Posts Tagged ‘mischaracterization’

The Nation misrepresents Bilawal’s statements

Wednesday, April 11th, 2012

The Nation (Nawa-e-Waqt Group)An editorial in The Nation on Wednesday misrepresents the statements of Chairman Pakistan People’s Party Bilawal Bhutto Zardari as a call for unilateral disarmament of Pakistan particularly with regards to the nuclear assets. The Nation characterised Bilawal as ‘naive’ and ‘idealism’ said that his statement ‘overlooks some of the fundamental realities but also reinforces his stature as a beginner in the field of politics’. The newspaper went on to offer a lesson to the PPP Chairman saying,

…it is only in utopia, where one can live without weapons and expect enemies not to attack. We have fought three conventional wars with India because of its belligerence, that has its roots in its forcible and illegal occupation of Kashmir immediately after partition. Talking of nuclear weapons, he must not forget that it is Pakistan’s nuclear deterrent that has prevented India from taking it on. Our nuclear capability has minimised the likelihood of a war, and though ironic as it might seem, they are agents of peace nevertheless. There are instances when India avoided open confrontation owing to the fear that Pakistan would hit back with full force. Equally important is the fact that the nuclear arms race was triggered by India’s detonations in 1974 that forced Pakistan to follow suit. New Delhi has also been spending a lot on other lethal weapons as part and parcel of its strategic plans against Pakistan. Our survival lies in keeping ourselves strong enough to successfully foil India’s machinations.

But let us look at what Bilawal actually said:

Bilawal Bhutto Zardari Tweets

Unlike the way it was characterised by The Nation, Bilawal did not recommend a one-sided peace. Neither did he recommend Pakistan disarm or stop spending on the national defence. Actually, he expressed disappointment that because of ongoing tensions, Pakistan and India both spend such large sums on weapons at the expense of education, healthcare and trade, and a desire for both nations to resolve outstanding issues so that more money could be used to improve the lives of the common people.

Actually, The Nation missed the distinct echo of similar principles of his mother Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto who said in her last speech on 27th December 2007:

We have a firm conviction in the thinking that strong army lone does not make countries strong, the real strength of a country lies in the empowerment, development and well being of its people…You may have nuclear power or missile technology but if you are poor and deprived of basic necessities, non-one can ensure the strength of the any government or the people to make that the country’s defence is secured.

Nowhere does Bilawal suggest, as The Nation implies, that Pakistan should not have a strong national defence including a nuclear deterrent. Rather, he merely expresses that weapons alone cannot provide a quality of life to the citizens. The Nation concludes its editorial saying ‘We want Bilawal to be our ambassador in that worthy cause [of resolving tension with India], not just in recommending a one-sided peace’. Is appears their prayer is answered.

Media Misreports Proposed Changes to American Aid

Saturday, June 18th, 2011

Recent reports of possible cuts to American aid have been in the headlines this week after a committee in the American Congress proposed some budget changes that affect US aid policy. As these proposed changes directly affect aid to Pakistan, this is a legitimate news story. But if we examine the way media groups are reporting the story, it appears that there may be some problems.

An American political newspaper described the proposed changes as a request for greater transparency and accountability in how the Congress is spending American tax payer’s money.

Legislative language withholds three-quarters of the funds until the Defense and State Department come up with a report to Congress on how the money is being used and what metrics are being used to measure progress by Pakistan in rooting out terrorist and Taliban elements inside its borders.

These may be simply accounting details intended to prevent corruption, but this is not how the proposed changes to American aid are being characterised by the media.

On Friday, Dawn misreported proposed changes to American aid in an article titled, ‘Obama to address Pakistan’s concerns’. The Dawn article includes the following claim:

Earlier this week, lawmakers proposed linking 75 per cent of US assistance to Pakistan to its performance in the war against terror.

