Memogate: Not curtains yet

Published: November 19, 2011
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Another act of the sordid drama, billed as Memogate, has played out. The memo is out and it is a safe bet that the finale is yet to come.

As I have noted before, I don’t have much interest, beyond knowing facts, in names. For me, the story is the sorry tale of a state that has failed remarkably to address its principal contradiction, the civil-military imbalance.

So deep does the fault line run that we have, allegedly, the state’s highest office (note: the president represents the state, not any government) promise to a foreign power the taking of certain measures that, by most benchmarks of statecraft, would amount to handing over the functioning and monitoring of Pakistan to an external power. Not just that, but certifying that the military, of which the president of Pakistan is the supreme commander, is a rogue organisation in cahoots with al Qaeda and other terrorist groups.

The memo also tells the United States that if the Pakistani military were allowed to act unfettered, that would go against “your interests and ours”. Such is the tone that their interests come before our interests in nearly all the formulations in the memo. The “we” in the memo is prepared to fully cooperate with the US in putting down the military and helping the US monitor the sorry state of Pakistan and its strategic assets. This “we” also constitutes “the [stillborn] new national security team that will be inducted by the president of Pakistan with your [US] support in this undertaking”.

Questions abound but let me take just one in this short space.

One argument is that an elected government has the right to do what it deems fit and that being so, what’s the big deal. The national interest is to be defined by the civilians, not the military. If the civilians decide that the military is the bigger threat then what are we fussing about.

There are four major problems with this argument. One, does being the elected government justify appealing to a foreign power through a secret memo? Clearly, the memo was being kept secret because it would not only have upset the military but also many political actors who are legitimate entities within the constitutional system.

Two, what does mandate mean? Even the constitution requires, on extraordinary measures, that an issue be either put to a referendum (direct appeal to the people) or voted by two-thirds majorities of both houses of parliament. Did the elected government, if we are to invoke its authority under the constitution, present the issue to the right fora as dictated by the constitution, abiding by whose provisions is the touchstone of its legitimacy?

Three, going by the statistics, if we take the higher assessment of 44 per cent voter turnout in the 2008 elections, we have a straight figure of 56 per cent who didn’t vote. Out of the 44 per cent, the PPP is supposed to have bagged 30.6 per cent of the vote. This comes to about 10.6 million votes cast in favour of the PPP. Does this figure justify an elected government appealing to a foreign power instead of taking the people into confidence whose expression is being invoked to justify the authority of the government in the first place?

Four, being critical of the military’s political ambitions does not automatically mean a person or entity will also be given to diluting the state’s sovereignty by appealing to foreign powers. As both a realist and long-time critic of the military, I find this conflation ridiculous and the biggest danger faced by Pakistan.

On May 15, writing in this newspaper (“Righting the civil-military imbalance”) I had argued: “What is required now, if the civilians really want to avail this opportunity, is to (a) get down to the task of formulating a national security strategy; (b) make the defence committee of the cabinet effective with regular meetings; (c) appoint a strong minister of defence who understands the military and can force the service chiefs to obey his office; (d) create an external advisory body that deals with the military on the one hand and the prime minister plus cabinet on the other; (d) hold regular briefings by experts to the armed forces committee of parliament, which are placed on record; and, (e) ensure that all subordinate agencies/organisations are working to the same ends and purposes.

“This is not an exhaustive list. Many other steps can be taken. But these are some of the obvious ones…”.

I also cautioned against treating the issue as a zero-sum game. Little did I know at the time of what was happening in the shadows. But one thing must be said: this hasn’t happened for the first time, though this is the first formal evidence of what some of us tell Washington all the time.

Published in The Express Tribune, November 19th,  2011.

 

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Reader Comments (56)

  • Abbas from the US
    Nov 19, 2011 - 12:25AM

    Here is an interesting spin, In the last US elections Barrack Hussain Obama obtained about 52% of the total votes cast. And 63% of voters excercised their votes so in effect Obama represents actually less than a third of eligible voters with if this argument holds true. Does the writer think Obama should be putting every decision that he takes to a referendum to qualify for the practice of true democracy.

