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 Mansoor Ijaz column
 in Financial Times
Memo Commission

Nawaz demands commission on memo controversy

LAHORE: PML-N chief Mian Nawaz Sharif has demanded formation a commission on the letter allegedly sent to Mike Mullen, Geo News reported.

Talking to media men here, Nawaz Sharif said there would be no compromise on the sovereignty and integrity of the country.

He said PML-N would not support any unconstitutional and undemocratic step.

Explanation over Mullen memo sought from Haqqani: PM

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani said Pakistan's ambassador to the US Husain Haqqani has been asked to explain the Mansoor Ijaz memo, Geo News reported. 

PM Gilani ruled out any unconstitutional change in the country saying, 'only people will bring change in 2013 through elections'.

Responding to various point of orders of Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) lawmakers regarding memorandum addressed to a US General, the prime minister said that he had already issued a statement about it on the floor of the Parliament in response to a point of order raised by Leader of the Opposition in the House.

The prime minister said that he had already summoned Pakistan's Ambassador to the US to give an explanation in this regard. "Let us wait for Ambassador's explanation," he said.

He said that the government always protected national institutions including the ISI in accordance with country's constitution.

Geo News receives Mullen's secret memo

WASHINGTON: Geo News has received the controversial memo that was allegedly given by Mansoor Ijaz, an American citizen of Pakistani origin, to Admiral Mike Mullen who was the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff at the time.

Mansoor Ijaz has claimed that the memo was handed over to him by the Pakistan Ambassador and was asked to deliver to the US president containing message from the Pakistan government. The memo was sent to Adm Mike Millen on May10.

According to the memo, a commission will be formed to probe the presence of Osama bin Laden in Abbottabad as civil government is under army's pressure.

It has been demanded in the memo that Adm Mike Mullen should convey a strict message to the army leadership.

"Request your direct intervention in conveying a strong, urgent and direct message to Gen Kayani that delivers Washington's demand for him and Gen Pasha to end their brinkmanship aimed at bringing down the civilian apparatus." 

It is important to note that Adm Mike Mullen has confirmed the receiving of the memo on Thursday.

Following is the complete text of memo:


During the past 72 hours since a meeting was held between the president, the prime minister and the chief of army staff, there has seen a significant deterioration in Pakistan's political atmosphere. Increasingly desperate efforts by the various agencies and factions within the government to find a home - ISI and/or Army, or the civilian government - for assigning blame over the UBL raid now dominate the tug of war between military and civilian sectors. Subsequent tit-for-tat reactions, including outing of the CIA station chief's name in Islamabad by ISI officials, demonstrates a dangerous devolution of the ground situation in Islamabad where no central control appears to be in place.

Civilians cannot withstand much more of the hard pressure being delivered from the Army to succumb to wholesale changes. If civilians are forced from power, Pakistan becomes a sanctuary for UBL's legacy and potentially the platform for far more rapid spread of al Qaeda's brand of fanaticism and terror. A unique window of opportunity exists for the civilians to gain the upper hand over army and intelligence directorates due to their complicity in the UBL matter.

Request your direct intervention in conveying a strong, urgent and direct message to Gen Kayani that delivers Washington's demand for him and Gen Pasha to end their brinkmanship aimed at bringing down the civilian apparatus - that this is a 1971 moment in Pakistan's history. Should you be willing to do so, Washington's political/military backing would result in a revamp of the civilian government that, while weak at the top echelon in terms of strategic direction and implementation (even though mandated by domestic political forces), in a wholesale manner replaces the national security adviser and other national security officials with trusted advisers that include ex-military and civilian leaders favorably viewed by Washington, each of whom have long and historical ties to the US military, political and intelligence communities. Names will be provided to you in a face-to-face meeting with the person delivering this message.

In the event Washington's direct intervention behind the scenes can be secured through your personal communication with Kayani (he will likely listen only to you at this moment) to stand down the Pakistani military-intelligence establishment, the new national security team is prepared, with full backing of the civilian apparatus, to do the following:

1. President of Pakistan will order an independent inquiry into the allegations that Pakistan harbored and offered assistance to UBL and other senior Qaeda operatives. The White House can suggest names of independent investigators to populate the panel, along the lines of the bipartisan 9-11 Commission, for example.

2. The inquiry will be accountable and independent, and result in findings of tangible value to the US government and the American people that identify with exacting detail those elements responsible for harboring and aiding UBL inside and close to the inner ring of influence in Pakistan's Government (civilian, intelligence directorates and military). It is certain that the UBL Commission will result in immediate termination of active service officers in the appropriate government offices and agencies found responsible for complicity in assisting UBL.

3. The new national security team will implement a policy of either handing over those left in the leadership of Al Qaeda or other affiliated terrorist groups who are still on Pakistani soil, including Ayman Al Zawahiri, Mullah Omar and Sirajuddin Haqqani, or giving US military forces a "green light" to conduct the necessary operations to capture or kill them on Pakistani soil. This "carte blanche" guarantee is not without political risks, but should demonstrate the new group's commitment to rooting out bad elements on our soil. This commitment has the backing of the top echelon on the civilian side of our house, and we will insure necessary collateral support.

4. One of the great fears of the military-intelligence establishment is that with your stealth capabilities to enter and exit Pakistani airspace at will, Pakistan's nuclear assets are now legitimate targets. The new national security team is prepared, with full backing of the Pakistani government - initially civilian but eventually all three power centers - to develop an acceptable framework of discipline for the nuclear program. This effort was begun under the previous military regime, with acceptable results. We are prepared to reactivate those ideas and build on them in a way that brings Pakistan's nuclear assets under a more verifiable, transparent regime.