Dawn is not the only media group to sensationalise the story by characterising it as a punishment or another example of the ‘do more’ mantra. On Thursday, Dunya reported that ‘US Congress seeks to axe Pakistan’s aid by 75%’.

The US Congress Appropriations committee recommended a 75 percent reduction in the US aid to Pakistan.

This claim is incorrect. The American Congressmen did not simply recommend reduction in US aid to Pakistan, but asked only for greater accountability and transparency in how the money is spent. If the money is not being spent properly, then it would not be granted. Looked at this way, the proposal is an anti-corruption measure in the US Congress.

To its credit, The News (Jang Group) reported the story more accurately:

The panel approved the $649 billion in defense spending bill on a voice vote and forwarded it to the full House for consideration, expected later this month. The Senate is still working on its version of the bill. The two houses must pass the same bill before sending it to Obama for his signature.

However it should be noted that The News report was actually taken directly from a report by Reuters without giving attribution. Additionally it should also be noted that The News changed the headline from the original Reuters piece:

‘House panel backs $649 billion in defense spending’

To a different headline that gives a story about the American political process and accountability a different meaning:

House panel puts bar on US aid to Pakistan

The report published by The News may be the most accurate of the stories quoted here, but it should be asked why did Jang Group choose to change the original headline?

Many media groups are reporting that American aid is being ‘barred’ or ‘cut’ when careful examination of the facts reveals that the American Congress appears to be including additional accountability and transparency measures that affect the US White House, not Pakistan. This is an important difference that should be clarified for the people. Unfortunately, the reporting appearing in the media is not clarifying the issue, it is confusing it.

The Nation Mischaracterises, Misquotes Ambassador’s Speech at NDU

Thursday, May 26th, 2011

The Nation logoOn 18 May, Pakistan’s Ambassador to US Husain Haqqani arrived at National Defence University Islamabad to speak to students about foreign policy and Pak-US relations. A few days later, on 21 May, The Nation published an article titled ‘NDU audiences response surprises Haqqani’. This article, based on “sources privy to this lecture” described the Ambassador’s speech as following:

According to them, during the questions and answers session in post lecture time, Ambassador Haqqani stopped to ask the audience, “How many of you think that India is Pakistan’s enemy number one?” Reportedly, less than half of the audience raised hands in response. The insiders quote Ambassador Haqqani as rephrasing this question with slight replacements. “How many of you think that Pakistan’s enemy number one comes from within?” This time, some of the audience raised hands.

Perhaps disappointed with these ‘unsatisfactory’ answers, the ‘curious’ envoy, made a hat-trick of his queries by repeating the same question in the same tone with a final ‘modification’. “How many of you think that the US is Pakistan’s enemy number one?” he asked.

The ambassador was shell-shocked to see the ‘overwhelming’ response coming from the audiences in a reflection of anti-US sentiment.

Majority of the audiences, this time, raised hands in response to what Haqqani has asked. Stunned for a few moments, the speechless envoy than gathered his nerve to make this brief utterance. “Then I’m afraid you have lost already. The US will do whatever it wants to and there’s nothing you can do about it,” he said to wind up the lecture.

Pakistan Media Watch has obtained video footage of the lecture from National Defence University Islamabad that proves this report is false and possibly defamatory.

After viewing the video of the lecture, it is clear that The Nation report is a mischaracteristion not only of the Ambassador’s question his reaction to the response also, but also misquotes his statement following the audience answer.

Ambassador Haqqani never said, “The US will do whatever it wants to and there’s nothing you can do about it”. Rather he said clearly that “If [the biggest threat to Pakistan’s security] really comes from the United States then we’ve already lost, Ladies and Gentlemen, because you can’t beat the United States in a military confrontation and that is the reality which we have to accept whatever our emotions. Because, let us be honest, we do not have the means to take on the one military power in the world that spends more on defense technology than the next 20 nations in the world. So that is where I think we sometimes end up having what I call ’emotional discussion’. I see it on Pakistani television all the time”.

