Is Jang Group Paying Former CIA Officials?

Apr 19th, 2011 | By | Category: Jang, The News

The News (Jang Group)

The News (Jang Group) on Saturday selectively quoted a foreign newspaper as the basis for an article making unsupported claims that President Zardari allowed US to boost drone strikes. Today, Jang Group repeated this misleading practice in a front page article that appeared in both The News and Daily Jang. Only this time, the article was actually written by a former CIA official.

The article appearing in both The News and Daily Jang bears a bold headline that Zardari has accused Army of playing double game. However, if readers read the full article they will find that there is no evidence of such an accusation except for one sentence from an article in the US magazine Newsweek by Bruce Riedel, a former CIA officer.

Even Pakistan’s own president, Asif Ali Zardari, has accused the Army of playing both sides of the war on terror—distressingly, an abundance of evidence backs him up. Take Lashkar-e-Taiba, the terror group that attacked the Indian financial capital of Mumbai in 2008, killing 164 people.

The article by former CIA officer Bruce Riedel mentions Zardari exactly two times. Once is the claim that Zardari accused the Army. This was picked by Jang Group for the headline. The other mention of Zardari though praises him for wanting to improve relations with India and end terrorism.

The trick, for everyone involved, is to help strengthen those forces in Pakistan that want to get out of the endless rivalry with India. Then, end Pakistan’s dance with terror. For all his faults, Zardari is one of those who want a different approach.

Why this was not picked as the headline: ‘Zardari wants to improve relations with India, end terror’ which is equally supported by the article?

If you have not read the full Newsweek article and these sentences by the former CIA officer sound very familiar, it is because the same words will be found in both The News and Daily Jang also. Actually, Jang Group has re-printed the Newsweek article word for word in its entirety.

Therefore, the question must be asked whether Jang Group plaigarised the article from Newsweek. I would not want to accuse Jang Group of plaigarism, so perhaps it is the alternative that Jang Group is paying former CIA officers to write their articles.

Actually, the case is much simpler. It appears that once again Jang Group ‘investigative journalists’ are only investigating ways to embarrass the president for political points rather than performing the task of producing factual reporting to inform readers about events affecting the country. On Saturday, The News took a quote from a foreign newspaper out of context to embarrass the president. Today they appear to have lifted an entire article from the foreign press. The point that is being missed however is that, in their attempts to embarrass the president, Jang Group is only embarrassing themselves.

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  1. I am surprised how this blog and other media related blogs come up with article after article against jang group itself or people related with it. is it the only culprit in our entire media?

    Disclaimer: I am just an ordinary blog reader and not in anyway related to Jang group

  2. @Haris

    Thank you for your excellent question. No, Jang Group is certainly not the only culprit in our entire media, and if you look through this blog and other media blogs I think you will find that all the media groups are covered. That includes Dawn, Daily Times, The Nation, Samaa TV, Aaj TV…the list goes on and on.

    If Jang Group may seem to get more coverage on media watchdog sites I think that is due to Jang Group’s success as one of the largest media groups and also it cannot be denied the tension with government has resulted in some mistakes as we have pointed out. It should also be noted that this blog has defended Jang Group when they were unjustly targeted and have always insisted that freedom of media is a basic right.

  3. Here is that “Crucial” Column “Kamran Khan” wrote in support of Martial Law

    Ambitious Ziauddin steered Nawaz to political disaster News Intelligence Unit By Kamran Khan [AS QUOTED IN Fears of a Military Coup in Pakistan Chowk P Room October 12, 1999

    ISLAMABAD: Within half an hour of his surreptitious climb to the post of the Chief of Army Staff on Tuesday afternoon, the former Inter-Services Intelligence chief, General Khawaja Ziauddin knew that the Army he was supposed to lead was not prepared to accept his command. The News Intelligence Unit (NIU) has gathered that all of Ziauddin`s phone calls to the Corps Commanders and the Chief of General Staff — placed from the Prime Minister`s House in Islamabad on Tuesday — drew a blank, a reaction that almost instantly drew down the curtains on former prime minister Nawaz Sharif`s second term in office. Debriefing sessions with detained aides of the Nawaz Sharif administration by security officials here have disclosed that the former ISI chief-led operation to stage an in-house coup in the Army was driven by his personal ambitions ignoring the actual situation on the ground. “Even a layman in Pakistan is aware that any operation of this sort can never be completed without the active support of the troops and commanders posted in the cities of Islamabad and Rawalpindi,“ an Army official commented. “It was foolish of the former prime minister not to be aware that his nominee for the Army chief didn`t have the key support of the 10 Corps and more specifically the 111 brigade,“ he added. It has now become clear that Lt. Gen. Ziauddin was the architect of the secret operation that envisioned the official announcement of his promotion to the post of COAS once Gen Pervez Musharraf boarded PIA Flight PK 805 in Colombo for a journey that severed his contact with the GHQ for a good 200 minutes. It was also Lt. Gen. Ziauddin who, along with the former principal secretary Saeed Mehdi, had suggested to Nawaz Sharif that General Pervez Musharraf`s plane must not be allowed to land at Karachi so that he could be arrested at any other less busy airports in Sindh.