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  • Anonymous
    Nov 19, 2011 - 12:35AM

    What is the fuss about? Let me tel u that if we do not have honest army, these crook incompetent will sell our country and go and live in switzerland. We have listening and now sick of their attitude towards the middle class of this country. I gave exam for a govt job and got 2nd position in the country wide test but when it came to selection the peoples with safarish got jobs. Read news and tell me one good thing these politicians have done for masses apart from brutal corruption in every department and dnt forget the response of this demoncrazy govt during floods. Pakistan is losing fast in the region politicaly and economically and this govt doesnt seems to have any plan. PIA Failed, railways failed, corruption in power plants, hajj scandal, steelmil near to close, power shortages, high unempoyment, etc. When we read articles by the peoples like yourself we believe that either you are Cia or liberal high class trying to appease PPP and apparently ignorant of the extent of the people’s sufferings.Recommend

  • No one important
    Nov 19, 2011 - 12:54AM

    Small correction 100 minus 44 is 56 not 66 percent, other than that always enjoy your writing

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  • scorp
    Nov 19, 2011 - 12:55AM

    it’s 56% that didn’t vote not 66,who is the proof reader for this article!.anyways what’s wrong with the memo itself, all of those six points to be generally accepted ubiquitously except in pakistan,

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  • Noor Nabi
    Nov 19, 2011 - 12:58AM

    The full facts surrounding Memogate are still not out; although there are many unknown unknowns at this point in time almost everyone has a fair idea of what happened. Haqqani’s fingerprints are all over this initiative. He was utterly foolish to have trusted a snake to be the intermediary. However, all said and done, the ultimate objective of bringing the military establishment under civilian control is in Pakistan’s best long-term interests.

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  • F Khan
    Nov 19, 2011 - 1:02AM

    Good article but these are all points to be done to correct the civilian-military imbalance. In the present situation we all know there exist a memo from or President to the US. I am not one from the ghairat brigade bit still no respectable decent nation will allow a secret memo not sent through diplomatic channel laying bare things to be done on the behest of the foreign power to satisfy them and do things against its own state, country and the army.In any decent country the president, prime minister and the ambassador would have by now resigned.Period.The things to do list in the article can be and should done….this is all for the later.

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  • F Khan
    Nov 19, 2011 - 1:08AM

    @No one important & @scorp: You are right in highlighting the error but it still does not dilute the writers point or his logic that the majority did not vote for the PPP.

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  • Saladin
    Nov 19, 2011 - 1:25AM

    You forgot the take out the FAKE votes! Come on guys, this mandate isn’t even real…

    PTI Zindabad!

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  • I don't understand
    Nov 19, 2011 - 1:37AM

    No offense, but Mr Haider, can you please write your analyses in “user friendly” and “easy to understand” manner…..I believe you do have some good points, but you articles are getting seriously uninetresting because of the manner in which you write…

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  • faraz
    Nov 19, 2011 - 1:39AM

    Regarding the four problems you raised.
    1.The legally subordinate military can appeal to foreign powers against civilians but civilians cant assert their rights? Wikileaks revealed what Kiyani wanted to appoint Wali Khan as president.
    2.Referendum is not required for such issues. The military is subordinate to the assembly according to constitution. With 111 brigade few minutes away, you cannot hold referendums for such issues.
    3.Who stopped people from participating in elections? If 100 percent don’t vote, then no party should be considered the winner, and thus no elected government. This is a bogus argument.
    4.The army initially diluted the sovereignty of the state by nurturing dozens of local and foreign militant groups without the permission of the civilian government.

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  • Mir Agha
    Nov 19, 2011 - 1:49AM

    The current government acts as a dictatorial regime. Where did the talk of constitution, democracy, etc go? There subservience to their narrow interests and that of the neocons stand exposed. That’s why they’ll never be taken seriously in matters of national security because they’re more interested in ideology than democracy and Pakistan.

    Of course, this won’t stop conspiracy theorists like kamran shafi, rrumi, a siddiqa, taqi, farhat andersen from spewing they’re tried and tired rhetoric.

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  • Kataria
    Nov 19, 2011 - 1:55AM

    The ‘liberals’ love quoting the western media when it is anti-Pakistani without reason, why do they now attack the ‘prestigious’ FINANCIAL TIMES? Conspiracy much?

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  • Bigboy
    Nov 19, 2011 - 1:56AM

    Wow. Are all the rules only for the civilian governments? When the army takes over all arguments (the author has made four) seem to fly out of the window and all propriety is thrown to the winds. Pakistan was always ruled by the army, Allah and america, not necessarily in that order. The author must tell us something new. Recommend

  • Mirza
    Nov 19, 2011 - 2:01AM

    Should we coninue to let loose the forces which broke the country, hanged first elected PM, started multiple wars just to surrender later, are in bed with the worst terrorists, spread fanaticism in Pakistan and export to the world? Should we continue to let the big fat cats ride the poor masses? What a twisted logic to counter democracy and legitimize the deep state? It would be shameful to present this convoluted math and anti-people logic in any respectable forum. It has unmasked the mullah/military alliance face.