The Ambassador then went on to continue speaking for the next 7 or 8 more minutes about the need to embrace a logical, reality based foreign policy to advance Pakistan’s interests and to focus on education and growing Pakistan’s economy as a realistic way to secure Pakistan’s interests for the future. After continuing his speech for this time, he then turned over the microphone and took questions from the audience as part of a longer discussion.

Nowhere in the video does one see a “shell-shocked” or “speechless” Ambassador. Also, he does not wind up his lecture following this question. Rather, the video clearly shows that the exchange was part of a broader, friendly discussion with NDU students about how foreign policy and specifically Pak-US relations should be considered with logic and reason and not emotions driving the debate.

Now that the facts are public, will The Nation publish a correction?


Dear reader @shahpak78 correctly notes that the report by The Nation may have violated NDU’s non-attribution policy which is stated:

“Presentations by guest speakers, seminar leaders, and panelists constitute an important part of University curricula. So that these guests, as well as faculty and other University officials, may speak candidly, the University offers its assurance that their presentations at the Colleges, or before other NDU-sponsored audiences, will be held in strict confidence. This assurance derives from a policy of non-attribution that is morally binding on all who attend: without the express permission of the speaker, nothing he or she says will be attributed to that speaker directly or indirectly in the presence of anyone who was not authorized to attend the lecture or presentation.”

First Impressions

Friday, December 17th, 2010

Front page headlines are a first impression of the news of the day. Newspapers consider them carefully because it is well known that the front page headline will colour the way we see the world events. Look at the front page of The News today. The headline reads, “Obama asks Pak Army to do more”.

The News, 17 December 2010

Here’s the first paragraph of the article, which sets the tone for the story:

As a new US policy review on Thursday found al-Qaeda in Pakistan weaker than ever, US President Barack Obama, acknowledged progress, though slow, in defeating al-Qaeda and Taliban in the border region of Afghanistan. However, he asked Pakistan, without mincing words, to do more militarily in the tribal areas.

Between this and the menacing photograph used (a photo that is not even from the speech) clearly leaves the public with the impression that an angry Barack Obama is bullying Pakistan’s military.

And The News is not the only media group to define Obama’s speech in this way. Actually Dawn‘s front page article is quite similar, even going so far as to define the American president’s speech as “adopting a classic carrot-and-stick combination”.

Dawn, 17 December 2010

Actually, Obama never uses the words ‘do more’ which raises the question is it a mantra for American officials, or for a political group that wants the public to believe that US is bullying Pakistan.

And no carrots and sticks were discussed either. In fact, reading the transcript of Obama’s speech gives a much different perspective than either headline. Here is what American President Barack Obama actually said about Pakistan:

Finally, we will continue to focus on our relationship with Pakistan. Increasingly, the Pakistani government recognizes that terrorist networks in its border regions are a threat to all our countries, especially Pakistan. We’ve welcomed major Pakistani offensives in the tribal regions. We will continue to help strengthen Pakistanis’ capacity to root out terrorists. Nevertheless, progress has not come fast enough. So we will continue to insist to Pakistani leaders that terrorist safe havens within their borders must be dealt with.

At the same time, we need to support the economic and political development that is critical to Pakistan’s future. As part of our strategic dialogue with Pakistan, we will work to deepen trust and cooperation. We’ll speed up our investment in civilian institutions and projects that improve the lives of Pakistanis. We’ll intensify our efforts to encourage closer cooperation between Pakistan and Afghanistan.

And, next year, I look forward to an exchange of visits, including my visit to Pakistan, because the United States is committed to an enduring partnership that helps deliver improved security, development, and justice for the Pakistani people.

This is a far different person speaking than the angry bully that is portrayed on the front page of The News. Actually, the rest of Sami Abraham’s article portrays a very different event, one much more like the impression one gets from reading the actual transcripts. President Obama even said that he is looking forward to visiting Pakistan and is committed to improved security and justice for the Pakistani people. So why the portrait of a bully Obama?