5. The new national security team will eliminate Section S of the ISI charged with maintaining relations to the Taliban, Haqqani network, etc. This will dramatically improve relations with Afghanistan.

6. We are prepared to cooperate fully under the new national security team's guidance with the Indian government on bringing all perpetrators of Pakistani origin to account for the 2008 Mumbai attacks, whether outside government or inside any part of the government, including its intelligence agencies. This includes handing over those against whom sufficient evidence exists of guilt to the Indian security services.

Pakistan faces a decision point of unprecedented importance. We, who believe in democratic governance and building a much better structural relationship in the region with India AND Afghanistan, seek US assistance to help us pigeon-hole the forces lined up against your interests and ours, including containment of certain elements inside our country that require appropriate re-sets and re-tasking in terms of direction and extent of responsibility after the UBL affair.

We submit this memorandum for your consideration collectively as the members of the new national security team who will be inducted by the President of Pakistan with your support in this undertaking.

Mansoor says Mullen wanted Zardari's clearance of memo

By our correspondent

LONDON: US businessman Mansoor Ijaz who broke all hell in the world media by releasing the evidence of his secret Memo to Admiral Mike Mullen said on Friday Mullen insisted on having the ambassador's offers put in writing because the US government had been repeatedly deceived by Pakistan's verbal offers of action in the recent past.

"He also insisted that I obtain the ambassador's assurance that President Zardari had approved the offers contained in the memorandum. I did exactly those two things," he told The News.

Speaking after Admiral Mullen confirmed the Memo, Mansoor said at 09:06:16 hours, "I spoke to Amb Haqqani at his London hotel (Park Lane Intercontinental Room 430) in a call lasting 11:16 minutes.

"During this call, he confirmed that the final text of the Memorandum was okay and that he had "the boss' approval" that the memorandum could be sent to Admiral Mullen. The boss was an obvious reference to President Zardari," Mansoor insisted.

He also revealed that at 08:45:43 on Tuesday, May 10, 2011, the final draft of the memorandum was sent to the ambassador's private e-mail address. At 08:47, I sent him a BBM reminder to have a look, and that we needed to have a short call for him to verbally confirm everything was GO. The memorandum's contents had been drawn from calls with the ambassador and instructions given by him to me in drafting it. The content of the memo entirely originated from the ambassador (and perhaps those instructing him elsewhere). At 14:51:33 (about 9am in Washington DC), I called my US interlocutor and informed him we were GO and that the memorandum could be delivered. At 1400 hrs on Tuesday, May 10, 2011, Admiral Mullen received the memorandum from my US interlocutor."

The full transcript of his exchanges with HH are also now available to The News. These were:

05/09/2011 12:31 HH: Are you in London? I am here just for 36 hours. Can we meet for after dinner coffee or s'thing?

05/09/2011 12:32 MI: I'm in Monaco but it's no problem for me to fly up. Takes 90 minutes. What time did you have in mind? Where do you want to meet?

05/09/2011 12:35 HH: Pls call me. I'm at the Park Lane Intercon +442071060900 room 430

05/09/2011 12:35 HH: Waiting for ur call now 05/09/2011 13:37 MI: Could access to the 3 stooges who widow the man be arranged as part of the bigger picture?

05/09/2011 13:39 HH: I am sure that can be arranged upon formal demand

05/09/2011 13:40 MI: That is critical to breaking apart the system outside - and understanding what was going on inside. Would we get candor and truth or some brainwashed jargon?

05/09/2011 13:40 MI: The calls to Isphani's people have been made. Very very receptive reaction so far

05/09/2011 13:44 HH: If my friend and I feel sufficiently empowered in relation to the bad boys, I will ensure we get candor

05/09/2011 13:45 MI: Got it. Let me see if we can't get you a sledge hammer with a golden handle

05/09/2011 13:47 HH: Would be nice

05/09/2011 13:47 MI: I'm sending you a PIN message that others cannot see. Please respond. Thanks

05/09/2011 13:48 HH: Okay. Thx

05/09/2011 13:54 MI: Message by PIN sent

05/09/2011 13:56 HH: Okay

05/09/2011 14:22 MI: Message has been delivered to Isphani. Receptiom positive but I need you to agree to do something. Can I call you?

05/09/2011 15:02 MI: Please PING when you can talk and on what number. Time sensitive

05/09/2011 15:05 HH: Entering No 10. Can speak on cell after an hour

05/09/2011 15:05 MI: Okay. I'll wait for your PING

05/09/2011 16:09 HH: PING!!!

05/09/2011 16:09 HH: PING!!!

05/09/2011 16:09 HH: Pls call on cell now +16179532835

05/09/2011 16:10 HH: PING!!!

05/09/2011 16:19 MI: Sorry. Was stuck on call to DC. Pls ping again when ready

05/09/2011 18:26 HH: PING!!!