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  • Naan Haleem
    Nov 19, 2011 - 2:03AM

    I dont know how to translate the Urdu/Punjabi word/slang “AUQAAT” in English…. Clearly some people got more than their auqaat after BB’s assassination. This is just the outcome of such discrepancies.

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  • Ali Tanoli
    Nov 19, 2011 - 2:15AM

    Memo is another consipracy against our brave forces and these govt hungery civilions
    shame of them self.

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  • Traitor
    Nov 19, 2011 - 2:28AM

    I know that liberals will laugh over it but yes i dropped tears when i was reading the content of the memo. I just can not imagine how can some one ask another country to take hold of its most important security institution and tell the foreign power that everything will be done according to their wishes even the nuclear assets. Just horrifying and saddening stuff. O Allah help us in these difficult times when our own head of states are selling our country.

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  • Falcon
    Nov 19, 2011 - 2:28AM

    Agreed. Rather than calling on others to solve our problems, we should be able to work out solutions with our own institutions. Even if the intentions were good, and that is to align civil-military balance, the approach and execution was a fiasco. It is these strategic blunders that give away more power to the establishment.

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  • White Russian
    Nov 19, 2011 - 2:39AM

    I do not remember if Mr Haider ever had formulated his argument on these lines during Musharaf regime, when even boarding and unboarding on our airports was directly monitored by FBI and CIA. Problem with this writer is that he becomes a realist and pragmatist during military rule, and then suddenly assumes a pure principled position during civilian rule.

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  • Gahratmand
    Nov 19, 2011 - 3:50AM

    Gen Zia ul Haq conspired with foreign government entities to overthrow PPP Government of ZAB ….. This is a historical fact!

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  • You Said It
    Nov 19, 2011 - 4:36AM

    @Saladin
    PTI got 0% of the votes cast in the last election. By the argument that everyone is applying to the PPP, PTI has absolutely no right to speak and should just shut up.

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  • Arifq
    Nov 19, 2011 - 4:41AM

    Libyan opposition called upon the international community for support and was readily obliged, we all know the end result. Ejaz sahib, history is full of similar examples where the weak and terrorized has asked for foreign assistance, why is this case any different assuming this memo is real? No Sir, instead of focusing on the contents of the purported letter you should have been questioning it’s veracity, it’s rather unfortunate you chose the former.

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  • Maryam
    Nov 19, 2011 - 4:57AM

    I think 10 million of voters for the PPP are more than the One and only One Chief of the Army Staff General Pervaiz Ishfaq Kiyani.

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  • Babloo
    Nov 19, 2011 - 5:13AM

    There is no contradiction in Pakistan. Its army-cracy. Pure and simple. Contradictions only arise when you try to avoid the truth and make juvenile arguments that Pakistan is some kind of democracy.

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  • Venky
    Nov 19, 2011 - 7:43AM

    @No one important:
    What a valid find. I do not know is it a printing mistake or Army figures?

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  • Nov 19, 2011 - 7:57AM

    For a change, even though I am an Indian but I think the Pakistani army’s case on “Memo gate” is stronger vis a vis the civilian government. Zardari, even though an elected President, had absolutely no business to ask for American help to fix the Pakistani army Generals. Zardari’s intentions were correct but his execution of those intentions was terribly wrong. Pakistani civilian governments are powerless if not downright lame-duck; but still they must build public opinion in their favour to tackle the army. Zardari can take a cue from Myanmar’s Nobel prize winner, Aung San Suu Kyi, who battled her country’s military to bring real democracy and I don’t remember that she ever asked the Americans to topple Mayanmar’s military junta and put herself in power. Zardari’s act seems similar to the treason of Mir Jaffer, who joined hands with Robert Clive and ditched Siraj-ud-daula, which subsequently led to the British control of Bengal and then the rest of India.

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  • Truth Seeker
    Nov 19, 2011 - 8:12AM

    @Anonymous:
    As the whole society is corrupt ,so naturally the scum of the society comes to the surface which is ruling the country. Army is part of the same society, so it can not be declared as ‘purified’. Now the public has to decide as to how this society has to be cured of all the symptoms of corruptin and incompetence. Till then the whole society has to live under the shadow of media hype and conspiracy clouds, which are of no use to a common person except ‘Adrenalin rush for few moments, which subsides culminating in fatigue and weakness.Recommend

  • JSM
    Nov 19, 2011 - 8:17AM

    @Maryam
    Should we be expecting General Kayani to show his hand now?

