American Contractor Praises Clinton: A Conflict of Interest?

Nov 10th, 2009 | By | Category: The News
Ikram Sehgal: Conflict of Interest?

Ikram Sehgal: Conflict of Interest?

In two recent pieces published in The News ‘Just Say No’ and ‘The Ultimate Defining Moment’, former army officer turned security consultant turned defense analyst Ikram Sehgal, praised Hilary Clinton’s recent visit to Pakistan. Since PMW believes in fighting for “A Free, Fair and Factually Correct Pakistani Media” we believe Mr. Sehgal should be upfront and come clean about his own ties.

Mr Sehgal is head of SMS Security Company which is tied up with Wackenhut Services, a US-based private security services provider. Wackenhut-SMS are one of the contractors who provide security to the American embassy and to Americans in Pakistan.

We find it very interesting that in his recent writings Mr Sehgal concentrated not just on praising Secretary Clinton but also repeatedly emphasized the need for Pakistan to accept the $7.5 billion US aid package. And yet Mr Sehgal has refused to point out that there is a ‘conflict of interest’ issue at heart.

Mr Sehgal has the right to write articles praising or critiquing people but his readers have an equal right to know that he is benefiting monetarily and professionally from the people he is praising in his article. We recommend that all media outlets require and publish full disclosure from themselves and those individuals that they invite to write or speak for their publication. With full disclosure, we will be able to judge the arguments of the speaker on the merits of his words.

As a side note: At PMW we believe in ‘equal opportunity’ and strive to correct factual and ethical errors in our media regardless of political alignment. Yesterday we had a piece on The Nation, which is a constant critic of US and US-Pakistan ties, and today we have a piece on Ikram Sehgal who supports these ties. If you have a tip about a factual or ethical error in any Pakistani media – regardless of the politics – please send us a tip at pakistanmediawatch@gmail.com so we can investigate and publish a correction. It is up to us to keep our media honest.

Tags: , , ,

Leave Comment

?>