05/09/2011 18:27 MI: Tried you. Phone says unavailable

05/09/2011 18:38 MI: The message I sent is what MM will see. It will be given directly to him and no one else

05/09/2011 18:59 MI: My friend in DC simply said too many people have been burned in the past two years on the US side and he wanted to insure that on such a sensitive subject, the data and proposal are clear. This is you to me, me to him. He trusts me enough to know I won't bring it forward unless it has top level approval. He does not need it with any email addresses etc. He will scrub that in any event. If you want names to be mentioned, yours, JK, MD, etc, I will do that in person. So get whatever message you want delivered back to me and I'll insure it gets in MM's hands. Best. M

05/09/2011 19:02 MI: By the way, the interesting thing is that they consider AZ's approval of the message worth more than anyone else in country right now. How do you like that?

05/09/2011 20:43 MI: I have additional information you need to hear. Ping when I can call you please

05/09/2011 21:10 MI: Would it be safe to say that you don't want to run this up your flagpole because you need to work this deal from the middle out? Tell me if that's the case and I'll use a different approach that does not require something in writing. What would then be helpful is if I could simply have a BBM saying my talking points are correct, or not, and then you set your table, I'll set my table and make sure you are an honored guest at my table when the party begins. If you're good with that, I just need your okay on the talking points. No need to run it up the az-pole, if you get my drift. M

05/10/2011 00:29 HH: Msg recvd. Tweaking. Middile of road option sounds good. Will call morning.

05/10/2011 00:29 HH: PING!!!

05/10/2011 00:37 MI: Will you be sending me your tweaks or am I to use my copy as final? If tweaks are short, I can call you to get them

05/10/2011 08:47 MI: You have mail from two of my mailboxes. Please read, respond and then we have one last short discussion before I put everything in motion. Thanks. M

05/10/2011 12:45 MI: 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

05/10/2011 13:08 HH: Thanks. Very useful 05/10/2011 13:09 HH: My friend and I agree with middle option. Go ahead

05/10/2011 14:57 MI: Message delivered with caveat that he has to decide how hard to push - we only set the table. He must decide if he wants one course meal or seven course meal. Ball is in play now - make sure you have protected your flanks

05/11/2011 12:33 MI: I've been asked to find out what time your meeting is today. Response so far indicates they are having a hard look, although they find it nearly impossible to believe anyone could deliver such results... to be expected, I suppose. Hope you got home okay. Did you see Mush while in London?

05/11/2011 14:59 MI: PING!!!

05/12/2011 00:36 HH: Call me on my cell

05/12/2011 00:37 HH: Also, M in ur msgs above referred to the Admiral, right?

05/12/2011 00:37 MI: Yes

05/12/2011 00:54 MI: Clarification. M at the end of a message is Mansoor. M or MM in the text of a message is the admiral. Apologies for any confusion. BBM when free. I'll call you. Whether it is shattering news or not is up to you to decide

05/12/2011 01:47 MI: I just received an email from my link to MM independently confirming what you told me by phone. He says MM was appreciative of our intervention and utilized the data to advise and consent

05/12/2011 02:47 HH: Thanx. On way to Isloo. Will touch base on return

05/12/2011 02:54 MI: Good luck. Let me know at any time if you need any help

Details of chat between MI and HH after his Financial article was published until the first week of November, 2011:

HH: you can keep saying you delivered a message and show bbm convos to prove it 

HH: Basically you don't get it 

HH: You have given hardliners in Pak Mil reason to argue there was an effort to get US to conspire against Pak Mil 

HH: You are a US citizen 

HH: You are supposed to look after US interests

MI: I wrote one article. Have not said one word on the record since then to anyone. I think your press is working both sides against the middle, trying to force something out of anyone they can. Period. I don't play in that game 

HH: In Pak political situation, getting burned as a US stooge undermines one's effectiveness 

HH: I will make sure FO shuts up 

HH: Let this die down 

HH: We are in the right 

HH: We will still make things happen 

MI: Okay, well I know my IQ is pretty low so you are probably correct in saying I just don't get it. 

HH: The Pak press be damned 

HH: I stand by you as a man of integrity werving his country 

HH: You don't let ppl back home argue I play for your team, not ours 

MI: But from my point of view, if there was a real threat, as you stated at the time, it is clear you were trying to save a democratic structure from those hawks 

HH: You get to write the book on how you changed US-Pak dynamic and won the war in A'tan (w/ some help from a Paki nerd) :D 

MI: I was happy to get the message in the back door because it served American interests to preserve the democratic civilian setup and the offers made, if achieved, were very much congruent with American objectives in the region 

HH: True that, friend. But you know premature revelation ain't good 

MI: As far as I can see, we did right. Unless there is something I don't see here. But then I'm sorta dumb from down on the farm where them hillbillies live 

HH: Hey! Don't run down hillbillies 

HH: Even the smartest can miss a piece of the puzzle 

HH: You are assuming there are no powerful men in Pak willing to break w/ US. Premature revelation gives those ppl reason to claim 'conspiracy', 'treason' 

HH: That is all you missed. Period. 

HH: And no one else might tell you this, you're becoming irritable and losing your sense of humor as you grow old 

HH: Let this one go. There is much to do. MUCH. And then, there's the beach where I've been waiting to be invited, the slum boy visiting the millionaire 

MI: I'm not a millionaire. But I do know a nice piece of beach! 

HH: I'm not a slum boy either but I know how to make friends with smart people with a sense of history :P 

MI: Jesus, then what the -- are you doing hanging around with me? =D 

HH: We'll make things happen and if we can't, we'll write a book about it 

HH: Who said I was hanging around with you. A minute ago I thought you were about to hang me :D 

MI: :O MI: Really? 