    Sources said that Ziauddin had assured Sharif that he would gain the full command of the Army much before the landing of General Pervez Musharraf`s plane at Karachi airport, a dream that suddenly transformed itself into Sharif and Ziauddin`s worst nightmare. Officials here believe that because of his family and, more particularly, his father`s old ties with Khawaja Ziauddin`s family, Sharif always wanted to appoint him to the coveted post of the COAS, but he couldn`t do that since he had ignored a senior-most three star general as General Jehangir Karamat`s replacement. Several close aides to Sharif had often conceded in the past that Gen Kuli Khan Khattak was ignored because Sharif was not comfortable with a Pathan general.

    Ziauddin, an officer from the Army`s Corps of Engineers, was one course junior to Gen. Ali Kuli Khan and Gen. Pervez Musharraf at the Pakistan Military Academy, but even before Karamat`s dramatic exit from the Army, Ziauddin had told his friends about the likelihood of his replacing Gen. Jehangir Karamat. Sources said that General Karamat had posted him as the Corps Commander, Gujranwala in response to a personal request from Sharif, who wanted to give him a fair chance at the time of Karamat`s retirement. Those who had close access to Sharif always contended that his decision to appoint Gen Musharraf was a stopgap arrangement between Gen. Karamat`s abrupt resignation and Ziauddin`s eventual appointment as the COAS. Ziauddin`s appointment as the ISI chief, minutes after Musharraf`s posting as the COAS, spoke volumes of Sharif`s bent of mind at the time. With the knowledge that doubts deliberately created about Musharraf`s tenure as the COAS would further deteriorate worsening relations between the Army and the former prime minister, Ziauddin using his position as the ISI chief nonetheless invented an intriguing conspiracy theory on the Kargil crisis and helped fuel misinformation that the Army leadership got Sharif trapped by launching the Kargil operation.

    During the Kargil crisis, Gen. Ziauddin`s exclusive briefing to the former prime minister almost always contradicted the GHQ`s version. “He was responsible for planting the seeds of intrigue on the Kargil issue in Sharif`s mind,“ according to a reliable official source. In his rash drive to convince Sharif that Musharraf`s removal as the COAS would ease tension with the Army, Ziauddin is believed to have also encouraged the former Intelligence Bureau chief Colonel (retd) Iqbal Niazi, to invent a variety of Army-backed threatening scenarios for Sharif, who apparently had an unlimited appetite for stories that painted a highly negative picture of Musharraf and the corps commanders considered close to the COAS. Khawaja Ziauddin`s desperation to please Nawaz Sharif became evident on the first day of his appointment as the ISI chief when he readily confirmed a police-doctored version about the culprits allegedly involved in the ghastly murder of Hakim Mohammad Said. On Ziauddin`s report, submitted without any independent verification, Sharif got an excuse to knock out the democratic set-up in Sindh, an act that later emerged as part of a well-engineered plot to make way for the installation of an exclusive PML-run unelected administration in Sindh. An independent Army probe later discovered that the Sindh Police`s version of the Hakim Said case, with a stamp of ISI confirmation from Gen. Ziauddin, was nothing but “a pack of lies.“ Neither Sharif nor Ziauddin, however, ever acknowledged the blunder.

    In another desperate attempt to please the former prime minister, Ziauddin ordered the illegal detention of Najam Sethi, the editor Friday Times, for more than two weeks. Despite the Army`s blunt refusal to initiate sedition or treason charges against Sethi, Ziauddin obliged Sharif and Saifur Rahman by keeping Sethi locked up for about 20 days. Sethi had been handed to Ziauddin`s ISI after being abducted by IB goons from his Lahore residence. Sources said Ziauddin agreed to hold Sethi in illegal detention in response to a single phone call from Saifur Rahman, who later also made Sharif speak to him on the subject. Reliable sources said that Ziauddin was also behind severe criticism of the Kargil crisis by at least two corps commanders, who later met Sharif in Ziauddin`s presence. These meetings were never reported to the COAS, who later reacted by removing both corps commanders from their posts. For Sharif, sources said, Ziauddin`s mission was to divide the corps commanders on ethnic and professional lines and to create an anti-Musharraf lobby amongst the corps commanders. “Since his appointment as the DG ISI, Ziauddin was playing a dangerous game that pitched his boss against the Army,“ observed a senior official. “His operation ultimately turned out to be hara kari (suicide).“

  4. How Shameless & Low Jang Group/GEO TV is?

  5. Maj Gen (R) Naseerullah Khan Babar “Exposed” General (R) Mirza Aslam Beg. Kamran Khan [The Correspondent of The News International/Washington Post] was the one who met with Murtaza in Damascus (Syria) [at the behest of Brigadier (r) Imtiaz] several times and insist him to come back to Pakistan, Kamran used to fly to Syria every month at that time.

  6. Ansar Abbasi again “quotes” Wiki Leaks which he himself never believed:)

  7. Michael Mullen’s “RANT” & Some History!

  8. Instead of admitting their mistake, they are playing as victims, claiming that “The Jang Group emphasises that in dealing with these stories, complete professionalism was used, all norms of ethics were observed, all versions were prominently printed and frivolous details which had been circulating for days and weeks were ignored. There was absolutely no malice and ill-intention but to bring out the truth about the whole issue which concerned a duly elected President of Pakistan.” The Jang Group further claims that publishing the hoax was in great public interest “It may not be out of place to mention that public office holders, elected politicians and celebrities continue to remain a subject of great public interest.” The Jang Group then chooses to re-publish the same hoax and crappy reporting as an evidence of its high professional and ethical standards. Shame!

  9. […] the same newspaper only two months ago published an article by the same former CIA official without mentioning his name. In this article of Bruce Riedel’s own words, the American writes […]

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