summit at Harare, Zimbabwe. Accompanied the Prime Minister in official visits to Saudi Arabia, France, Britain, India and Bangladesh. Undertook ‘trouble shooting’ to India.

• Pakistan’s Ambassador to Sri Lanka---1992-93.Youngest person to serve as Pakistan’s Ambassador abroad. Was closely involved in expanding the role of South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC). Attended the SAARC summit in Dhaka, Bangladesh.

• Spokesman to Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, with the rank of a Minister of State, and Federal Secretary for Information and Broadcasting ---1993-95. Accompanied the Prime Minister in official visits and negotiations in Ireland, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Iran, Turkey, Britain, Japan, South Korea, Germany and Switzerland.

• Also served as Chairman, House Building Finance Corporation (HBFC)--- 1995-1996.Teaching and Research and Analysis

• Founded Communications Research Strategies (CRS), a consulting company ---1996-to 2002. During this period advised and wrote political-economic analytical reports for corporations including Pakistani affiliates of Procter and Gamble, British-American Tobacco, and British Airways.

• Visiting Scholar at Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in Washington DC --- 2002 to present. Recent publicationsinclude America's New Alliance with Pakistan: Avoiding the Traps of the Past (Policy brief, Carnegie Endowment, 2002); The Gospel of Jihad (Foreign Policy magazine, September-October 2002); Islam's Medieval Outposts (Foreign Policy, November-December 2002; The American Mongols (Foreign Policy, May-June 2003; Pakistan’s Endgame in Kashmir (India Review, July 2003).

• Professorial Lecturer at School of Advanced International Studies John Hopkins University, Washington DC --- at present.

• Guest lectures at Cornell University, University of Texas at Austin, University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, University of California Berkeley, Stanford University, School of Advanced International Studies Johns Hopkins University, George Washington University Washington DC, and University of Maryland.

• Chapters in books on Afghanistan and Kashmir under publication. Currently working on a book on the Islamic revivalist movement’s transition from political Islam to militancy.


1- Upset Nahid Khan opts out of polls By Rauf Klasra, Asim Yasin & Dilshad Azeem [1] Monday, December 17, 2007, Zill-Haj 6, 1428 A.H.
2- The Web of Censorship by late. Zamir Niazi published by Oxford University Press.

3- Husain Haqqani Career Curriculum Vitae of Mr. Hussain Haqqani.]

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