HH: Look, Isloo is a mess. Journos gone wild. Politicos scared of mil. Mil scared of Yanks. 

MI: Tell me one important thing. Who likes you and who hates you in the US establishment? Who wants you to stay and who wants to -- you up? 

HH: The debate abt your oped has caused my detractors to put pressure on my boss 

HH: In US estab, I can count on Leon and Petraeus 

MI: I thought YOU were the boss! 

MI: Who is against you? 

HH: Folks at State don't like me 

MI: Why? 

MI: Too close to AZ? 

HH: They think I am too mixed up w/ DoD and others and do not help them cut deals w/ Pak mil 

HH: Close to AZ bit too 

HH: They are wrong re DoD and others. 

HH: It is just that becoz of A'tan, they are more imp than State 

MI: I always thought HRC was one of your fans. She even has a lady from our parts working with her 

HH: It is folks at State who got pissed off by your mission 

HH: She may be but I was Holbrooke's buddy so everyone who hates him hates me 

HH: I have no time for just pushing paper around 

HH: State likes process 

MI: Which mission? Sudan, Kashmir, there were so many they got pissed off about. I showed them how to do real American diplomacy and that was like a big pile of shit on their desk they couldn't swallow 

HH: Conferences, statements-with nothing changing 

HH: The latest one 

MI: Yeah, I got it. You're right! 

MI: Anyway, State will always hate me because I don't accept their muddling way of doing things 

HH: I don't know for a fact but I won't be surprised if the FO statement was prompted by someone here 

HH: Robin Raphel is back as Grossman's deputy 

HH: You stepped on her toes w/ Kashmir mission

MI: That would be typical. But Grossman knows me and he knows how serious I am. Raphael still hates me for the Kashmir intervention where she did everything she could to fuck me up 

HH: And now they hate me more when folks back home who hate me tell them you and I might have been together on s'thing (whether we were or not is irrelevant to them) 

HH: Grossman is good but he doesn't like anyone playing a larger than life role. Old school 

HH: That's why I have been requesting you to let this one go 

MI: Yeah I know. Found that out when he was our lobbyist. But he's a good guy 

HH: That takes attention off me 

MI: Hmmmmmmmmm....... Not sure anything could take attention off you 

HH: I try and make peace with State and focus on battles at home 

HH: HaHa :D MI: Diplomacy at its finest!!! HH: Yeah, right! But at least I shd not be painted as playing for your team 

MI: Why not? You were a good quarterback for those three days!! 

HH: I want to solve -***ing problems not fight a rearguard action all the time 

HH: :x 

HH: Let us wait and see if Hillary's latest foray changes things in any direction 

MI: Did we really solve a true problem or was this all smoke and mirrors? 

MI: I mean on those days of stress... 

HH: View here is that everyone in Isloo sucks! 

MI: That's pretty much true!!!! 

HH: Too early to say re solution 

MI: But if they all suck, then what did we save - a sinking ship that was going to sink anyway??? 

HH: And there is a genetic problem at that end, predisposed to going round and round in circles 

MI: Yup!! That's for damn sure 

HH: I think we save the situation from an extremely violent outcome 

MI: How can you solve the problems you understand so well from here if all the people in charge over there are wrong? It's only one year til we have a change in the US. Then you really won't like who we have here! 

HH: I mean, Iran might have done better if the Shah had been saved AND some true reform introduced 

HH: Actually, I think the new ppl here might be better to deal with 

HH: They won't take lies easily

MI: Don't bet on it. We have a lot of extremists cropping up and seeping into the system 

MI: They don't trust anything Pakistani 

MI: Don't matter what it is 

HH: Well, in that case find me a cheap piece of beach :) 

MI: Cain, Romney (who hates Muslims), Perry - its all the same crap 

MI: Hmmmmm, yes, I can arrange that 

MI: Why is Z such an idiot? 

HH: But don't go off writing opeds abt arranging piece of beach w'out consulting first :P 

HH: HaHa! Tough question 

HH: I have a speech in 20 mins so let's keep that for later 

HH: Bye for now 

MI: Okay. Good luck. 

HH: Thank you! 

MI: Hi buddy, I understand you/ your foreign office hacks are commissioning hatchet pieces against me. Unfortunate.... very unfortunate 

HH: I will enquire and stop them. There's no need for any of this. 

HH: You haven't helped by engaging so much w/ Pak media. 

HH: What happened to the 'silent soldier'? 

MI: I issued a statement that was designed to put an end to all of this after Imran Khan's rally nonsense. But be that as it may, I'm not going to tolerate character assassination in any of this 

HH: I agree 

HH: Will do my best to prevent it 

MI: Roger that 

HH: Focus on your policy message instead of who did what and we can turn this around 

MI: Please remind your boss that his beloved wife, who later became a good friend of mine, tried the same bullshit tactics in 1996 when Maleeha was envoy - result: her government was dismissed in Nov 1996. 

MI: I'm not someone he can mess around with. He better get that message from me and really understand it 

HH: My response to Imran was very simple and true: I did not write a treasonous letter and if Imran has a copy, he should present it 

HH: I don't think your threatening helps 

MI: That's true from my point of view as well. But politicians are politicians 

MI: I don't make threats. I state facts. Your boss needs reminding of the facts 

HH: Are you sure your side won't deny?

MI: No, maybe they will. But that would also be a mistake. Too much proof on that side as well. 

HH: But does "proving" help anything? 

