Jang Group’s Double Standard on Security

Jan 24th, 2012 | By | Category: Jang, The News

The News (Jang Group)When The News (Jang Group) published an editorial on 6th January questioning Husain Haqqani for claiming that he was concerned about his security without providing some concrete proof of threats, we noted that creating this arbitrary standard of proof of threats was insulting to the courageous men and women of the press who every day put their lives at risk to investigate and report news that is uncomfortable for certain powerful quarters, especially when their own newspapers had carried reports terming him as a traitor.

Imagine our disappointment, then, when we opened today’s edition of The News only to find another editorial, this time giving utmost sympathy to the claims of Mansoor Ijaz about his own security concerns in what appears to be a blatant double-standard.

This is what The News said about Husain Haqqani:

There has been no fulminating cleric calling for Haqqani’s demise, nor protests or rallies against his alleged treachery. Today Haqqani remains in the PM house, and one might reasonably wonder why there and not some other place – his own home for instance, suitably guarded against intrusion or attack. But that is another unknown, alongside all the other unknowns of this curious affair. We wish no ill to Mr Haqqani, but might attach greater credence to his claims of insecurity were he able to support them with something a little less ephemeral than euphemistic references to ‘powerful quarters’. In short, facts please. Or is that just too much to ask?

This is what The News said about Mansoor Ijaz:

Can anyone be blamed, then, for accusing the government of trying to intimidate Ijaz into staying away from Pakistan and standing in the way of the memo investigation reaching its logical end? It boggles the mind why the government would want to lose its already tenuous moral ground by shirking from its primary responsibility of witness protection. If the judicial commission fails to complete its work, the assumption of Husain Haqqani’s guilt and the complicity of top government leaders will be recorded in historical memory. An easier way out has already been suggested by Haqqani’s lawyers when they asked the commission to arrange testimony of their witnesses through video conferences. If this can be done for one side, why not for the other? The government must exhibit that it is committed to protecting Ijaz for the sake of the truth, and make every effort to get him to come to Pakistan or get his testimony for both the judicial and parliamentary commissions. On his part, Ijaz also needs to exhibit more faith in the judicial process to which he says he is ready to surrender the truth.

According to The News, Husain Haqqani is crying crocodile tears while he is placed on the ECL and sitting behind armed guards at PM’s house, but Mansoor Ijaz has an understandable complaint while he enjoys the comfort of his home in South France and is able to travel freely. We are not questioning whether Mansoor Ijaz has received any threats, but why are his claims more believable to The News than Husain Haqqani? Is it because The News wants to create different impressions about the two people? Or is The News simply unaware of their obvious double-standard?

This is the worst sort of double-standard because it so obviously takes sides in a case that is presently sub judice. Rather than acting like the media team for one side or the other, Jang Group would be appreciated to inform readers without bias. In short, facts please. Or is that just too much to ask?

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