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  • shekar
    Nov 19, 2011 - 9:16AM

    modify constitution to co-opt COAS and core commanders as MNA, pakistanis will have a brighter future

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  • observer
    Nov 19, 2011 - 9:22AM

    @EH

    All your fulminations about deep fault lines etc have to be seen in the backdrop of OBL being found nestling close to the bosom of the defenders of ideological and physical boundaries. Once we have that in view, understanding the memo becomes so much easier. And come to think of it the whistle-blower extraordinary has had a past. Care to put that in perspective too.

    Having said all that, here are my four counterpoints on ‘national interest’ and actions of national actors.

    A. Does being the instrument of jihad fi sabilillah mean that you have a monopoly over the state, its resources (including real estate) and its internal and external policies?

    B. Even if you do have that, would extraordinary action like Kargil, Mumbai and hosting OBL require a referendum of sorts.

    C. Well 10.6 million is still better than complete lack of any accountability for all actions, including ceding half the country in 1971 and some more in 2006.

    D. Foreign Powers? Ahem, Err, Duh, do I recall the ambassador of some foreign power consulting the Army Chief just before Bhutto was deposed. And the junta then went on to serve the interests of Powers other than Pakistan. Pakistan is still picking up the debris of that adventure.

    Now the million dollar question?

    If the regime and its ambassador to Washington are so closely aligned with Washington, why should they need the services of anyone else for a simple errand like delivering a letter?

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  • rehmat
    Nov 19, 2011 - 9:33AM

    @Author : You say”One, does being the elected government justify appealing to a foreign power through a secret memo?”

    SO the question is that if it was Zardar who requested Ijaz Mansoor to write the secret memo through Haqqani, then why did Mansoor write an OpEd about this?
    On the other hand if it is the army who did this false flag operation everything makes sense. As I recall it was the army NOT the civilian government which was under severe pressure in May for allowing the navy seals to fly in and out undetected. SO they must have wanted to regain sympathy and credibility and wrote this totally absurd memo and sent it to Mullen. Their expectation probaably was that Mullen would talk about this memo and people who were drifting awat from the army would line up behind the army again. When Mullen retired without even once referring to the memo in September, then in October Ijaz Mansoor wrote the OpEd.
    If Ijaz was collaborator of AZ and HH , it makes no sense for him to write the OpEd. Recommend

  • rehmat
    Nov 19, 2011 - 9:38AM

    @Sonam Shyam:
    1. Just because the memo exists, it does not mean that AZ and HH initiating it is also true. Please read Cyril Almeida’s article on Dawn on this subject.

    What is the evidence we have Mullen’s spokesman said there is a memo and Ijaz Mansoor wrote an OpEd. Pakistan is a country that even refuses to accept Ajmal Kasab and David Headley’s testimony in the courts of India and US as acceptable evidence. So compare the strength of that evidence with this evidence and tell me why the electronic media is using such doublestandards?
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  • Raj - USA
    Nov 19, 2011 - 9:57AM

    @Bigboy:
    As you say, Pakistan has always been ruled by /Army, Allah and America. Now why not give Asif a chance.

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  • Truth Seeker
    Nov 19, 2011 - 11:16AM

    @Naan Haleem:
    It is WORTH.

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  • zalim singh
    Nov 19, 2011 - 12:16PM

    Zardari is the best qualified to run Pakistan. Period.

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  • Parvez
    Nov 19, 2011 - 1:27PM

    Nicely argued. Even if our politicians and bureaucrats are innocent on this count their total lack of credibility automatically gives the opposite impression.

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  • Javed
    Nov 19, 2011 - 2:29PM

    @White Russian:
    In simple words, he butters both sides of the toast. Smart guy. I am sure he is related to Mansoor Ijaz

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  • meekal ahmed
    Nov 19, 2011 - 3:26PM

    When has any government taken the nation into confidence?

    Since the answer is “none” why should they do so now?

    I am sure this sort of thing goes on and has been going on for a very long while. Problem is when you put it in writing (as the Americans insisted) the electronic paper trail is easy to pick up. No rocket science there.

    Which makes me wonder why HH would be so absurd? Surely he must have known that MI was taping his conversation and that he was leaving a foot-print?!