Sadly, this is not the first time that headlines have presented asensational and misleading first impression. Perhaps this is an example of what Cyril Almeida calls, “massaging public opinion”.

The fake WikiLeaks cables give the first public hint about how opinion is being shaped in this country right now. Unpatriotic, secular, godless liberals may sniff about such naked manipulation, but the smart money is on a population raised on a diet of conspiracy and paranoia swallowing it as yet more evidence of external plots against the country.

It is no secret that a particular political constituency considers “do more” to be the greatest insult of all time. And it is also no secret that this is a very vocal group who would like to see the Army disengage from cooperation with the Americans. But these are political opinions and belong on the opinion page, not front page headlines. Mischaracterizing the speech of a foreign leader on the front page headline is beneath the professionalism of our media.

It is also possible that these newspapers know that such headlines will simply sell better. Certainly the political tendencies of Dawn‘s editors are not the same as The Nation (which, it should be recognized, had the most objective headline of the three!). But it is much more profitable to have a dramatic front page story than a report that relations are respectful and improving. Whether headlines are being written to promote a political agenda or to simply sell more newspapers, however, the results are the same.

Many people don’t read past the headlines of a newspaper. It is the first thing that jumps at you when walk by a newspaper stand, and thus it is the image the sticks in your memory. Even if you read the entire article, your first impression will still be coloured by the headline and opening paragraph that characterizes the story. So first impressions are lasting – but what if they are wrong? In the case of media impressions, the result is we are left with a lastingly misinformed public.

The Intransigent Talat Hussain

Saturday, December 4th, 2010

Syed Talat HussainTalat Hussain, a man who has (or should I say had) a reputation for being at least bearable among the insufferable lot of TV anchors, has done it again. The anchor, on his struggling-for-rating program “News Night with Talat” recently attacked Husain Haqqani, ambassador of Pakistan to US questioning the ambassador’s loyalty and motives.

He took a couple of Haqqanis quotations out of context from Bob Woodward’s book “Obamas Wars” and directly attacked Haqqani saying that these types of comments should make us reconsider the type of people representing us. Talat Hussain has picked up two things that Woodward has quoted the Ambassador as saying in the context of Pakistan and US relations; one where the Ambassador talks about “carpet merchants” and the other where the Ambassador talks about the need to “woo a woman” and importance of giving an engagement ring.

The first quote which Talat talks about out of context as directly taken from Woodward’s book, is as follows:

He [Haqqani] also warned that the Pakistanis would always ask for the moon as a starting point in negotiations. He compared it to the salesmanship of rug merchants. “The guy starts at 10,000 and you settle for 1,200″ Haqqani told the Obama team. “So be reasonable, but never let the guy walk out of the shop without a sale.”

It is important to mention here that ambassador Haqqani was talking about how people and nations negotiate. Each side always starts with a long list of issues and then as you keep discussing and negotiating you come down to the bare essentials. And what is important, as the Ambassador emphasizes, is that you need to know what it is that you want. One also needs to make sure that you never let the negotiations break down so much that you have to let go of the one or two absolutely essential items that you need out of the negotiation.

If you’ve ever been on the streets of Saddar where rug merchants are trying to sell their merchandise, you can see that they start their sales pitch from an outrageous price and come down to a much more reasonable one. That is what the norm traditionally is for selling rugs. It is a noble and respectable profession that helps people provide for food and shelter. Talat Hussain was not only taking Haqqani’s words out of context here but was also belittling rug merchants by implying that selling rugs was beneath any respectable individual and that using such an example is shameful.