HH: Is it not the nature of a private mission that officials deny it? 

MI: Don't know. Don't care. My point is simple - I've said what I was going to. Attacks on my person will not be tolerated. And my statement stands. Stop telling lies about me and I might just stip telling the truth about you 

HH: If you were to listen to my advice, you would let this blow over and prove yourself afterwards. You are the one who will outlast the flying shit :) 

HH: That is usually my strategy: be there when the others have self-destructed or blown over 

MI: I've kept to my word - if everyone wants to call it a fabrication and make me the fall guy, then gloves come off and it's not going to be fun or pretty for anyone 

MI: You did something you thought was right outside channels because you felt it would be the most effective way to get the job done. I helped you execute. I haven't thrown you under the bus. But be damn sure I won't let anyone do that to me 

HH: I'll do what I can to keep it pretty 

HH: I haven't. I won't. 

MI: By the way, I know a lot more than you give me credit for about the circumstances that led to May 1 and your role in all that. Just FYI 

HH: Honorable ppl stick with one another. Take care. 

MI: ;) 

HH: I am maintaining silence so pls check with me before reacting if some Pak journo attributes anything to me 

MI: It's interesting (and heartening) to see that many of the proposals made in the memo are now being implemented in the bilateral relationship. Very good 

Sent from my BlackBerry(r) wireless device

Govt is conspiring against the state: Akram Sheikh
By Our correspondent

ISLAMABAD: Senior Advocate Supreme Court, Akram Sheikh Thursday opined that the contents if the memo were tantamount to an act of treason."Yes, it is a straight case of the government conspiring against the State itself," he said when asked about the legal aspects of the Mullen memo.

After an exhaustive reading of the entire document, the senior lawyer said that the memo aimed at violating the sovereignty of the State, the constitutional powers of the Parliament and was a clear violation of the oath of the offices of the purported author and his sanctioning authority. 

He also opined that, "The memo not only intruded upon the sovereignty of the country but it also intruded upon the integrity of the Justice (retd) Javed Iqbal Commission investigating the OBL incident." 

He said that it was indeed a "treasonous move" to invite a foreign country to run amuck in Pakistan in lieu of firming the ruling dispensation's hold on power. He said that prima facie he could see Article 5 and Article 6 of the Constitution coming into play once the authenticity of the memo was established along with the identity of the authors and their precise role in the sordid episode.

He said that it was indeed treasonous to trade for support for government for certain actions while there are also two assembly resolutions on ground precisely barring such very actions including military actions by foreign forces inside Pakistan, Drone attacks and killing of civilians etc. "This appears to be a case of high treason and invasion of the sovereignty of a nuclear state," he concluded.

Ambassador Haqqani again denies sending memo

WASHINGTON: Pakistan’s Ambassador to United States Husain Haqqani has yet again denied writing and sending any secret memo to Adm Mike Mullen and termed it a conspiracy against him, Geo News reported Friday. 

While addressing media in Washington, the ambassador said that the entire raucous has been created due to one man’s claim and he has already responded to that. 

He termed the act a conspiracy and propaganda against him and said that some people do not like a civilian ambassador in the US.

Haqqani again denied writing and sending any secret document and said that he has no objection with the investigation of the matter. 

Haqqani added that he is going to Pakistan on the orders of President Zardari and he will decide about his future as an ambassador.

The treasonous memo!
By Shaheen Sehbai & Mohammad Malick

ISLAMABAD/DUBAI: From a smoking gun to a smouldering fuse, the mysterious memo earned many sobriquets even before its precise contents were known to anyone but a handful of highly secretive power players involved in its drafting and communication. The (in)famous, rather possibly game-changing, Mike Mullen memo, ironically contains six mutinous articles and is now being revealed after Admiral Mike Mullen also confirmed its existence and 'remembered' having received it at the height of the OBL crisis. 

After days of huddles between the troika and other major power players of the country resulted in a resignation offer by President Zardari's closest foreign and domestic policy adviser and Ambassador to the US, Husain Haqqani, the memo has acquired the importance of a political nuclear bomb. 

The memo was sent to Mike Mullen through mutually trusted contacts by US businessman Mansoor Ijaz, who claimed doing so at the behest of an unnamed senior Pakistani diplomat, who has now been identified as none other than Mr. Husain Haqani. The memo is said to have been approved by the President of Pakistan. 

Chief of the Army Staff General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani reportedly endorsed and seemed convinced with the evidence that Mansoor Ijaz has provided to the army and took this up in his latest one-on-one meeting with the president. Sources say without offering many options, the president was 'asked' by Gen. Kayani to immediately summon Haqqani for further enquiries.

The President, who earlier through his spokesman had simply shrugged off the whole affair while rubbishing Mansoor's claims, readily obliged and Haqqani was summoned to Islamabad. So far however, the ambassador is still staying put in Washington on the officially offered explanation that he is finishing up prescheduled diplomatic commitments.

Besides the Memo, the electronic correspondence between the diplomat and Mansoor Ijaz has also become available in full and is a graphic account of dates, time lines, words, and even emoticons, which are normally used by youthful SMS users. Part of this conversation was recently released by Mansoor Ijaz to the media in his almost 3,700 word long statement. All communications between Haqqani and Mansoor have now been transcribed from the cell phones and made available to The News.