    Furthermore, give HH’s connections in the US government why on earth would he turn to someone like MI. HH could have taken Zardari’s message directly to anyone in the State Department. He does not need MI or anyone else. Recommend

  • Harish Puri
    Nov 19, 2011 - 3:33PM

    Ejaz, could you please respond to the comment made by Abbas from the US on whether (by your logic) President Obama needs to hold a referendum every time he needs to take a policy decision?

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  • Rao Amjad Ali
    Nov 19, 2011 - 3:50PM

    Based on the published SMS traffic between Ambassador Haqani and Mr. Mansoor, there is plethora of evidence to show that the Ambassador is in fact the architect of the memo.

    In carrying covert missions, much of the intelligence communication is protected under the rubric of what is commonly known as “plausible deniability”, espcially of the kind currently at hand, which is what Ambassador Haqani seems to have done but with criminal neglect as he left behind a trail of information that clearly leads to his door step.

    Be that as it may, we still do not know whether the Ambassador acted alone or under the advice of President Zardari or Prime Minister Gillani or both. And, of course, we have still not heard anything from Foreign Minister Khar who is after all Amabassador Haqani’s immediate boss.

    Unless Ambassador Haqani is willing to be the fall guy, we need to know what was the chain of command, if any, who authorized such an unprofessional exercise.

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  • shahid
    Nov 19, 2011 - 4:01PM

    Brilliant and sensible analysis unlike many on the subject!

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  • scorp
    Nov 19, 2011 - 4:33PM

    in the same transcripts monsoor ijaz says “I was just informed by senior US intel that GD-SII Mr P asked for, and received permission, from senior Arab leaders a few days ago to sack Z. For what its worth”
    how come this point is clearly/conveniently missing from the Pakistani media ,if HH is a traitor,pasha is as much a traitor if not more..Pakistani media hellbent on blood hunt of HH and zordari, definitely not a surprise though

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  • AD
    Nov 19, 2011 - 4:52PM

    There sould be a treason case against haqqani and the top officials involved. we are sick of these statesmen.Recommend

  • samia
    Nov 19, 2011 - 5:03PM

    I really do not think zardari should have done this. They could have at least chosen a more reliable way to pass on the message. Now the memo is out and its extremely embarrasing for our country.
    However what I am interested to know is if the contents of that memo are true. Was the army really pressurizing Zardari and and Gillani to take responsibility for OBL and are they actually planning another misadventure?
    Please can’t the army men just leave us alone for a couple of years. This country has been ruled by them for majority of its inception and they have taken it backward rather than forward. Don’t they already have enough troubles e.g. taliban in the north, India increasing its power in the east, Afghanistan attacking us, American threats every other day.

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  • Ishrat Salim
    Nov 19, 2011 - 5:13PM

    The Civilian – military imbalance can only be corrected when the political parties are not corrupt & their actions are only in the interest of the country….under the present govt & political parties…none have the moral ground to put pressure on the military as they are ” corrupt to the core ” & it is an open secret….

    By the way…Mr Ejaz…your articles are always refreshing….but alas ! we hv gone intellectually bankrupt to understand & analyse what people of your calibre are always ” warning ” thru your write-ups, but thse politicians & people in the govt are least bothered as they are busy looting….

    How long will these people live to loot & plunder…..it is time that Allah has started to pull its rope ” inward ” due to the ” badthduas ” of the poor people…..Alhamdolillah….Recommend

  • Jawad
    Nov 19, 2011 - 6:17PM

    @Abbas from the US:
    Obama cannot unilaterally make decisions , he has to take permission from CONGRESS which is elected every two years…also obama has just carried on Bush’s Foreign Policy…he to was afraid of a military coup and being killed like JFK

    In Pakistan we cant allow these materialistic parties to decide foreign or defence policy

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  • Jawad
    Nov 19, 2011 - 6:19PM

    @faraz:
    Kayani didnt want to do anything , he only thought out loud
    Pakistan never trained terrorist, it had a foreign policy, all countries especially india use militans for foreign policy

    Army doenst need Civilian Permission for everything . All Civilians support using all resources to counter India

    even in ameria,CIA launhed many operations with out Obama permission

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  • Shakir Lakhani
    Nov 19, 2011 - 9:07PM

    Why doesn’t anyone recall that a similar thing happened in Nawaz Sharif’s government, when Shahbaz Sharif went to the U.S. to meet Clinton and got the latter’s guarantee that the army would not overthrow it?

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  • sadhana
    Nov 19, 2011 - 9:59PM

    Did any of the Pak military coups happen after holding a referendum?