The second quotation that Mr. Talat Hussain talks about clearly out of context, from Woodward’s book where the ambassador talks about “wooing a woman” is:

Pakistan’s Ambassador to Washington Husain Haqqani, a key go-between, tried several times to explain to the Obama administration how to court Pakistani leaders, comparing the dynamic to “a man who is trying to woo a woman.” “We all know what he wants from her. Right?” Haqqani said in a meeting with Jones, Deputy National Security Advisor Tom Donilon and the NSC’s Gen. Doug Lute. “But she has other ideas. She wants to be taken to the theater. She wants that nice new bottle of perfume,” Haqqani told them. “If you get down on one knee and give the ring, that’s the big prize. And boy, you know, it works.” Haqqani said the “ring” was official U.S. recognition of Pakistan’s nuclear program as legitimate.

It’s actually quite clear that the ambassador was explaining Pakistan’s complaint against US and using an example Americans can understand. Did you notice how Talat partially explained the ambassador’s statement and left out the part about presenting of the “ring” to the woman being wooed and the part where Husain Haqqani says that the ring represents America’s public acceptance of Pakistan’s nuclear status? The ambassador was defending Pakistan’s nuclear program and trying to help Americans understand how important it is for Pakistan’s security and existence and that Americans need to accept it and learn to live with it. Listening to Talat Hussain, though, a viewer would come away with a different impression than the truth.

Talat Hussain conveniently pulled out the complete opposite meaning of what the ambassador was trying to say and started implying that Pakistan is a woman and US is a man, bringing forth his sexist nature, trying to rev up his listeners emotions without real reason.

On Hillary Clinton’s latest visit to Pakistan, our ill-informed anchor who was working for Aaj TV at the time, wanted to embarrass Hillary by proving that she was wrong and U.S did not give Pakistan enough money compared to Kyrgyzstan. He kept insisting that U.S. was paying Kyrgyzstan $640 million as rent for a military base in that country. Hillary corrected the self-righteous anchor but Talat Hussain insisted he was correct. Hillary Clinton remained polite and did not pursue the whole debate further but as it turns out, Talat was incorrect and had little regard for facts.

It is also important to point out that not too long ago Talat Hussain in his column in the Urdu daily Express News targeted the famous Hollywood actress Angelina Jolie in his shameful effort to attack the present civilian government of Pakistan. He caused an uproar among most of those people who read it not because of the just the message he was trying to get across, but in how he viciously maligned Angelina Jolie’s character to build his case. His article was condemned by majority of his readers and what he actually ended up doing was show to the public his own bigotry, his sexist attitude and his own racism (he actually called Jolie’s children as “rang barangay yateem bachay” or multi-colored orphan kids). He also showed how some hypocrites in the media write in one style for the Urdu-reading public and maintain quite a different persona for the English readership.

Playing the Machismo card to rouse the emotions of viewers is the strategy of drama serials, not series news programmes. And playing fast and loose with the statements of government officials is a style of ‘hit-and-run journalism’ that may score a short-term boost in ratings but does long-term damage to national security by giving other nations the impression that we do not even respect our own representatives so why should they. All of this together suggests a disturbing trend in Talat Hussain’s reporting – a willingness to sacrifice the truth for some cheap ratings.

Ahmad Noorani Mischaracterizes Zardari Statements, Contradicts Own Newspaper

Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010
Ahmad Noorani, journalist or political operative?

Ahmad Noorani, journalist or political operative?

Ahmad Noorani writes a ‘top story’ in The News today that is an example of yellow journalism at its worst. The article, “President confuses PPP Jialas and the nation“, is a political ‘hit job’ and not a serious piece of journalism. Moreover, the author’s argument contradicts recent reports found in his own newspaper.

Ahmed claims that the president does not want to locate and try the killers of Benazir Bhutto. This is a blatant mischaracterization of the president’s remarks in an effort to score political points.

Despite making this claim about the president’s statements, Noorani does not actually provide quotes that back up his claims. Perhaps that is because the actual statements of the president are not as Ahmad Noorani tries to twist them.