The Memo has reached The News from more than one source, both within Pakistan and from abroad, and is nothing short of being offensively repulsive, offering an alarming insight into a power-corrupt mindset willing to compromise national interest for petty personal power gains. It is, arguably, a document crafted by soul-less conspirators who clearly have no shame and dignity, no national pride or respect.

The originator, writer, approver and the ultimate beneficiary of the Memo all look like vicious anti-state collaborators and traitors hiding under the garb of national leaders and proving themselves to be decision-makers occupying positions they never deserved and should never have been allowed to occupy in the first instance. All that has come in bits and pieces in the media so far are simply peanuts as compared to the 929 words of the Confidential Memo, which has been obtained and confirmed to be authentic by The News. 

Couched as a "Briefing for Admiral Mike Mullen," each word has a deep meaning and each sentence carries an offer, a plan, an incentive to demolish national security apparatus of Pakistan, play havoc with its nuclear assets, allow American boots on Pakistani soil and help and abet the US in accusing and proving the Pakistani armed forces and intelligence agencies guilty of "complicity" in the Osama bin Laden affair, his secret stay in Pakistan and his mission. 

To top it all and make such an investigation into a foolproof nutcracker, the memo also invites US authorities to hand pick the investigators panel. Aping Camp-Justice style justice, the memo also assures its recipient that the investigation process, "will result in immediate termination of active service officers". In other words, byebye to a recalcitrant Kayani, adios to a hardnosed Pasha?

The memo brazenly accuses the Pakistan Army leadership of "brinkmanship aimed at bringing down the civilian apparatus in Pakistan" and calls the time it was written in May 2011 as "a 1971 moment in Pakistan's history" when the armed forces had been defeated in East Pakistan and civilians led by ZA Bhutto had gained the upper hand over the military. 

And what do the drafters of this treasonous memo have in mind for changing the security paradigm of Pakistan? In lieu of prolonging their own stay in power, the authors of the memo promised the US administration to replace the, "National security adviser and other national security officials with trusted advisers that include ex-military and civilian leaders favourably viewed by Washington". Talk of being his master's voice. 

The Memo talks of creating a "new national security team" which promises to give "carte blanche" or a blank cheque to the Americans to carry out Osama-type military raids inside Pakistan and any operation on Pakistani soil. Could there be a greater violation of national sovereignty? One wonders. Clearly the authors of the memo did not give two hoots about at least two unanimous resolutions of the national parliament, which categorically forbade any violation of Pakistan's sovereignty by a third country and any action by it against Pakistani citizens inside Pakistan. 

Not only this but the memo also promises that the US would be given the "green signal" to not only track down people on Pakistani soil but also to kill them if so needed. The memo stands in clear defiance of the binding resolutions adopted by the Constitutionally elected parliament.

In a criminally dangerous development, the memo presents as an equivocal fact that the top al-Qaeda leadership is based inside Pakistan when the authors promise to hand over the likes of Ayman Al Zawahiri, Mulla Omar etc. This angle alone would have qualified Pakistan to be declared a rogue terrorist state but try telling that to a duo with vaulting ambitions who appear to have no qualms of destroying the state in order to perpetuate their stay in office and continue with loot and plunder. 

As an icing on the cake, the authors of the memo also promised to bring Pakistan's nuclear assets under a "more verifiable, transparent regime.. For those in the know, this translates into retooling the entire setup and providing unrestricted access to Pakistan's nuclear assets to United States, something that has long figured high on the US wish list. This offered concession also fits in neatly with the framework softly being pushed through the slower and circuitous Cooperative Threat Reduction regime (CTR) That the move to place our nuclear assets at the mercy of the US and its 'friends' has direct security consequences for Pakistan vis-‡-vis India, among other serious concerns, is clearly no priority for the authors. And understandably so because their only concern was to stay in power no matter how. Let the country pay the price of their avarice. 

What political repercussions this memo will have on the power politics of Pakistan is too early to predict but what has been established is that the military establishment is not happy at all with what was going on and the Opposition will jump on the government with a relentless campaign to bring the culprits to book. Will the President stick to his guns and refuse to abandon his man in Washington? Or will he move with ruthless efficiency and speed to sever any possible incriminating link? Will the expected sacking of the envoy signal the end of the crisis or mark the beginning of the next and possibly fateful phase? 

The political landscape is waiting for some more aftershocks, it appears. What is certain however is that the heat from the smouldering fuse is being felt by the keg.

Memo controversy: PML-N wants president to give 'solid statement'
By our correspondent

ISLAMABAD: The memo controversy continued to haunt the Zardari-Gilani government in the National Assembly on Thursday when the PML-N asked the government to clarify its position after US Admiral Mike Mullenís admission that he had indeed received the memo from Pakistani-American businessman, Mansoor Ijaz.

Though no official reply came from the government on the issue raised by the PML-N, PPP legislator Fauzia Wahab questioned the credibility of Mansoor Ijaz. 

Raising a point of order, PML-Nís Khurram Dastagir said the government had been denying the existence of the memo but former US Admiral Mike Mullen had admitted to receiving it. "We need a clear statement and policy on this issue from the government; not mere rhetoric but a solid statement," he said.

He said the people wanted to know why the memo was written by the president of Pakistan, supposedly the symbol of Federation. Dastagir said Mullen's confirmation proved that the rulers wanted to make a deal with foreign powers against Pakistani security agencies. "I want to tell the rulers that the people of Pakistan will not accept such deals," he said.

