Husain Haqqani’s Anti-Pakistan Spin And Solution To Terrorism
To write in New York Times, you have to be Husain Haqqani and you have to endorse America’s official line, says a Columbia scholar.
Special Report | Thursday | 31 May 2012
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan—A Pakistani scholar of international affairs at Columbia University has accused President Zardari’s aide and former ambassador in Washington Husain Haqqani of launching a tirade against Pakistan in the American media.
Haqqani received a special favor to write an article in the New York Times earlier this month. Reading the article it is easy to understand why the US government tried desperately to save Haqqani and get him out of Pakistan, saving him a possible treason trial.
Waqas Aslam Rana, enrolled in the Master of International Affairs program at Columbia, wrote a column in The News International, Pakistan’s largest English-language newspaper. Rana’s intelligent counterarguments shatter the premise of Haqqani’s list of accusations against Pakistan where the former envoy actually accused the Supreme Court of Pakistan of supporting terrorism.
Rana establishes an interesting link between US government, Haqqani and NYT in the following excerpt:
“It is not easy to get published in the New York Times, unless your name is Husain Haqqani. His article titled ‘How Pakistan Lets Terrorism Fester’ published in the Times on May 10 did not surprise me in the least; anyone who has been following the man’s career would have the same reaction.
But Haqqani’s latest piece of writing included something new and dangerous; maligning the superior judiciary of Pakistan in the media of his de-facto homeland. One shudders to think that the person writing these words was our ambassador in Washington until recently.
Haqqani directly accused the courts of allowing terrorism to foster by releasing various militants captured by security forces. He very conveniently failed to mention that the burden of proof in any legal system lies with the prosecution, which in this is the government of his current patron Asif Zardari. He would have us believe that it is not just the army and ISI who are harboring terrorists. The Supreme Court is in on the act as well. No wonder the American administration tried so desperately and succeeded in extricating Haqqani from the Memogate fiasco.”
How Pakistan Should
Aside from exposing Haqqani, who is discredited and loathed in Pakistan anyway and widely seen as a paid foreign agent, Rana makes a smart case on how Pakistan should not listen to the American recipe for solving the problem of terrorist violence. Instead, he offers a more realistic approach suited to the situation on the ground.
Rana says that mainstream American newspapers will not allow any Pakistani to write on their pages unless he or she adheres to three ideas:
1. That militant Islamic ideology presents an existential threat to Pakistan
2. That it is homegrown
3. That an endless military campaign is the only solution
According to the Columbia scholar, the three ideas are ‘myths’ that US government policymakers and their Pakistani collaborators promote.
Rana’s two counterarguments are simple:
4. While Pakistanis are devout Muslims, extremism of any form including religious never gets votes in elections.
5. Terrorism inside Pakistan is as much a result of US and NATO occupation in Afghanistan as it is due to domestic factors.