Actually, the president has repeatedly said the same thing – that his government will not practise revenge, but will respect the due process of proper law and order. This is even reported in The News on 22 April 2010:

“We do not believe in the politics of revenge. The law will take its own course and the people who are responsible for the martyrdom of Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto will be brought to justice, not to revenge,” the president said while addressing PPP workers, members of the bar and the People’s Lawyer Forum from Bahawalpur, Multan and DG Khan divisions here at the Ashraf Sugar Mills.

This is clearly a call for a proper investigation and trial of the killers of Benazir Bhutto, not, as Ahmad Noorani falsely characterizes it, a call to abandon the investigation. Or does Ahmad Noorani believe that there should be simply a revenge killing of some scapegoat with no due process?

Because President Zardari’s statements about the ongoing investigation and forthcoming trials for Benazir Bhutto’s murderers have been quite clear, it is hard not to come to the conclusion that Ahmad Noorani is not engaging in journalism, but is using his position at The News to engage in a political ‘character assassination’ of the president.

It turns out, Mr Noorani, a protege of long-time Zardari critic Mr Ansar Abbasi, is no stranger to political hit jobs. According to research conducted by blogger Mohtasib, in April 2000,

In April 2000, Bahawalpur’s Civil Lines Police registered a case against AhmedNoorani for violating section 144 CrPC, which was imposed to refrain miscreants from provoking sectarian sentiments in the area known as a hotbed of sectarian militancy.Noorani had plastered the walls of Islamia University of Bahawalpur with posters carrying objectionable slogans against some sects (see the police report).

Nor is this the first time that Ahmad Noorani has used his position at The News to write some political propaganda under the cover of journalism. Mr Yousuf Nazar wrote about Ahmad Noorani’s misleading reporting about the 18th Amendment in April of this year.

This raises the question of whether or not Ahmad Noorani is a reporter or a political operative. Judging by this article, the answer does not look good.

What did Hillary Clinton and Eric Holder really say?

Wednesday, May 12th, 2010

American Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Attorney General Eric Holder

Yesterday, The Nation suggested the entire Faisal Shahzad case is a ‘set up’ to trap Pakistan, and that we may be facing an ‘imminent attack’ by the Americans. The evidence they present are some statements by American Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and American Attorney General Eric Holder. Both statements, which were made during TV interviews, have been used by commentators to suggest that there are threats from the US against Pakistan. The Nation, unsurprisingly, is the most hysterical. But what did these American officials actually say?

Here is what The Nation wrote in its editorial published yesterday, “US attack imminent?”

FIRST it was Hillary Clinton issuing a threat to Pakistan; this has been followed by an even more ominous threat to Pakistan from the US Attorney General Eric Holder. He stated that if Pakistan failed to “take appropriate action” against the Taliban, the US will. If the message is still unclear to anyone in Pakistan, this latest threat should leave absolutely no room for any doubt that the US now intends to target Pakistan far beyond the FATA region and certainly with more than just drones.

This is a serious claim! The Nation is accusing the American Secretary of State and Attorney General of threatening Pakistan with attack. Is this true?

Let’s look first at the entire conversation between US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and the interviewer on the CBS News programme ’60 Minutes':

“With the bomb in Times Square, I wonder what your message is to the Pakistani government?” Pelley asked.

“It’s very clear. This is a threat that we share, we have a common enemy. There is no time to waste in going after that common enemy as hard and fast as we can and we cannot tolerate having people encouraged, directed, trained and sent from Pakistan to attack us,” she replied.

This is important. Hillary Clinton recognized that the TTP is a common enemy of Pakistan and US. She is not saying that there is some tension between the two states, she is saying that we must work together.

Actually, Hillary Clinton gave some praise to Pakistan for its efforts.

“But we’re not getting that cooperation,” Pelley remarked.

“Well, we are,” Clinton replied.

“The question is why is this administration not pressuring Pakistan to give up Osama bin Laden [or] his deputy Ayman al Zawahiri…,” Pelley asked.

“I have to stand up for the efforts the Pakistani government is taking. They have done a very significant move toward going after the terrorists within their own country,” Clinton replied.