However, PPP legislator Fauzia Wahab questioned the credibility of Mansoor Ijaz, saying that the man continued to be discussed but no one questioned his credentials. "Heís not an employee of the government; why would he be trusted?" she asked.

She was of the view that forces such as Ijaz deliberately cooked up such plots to destabilise the system. "Trust the elected government rather than those who do not have credibility," she added.

Is the memo treasonous? 
Babar Sattar

Only an independent inquiry will determine the truth about the Memo. But in the event that the content of the Memo sent to Admiral Mike Mullen by Mansoor Ijaz is true, and the Memo was drafted on the instruction of Pakistan’s Ambassador to the United States with the consent of President Asif Zardari, as alleged, it could amount to the contravention of Articles 2A, 5, 9, 10A, 42, 243, 245 of the Constitution of Pakistan and consequently fall within the scope of Article 6 which holds that, any person who “attempts to abrogate or subvert or suspend or hold in abeyance... the Constitution by any unconstitutional means shall be guilty of high treason.”

It is alleged that through the Memo, its authors, instigators, architects and sponsors, sought to drag the US into the internal affairs of Pakistan. Let us consider the deliverables that the Memo offered up to the US and analyze their legal repercussions.

One, the Memo proposed that the President of Pakistan would appoint White House nominated “independent investigators” to conduct an “independent inquiry into the allegations that Pakistan harbored and offered assistance to Osama-bin-Laden and other senior Qaeda operatives”. If true, by making such offer the President offered to impermissibly delegate and assign to the While House and the US president the authority and discretion vested in him by virtue of his constitutional office.

This would amount to a violation of Article 42 and the oath of office pursuant to which the President has sworn to, “bear true faith and allegiance to Pakistan”, “discharge duties and perform functions, honestly and faithfully in accordance with the Constitution and the law, and always in the interest of the sovereignty, integrity, solidarity, well-being and prosperity of Pakistan”, “not allow personal interests to influence official conduct or official decisions”, and “preserve, protect and defend the Constitution”.

And further the President has sworn to, “not directly or indirectly communicate or reveal to any person any matter which shall be brought to [the President’s] consideration or as shall become known to [him] as President of Pakistan, except as may be required for the due discharge of duties”.

Two, the Memo promised that the inquiry into the complicity of Pakistan’s state officials in assisting OBL would “result in findings of tangible values to the US government and the American people. Under Article 5 of the Constitution, loyalty to the state of Pakistan is the basic duty of every citizen of Pakistan, and not fidelity to the US and the American people. But proposing to expose and condemn state officials complicit in the OBL affair, not because the Constitution and the laws of Pakistan demand so but to promote and protect US interests, the Memo proposed to subordinate Pakistan’s interests to US interests.

Three, the Memo offered to replace “the national security adviser and other national security officials with trusted advisers that include ex-military and civilian leaders favorably viewed by Washington, each of whom have long and historical ties to the US military, political and intelligence communities.” Such team would then “either hand over those left in the leadership of Al Qaeda or other affiliated terrorist groups who are still on Pakistani soil”, or give “US forces a ‘green light’ to conduct the necessary operations to capture or kill them on Pakistani soil.”

Such offer indicts the Pakistani state, its agencies and officials of deliberately harboring terrorists even prior to the carrying out of any factual inquiry into the OBL affair. It amounts to a confession on part of the civilian government headed by the President that while being aware of the presence of terrorists and their patronage by Pakistan’s state agencies, it is unable or incapable of taking steps to enforce the laws of Pakistan and weed out terrorism being nurtured within Pakistan’s territorial boundaries. This would also amount to a breach of Article 42.

Further, this is tantamount to a breach of Article 243 and 245 of the Constitution, pursuant to which (i) the President is the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, (ii) he has been vested with the authority to appoint the Army, Air and Naval Chiefs in Pakistan’s best interest, and (iii) the armed forces have been placed under the control of the federal government.

The federal government has the legal authority to sack its national security team. But even if the fragile political health and tattered moral authority of the civilian government together with Pakistan’s checkered history militates against such action, the government has no legal room to solicit the support of a foreign power to tame its armed forces and fix civil-military imbalance. Further, given that the Constitution places the armed forces under effective civilian control, the civilian government’s decision not to exercise such control (except with US blessing) is a serious infraction.

More significantly, offering to invite and allow US boots to kill terrorists on Pakistani soil is a contravention of Article 2A that mandates that, “the integrity of the territories of the Federation, its independence and all its rights including sovereign rights on land, sea or air shall be safeguarded.”

Four, the Memo promises to eliminate Section S of the ISI “charged with maintaining relations to the Taliban, Haqqani network etc.” As a matter of law the Inter-Services Intelligence reports to the Prime Minister of Pakistan, who has also vocally claimed multiple times since the OBL fiasco and the Saleem Shahzad scandal that he is in complete control of this premier agency. The Memo’s admission that the ISI surreptitiously fosters the Taliban, at the cost of Pakistan’s ties with Afghanistan, in effect arraigns not just the ISI (and indirectly the army) but also the Zardari-Gillani government for failing to exercise control, acting as a bystander and thus becoming an abettor.

HH’s resignation alone will not be enough 
Ansar Abbasi

ISLAMABAD: Husain Haqqani insists that he is not involved in the memo scam in any manner and pleads his innocence. His accuser Mansoor Ijaz says he has all the evidence to prove Haqqani wrong. Only a fair and independent probe could decide who among the two is a liar.