    Did the Pak military hold a referendum before deciding to pour money into Afghan jihad, Kashmir jihad and the current Afghan Taliban policy?

    Was Osama Bin Laden brought back to Afghanistan in mid 1990s by ISI/Hamid Gul after holding a referendum?

    Was 2 billion dollars of Afghan jihad given to Gulbuddin Hekmatyar by Pak govt and Pak mil after holding a referendum? Were Taliban backed by Pak govt and Pak mil from 1994-2001 after holding a referendum?

    Did Musharraf attack in Kargil after holding a referendum and then subsequently take over govt after holding a referendum?

    Has Pakistan military been at war with both Pakistan’s neighbors for 30 years after holding a referendum?

    No. But I think Pak military has full public support for everything it does/did. Time the elected ultraliberals admitted it and hand over the running of Pakistan to the military and its religious jihadi supporters which alone have public legitimacy.

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  • Hashmi
    Nov 20, 2011 - 1:07AM

    Controversies such as this are doing nothing but failing the democracy again and again.

    It will take us to a point where people will be calling for a Coup de tae and an Army rule. Then that will again bore our people and we will shout for democracy again.

    Whatever the article tries to bring forward, every analysis is shouting out aloud the incompetency of this govt. and bringing up the idea of Army rule and proving the martial laws as a better option. And sadly this is the truth.

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  • Abz
    Nov 20, 2011 - 1:27AM

    I don’t think that Pakistan should be governed by the military but I’m sure they’d do better than the spineless politicians ruling our country now. They probably have real degrees aswell.

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  • Ahsan Junejo
    Nov 20, 2011 - 4:38AM

    @Jawad: You have no idea how totally frustrated, deeply depressed and utterly disgusted I get when I realize the sad fact that the majority of my countrymen think like you do. It’s down to the decades of collective brainwashing that all of us common people have been put through by those who are our protectors and should be subservient to us but ironically have been ruling us directly and indirectly, politically and economically, for the 65 years since independence. Just like what was done to the German people after World War II, we all (entire Pakistani society, top to bottom, establishment to peasant) need to have the truth (that we have been running away from for decades) bashed into our brains by being sent back to schools where we can be re-educated in real (and not fake) history. The only sane public voice that gives me hope in this country is that of Pervez Hoodbhoy — and I live in fear of the day when he too will be murdered in cold blood and millions like you will be cheering on the streets calling his killer a “Ghazi”.

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  • rehmat
    Nov 20, 2011 - 4:45AM

    @Kataria:
    “The ‘liberals’ love quoting the western media when it is anti-Pakistani without reason, why do they now attack the ‘prestigious’ FINANCIAL TIMES?”

    I do not believe anyone is attacking Financial Times. People are atacking Ijaz Mansoor – a very different thing. What people do not believe is that Ijaz Mansoor is telling the truth when he accuses AX and HH of being behind the memo. It is much more likely that he is actng on behalf of the army to discredit the government.

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  • Ahsan Junejo
    Nov 20, 2011 - 5:11AM

    Coming to the memo itself, I agree with each and every one of the six points mentioned in it. In any other country in the world, all the points mentioned in the memo would not only be the openly enunciated political and strategic objectives of the government, but even the civilized population would be solidly behind those objectives. Unfortunately, not so in our Pakistan. In fact, I am saddened by the telling fact that our weak civilian government had to resort to ask for the permission and protection of a foreign Naval admiral to put its own military accountable to and under itself. But it’s a fact nonetheless — why blame the civilian officials for doing the obvious?Recommend

  • sajid
    Nov 20, 2011 - 5:22AM

    @ Jawad
    and the army is not materialistic? The only reason they are starting this memo drama is to protect their real estate projects, sugar mills, cement factories and shadi halls.

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  • observer
    Nov 20, 2011 - 9:54AM

    Since the whole brouhaha is about ‘direct intervention’ being solicited from a foreign power, in the face of domestic difficulties. Why are we losing sight of the history of past direct interventions.

    A. When a be-seized ZAB was on the verge of striking a deal with the opposition the ambassador of, a foreign power held consultations with the then COAS. And as they say, The rest is History’.

    B. On another occasion, another elected PM had already been deposed and incarcerated on charges of ‘aircraft high-jacking’ (without being anywhere near the aircraft). Now, this deposed PM was also taken out of Pakistan after ‘direct intervention’ of a foreign power.The country, of course, was under the thumb of the defenders of the ideological boundaries of the land of the pure.

    As Kamran Shafi said, the affair does not pass the smell test.

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