This is far different from how the interview is being presented, isn’t it? Hillary Clinton actually seems very full of praise for Pakistan.

But let’s get to the moment of truth and read the full quote about ‘severe consequences':

“Even in light of the Times Square bomber, you are comfortable with the cooperation you are getting from the Pakistani government?” Pelley asked.

“Well, now, I didn’t say that. I’ve said we’ve gotten more cooperation and it’s been a real sea change in the commitment we’ve seen from the Pakistani government. We want more; we expect more. We’ve made it very clear that, if, heaven forbid, that an attack like this, if we can trace back to Pakistan, were to have been successful, there would be very severe consequences,” Clinton said.

Asked what she meant exactly, Clinton said, “I think I’ll let that speak for itself.”

This is very different from how the statement has been presented – especially by The Nation. Actually, Hillary Clinton again gives a lot of praise. As for her words that have so upset The Nation, she never says anything about an attack on Pakistan by the Americans. Taking her whole statement in context, surely it seems more likely that the threat is against Taliban and its sympathizers. Perhaps this is what makes The Nation so worried?

As for Mr. Eric Holder’s statement, let us look at his actual words in full context. Asked about Hillary Clinton’s statement, Mr. Holder replied:

Well, in connectino with the Shahzad investigation, they have been, I think, extremely aggressive. They’ve been cooperative with us. And I think we have been satisfied with the work that they have done. We want to make sure that that kind of cooperation continues. To the extent that it does not, we will, as Secretary Clinton indicated, take the appropriate steps. But as of now, with regard to Shahzad, I think we’re satisfied with the level of cooperation we have received.

This should be shocking to anyone who has not read the full statement before. The Nation and any other journalist who is only taking three words from a statement an misrepresenting them is misleading his readers very badly. This is unprofessional and unethical and should be severely reprimanded.

Contrary to the claims of these journalists, Mr. Eric Holder actually praised Pakistan’s efforts. Actually, if you watch the remainder of the interview, he says

The vast majority of people who go to Pakistan and come from Pakistan to the United States are well-intentioned; they have relatives; they have cultural ties to both countries.

Let’s also look at what other American officials are saying. Richard Holbrooke – who is a close confidant of Hillary Clinton – assured that there will be no move to block economic or military aid

The assurance came from Mrs Clinton’s close confidant, US Special Representative Richard Holbrooke. Her remarks in no way indicated any impact on the flow of US economic or military aid to Pakistan, he told a briefing in Washington.

“As for Secretary Clinton’s interview on (CBS channel’s) 60 Minutes (programme), I think that perhaps it was not fully understood for what she was saying by some people who didn’t see the full text or didn’t appreciate what she was saying,” he said.

American Defense Secretary Robert Gates has praised our military and said that “Pakistanis are in the driver’s seat.”

Obviously, there are some media personalities who are sympathetic to the Taliban and are trying to make some problems between Pakistan and the US by the devious practice of misquoting and misrepresenting the words of officials. The Nation in particular has been absolutely irresponsible and unprofessional by mischaracterizing statements in attempt to scare the people and make some false claims of threats.

Far from putting pressure or making any threats against Pakistan, both Hillary Clinton and Eric Holder praised both the Pakistani military also and also the Pakistani government and also the Pakistani people! The way that The Nation presents their statements is dishonest. The editors should be ashamed of themselves.

The Nation fails to do homework for latest editorial

Thursday, January 7th, 2010


Stratfor research does not support The Nation's claims

Stratfor research does not support The Nation's claims


Only two days after their failed attempt to blame the government for problems at the Oil & Gas Development Company (OGDCL), The Nation’s editorial writers published a new hyper-dramatic editorial declaring that the US is targeting Pakistan. After reviewing the evidence used by The Nation as well as actually reading the news this morning, it has become obvious that The Nation failed once again to do their homework before they published a sensational – and misinformed – editorial.