Even otherwise, the issue is too serious for Pakistan to be left without a probe. Getting a resignation from Husain Haqqani, the Pakistan’s ambassador to Washington, without getting to the truth would mean anything but justice and fair play.

If Husain Haqqani is innocent, he should neither resign nor be made a scapegoat. If he is involved as alleged by Mansoor, Haqqani’s resignation without a proper investigation would be like pushing the dirt under the rug. It could also be a clever manoeuvre to save President Asif Ali Zardari, on whose alleged desire and direction the memo was reportedly written and delivered to Mike Mullen.

The content of the memo is surely a case of hi treason and that is why it is not merely a matter of life and death for two individuals - Mansoor and Haqqani. The kind of explosive suggestions and recipes it contained if true are a serious cause of concern for every Pakistani. 

Haqqani has the right to shift the blame on some media persons for blowing the things out of proportion and to underplay the publication of Mansoor’s article containing such serious allegations in a reputed paper like Financial Times. No one had ever issued any denial to the FT whereas the Foreign Office and the Presidency came up with their denial weeks after the publication of the article in the London newspaper.

Many question the credibility of Mansoor. But at the same time Haqqani too does not have the trust of many here. Haqqani has his arguments and justifications to make the point that why would he need a person like Mansoor to deliver a memo to Mike Mullen. Mansoor has already made public parts of some convincing evidence to prove his case but without naming the senior diplomat.

The first round of the on-going media war on the memo issue has surely been won by Ijaz as Mike Mullen after his initial denial has finally recalled that he did receive a memo. One thing has been proved that the memo is no more an alleged memo but a real one that was delivered to Mullen. 

The text of the complete memo is far more explosive and treasonous than what was considered before. It is immaterial whether Mike Mullen had given any importance to this memo or not. What is important for us in Pakistan is to ascertain whether Haqqani was part of this. If yes then whether he did it on his own or on the direction of the president. Or this is merely Mansoor’s own imagination.

If Mansoor played a dirty game, he should be exposed and condemned. In case he proves his point against Haqqani, the ambassador should be removed, probed and prosecuted under high treason act. It should also be probed if Haqqani wrongly used President Zardari’s name or Zardari was really behind the memo. Such a scenario would be too scary for every Pakistani.

Justice and fair play demand that an immediate inquiry be held through a high-powered judicial commission to be constituted either by the government or the Supreme Court. It would finally settle the issue and expose the real culprit.

Mullen drops stealth bomb by admitting memo 
News Desk

WASHINGTON: Admiral Mike Mullen on Wednesday dropped an unexpected bomb on sponsors of the secret memo by retracting his earlier denial and announcing that the Mansoor Ijaz memo actually existed and was received by him in May but he did not take any action on it.

The Mullen statement came in the same Foreign Policy blog ‘The Cable’, a publication where his earlier denial had been reported by his ex-spokesman John Kirby. “Mullen had now acknowledged that the Ijaz memo did exist, that he did receive it,” Kirby said in a deadly blow to the repeated denials by the Presidency, the Foreign Office and Ambassador Husain Haqqani.

“But that he never paid any attention to it and took no follow-up action,” Kirby said. The Mullen clarification of his denial came in these words: “Adm. Mullen had no recollection of the memo and no relationship with Mr. Ijaz. After the original article appeared on Foreign Policy’s website, he felt it incumbent upon himself to check his memory. He reached out to others who he believed might have had knowledge of such a memo, and one of them was able to produce a copy of it,” Kirby said.

“That said, neither the contents of the memo nor the proof of its existence altered or affected in any way the manner in which Adm. Mullen conducted himself in his relationship with Gen. Kayani and the Pakistani government. He did not find it at all credible and took no note of it then or later. Therefore, he addressed it with no one.”

Mansoor Ijaz, the US businessman, had never claimed that he had personally delivered the memo to Admiral Mullen but now showing great integrity and righteousness, the retired admiral corrected his earlier statement and stated the truth.

Last week, The Cable published an exclusive report on Mullen’s comments about the memo. “Adm. Mullen does not know Mr. Ijaz and has no recollection of receiving any correspondence from him,” Mullen’s spokesman Capt. John Kirby had stated on Nov 8.

“I cannot say definitively that correspondence did not come from him — the admiral received many missives as chairman from many people every day, some official, some not. But he does not recall one from this individual.”

The Cable also quoted Husain Haqqani saying that he will travel to Islamabad and has sent a letter to Zardari offering his resignation.

“At no point was I asked by you or anyone in the Pakistani government to draft a memo and at no point did I draft or deliver such a memo,” Haqqani said that he had written in his letter to Zardari. 

“I’ve been consistently vilified as being against the Pakistani military even though I have only opposed military intervention in political affairs,” Haqqani said that he wrote. “It’s not easy to operate under the shadow of innuendo and I have not been named by anyone so far, but I am offering to resign in the national interest and leave that to the will of the president.”

Haqqani declined to comment to The Cable whether or not he played any role in the controversy surrounding the memo — for example, discussing it with Ijaz before or after the fact, as the scandal deepened. It’s widely rumoured that Haqqani and Ijaz have known each other for many years.

Haqqani told The Cable that he was the target of a media campaign backed by the supporters of the military’s role in politics because he had focused on building ties between the US and Pakistani civilian governments, rather than with the Pakistani military. “Eighty percent of Pakistanis don’t want a good relationship with the US, and anyone who stands up for the United States can expect to be vilified,” he said.

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