Hamid Mir, ISI and ?? A list of Conspiracy theories
by Syed Haider Raza Mehdi – 25th April 2104
So all hell has broken loose in the Pakistani media and the country.
Now the facts as gleaned from public media. Hamid Mir, gets shot, at about 5:15 pm in Karachi, en route to GEO office in Karachi by unknown assailants, while travelling in a white Toyota Corolla Car which belongs to Hertz Rent a Car, its Pakistani franchise owned by Jehangir Siddiqui, related to Mir Shakeel ur Rehman by marriage, as it was turning off from the airport road to Shariah -e -Faisal.
Along with Hamid are the driver (don’t know if he is employed by HERTZ or Hamid Mir or GEO or ?). Also an armed body guard, also don’t know if employed by Hamid Mir, GEO or HERTZ or temporarily hired for the journey, or lent by somebody to provide protection or ?. No information whether guard fired back or made any attempt to do anything to stop the assailants
Assailant who is waiting on the right side of the road, fires on Hamid Mir, sitting in car (don’t know how many bullets). Assailant then jumps onto waiting motorcyclist on the back seat, driven by his partner and chases the car. Driver speeds to get away. Assailants chases car for some distance (don’t know how far ?) fires some more bullets. Later reports indicate 6 bullets.
Driver rushes Hamid Mir to Agha Khan Hospital, where he undergoes emergency surgery and from all latest reports is Masha Allah, recovering well and has also given a statement, implicating state ( ISI) and non-state actors (beats me who they are ??).
The Media Debate
Geo’s position of directly and indirectly implicating ISI in this tragic event is aggressively supported by Amir Mir, Umar Cheema, Absar Alam and the ever green, Ansar Abbasi, and less, but by innuendo, Kashif Abbasi, Meher Abbasi and some others.
In the Government the key players who have supported GEO’s position, either through their silence or actions and words are Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, Defense Minister Khawaja Asif (despite the reference) his resounding silence is deafening, the “poet” Information Minister Perez Rashid and the normally active jack in the box, Khawaja Saad Rafique, who never lets an opportunity go by, to put his foot in his mouth. While I do not know anyone personally, I have an opinion for their support which comes a little later.
The Rest of the media’s position is clearly against GEO’s highly irresponsible, inappropriate and, to many observers, very obvious, anti-state like and subversive attempt to drag the ISI and its DG as the guilty party in a manner reminiscent of a witch hunt or a Klu Klux Klan raid.
The only Government person of substance supporting this position is Interior Minister, Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan. Also this group and their supporters are in agreement on the freedom of opinion to present one’s viewpoint, even if against state institutions like the army or the ISI, given their past actions of military rule and high handedness, but all are clear that this should be done without defaming or bringing them into disrepute or deliberately weaken them.
What they are really saying is the proverbial. Don’t throw the baby with the bathwater
So here is my list of conspiracy theories and assumptions on who wants the Army / ISI
1. Under civilian control, and confined to its specified role.
2. Weakened and hence unable to exert its influence on civilian rule or “misrule”.
3. Made completely ineffective, denuked, weaken the country’s military prowess, and or resultantly, God Forbid, result in the end of what we know of Pakistan today.
Please read these carefully as the subsequent commentary refers to the above reasons as 1, 2 and 3
Pakistan Army and ISI– Yes to 1 above, Could they have planned and executed this? Highly unlikely, even though they have the capability. Doesn’t make sense especially given today’s situation in Pakistan.
Nawaz Sharif– Yes to 1 and 2 above. Firstly because of past treatment, secondly his political view that it should be firmly under a civilian Prime Minister and thirdly his autocratic persona which wants complete and total authority. Today, legally, this authority vests with the civilian PM, but the past is still fresh and the wounds still raw. I think this clouds his judgment and he wants it quickly and uses dubious street type Machiavellian tactics, good cop bad cop tactics, to try and achieve his goal.
All these are attempts to reduce the army’s image, which despite its Martial Law past, is still the most revered, loved and respected institution in the country, and also the most effective, most disciplined, most powerful and relatively meritocracy based organisation.
Nawaz Sharif succeeded in his moves to exercise control over the army, under Gen. Karamat and unsuccessfully under Gen Musharraf. So anybody and everybody, inside or outside the country, who either overtly or covertly, wants 1 and 2 , also helps him get his piece of cake. Hence his terrible and some say cowardly or “foxy” silence and lack of a firm position in defense of the Army / ISI, against GEO’s highly irresponsible arraignment of ISI and its DG.
Hamid Mir, Amir Mir, Absar Alam, Umar Cheema, Minister Khawaja Asif, Minister Khawaja Saad Rafique, Minister Pervez Rasheed, and their supporters, all clearly want 1 and 2. So are all indirect NS allies in helping him achieve his objectives, whether consciously or sub consciously.
I personally think they want this because they believe that the Army and ISI etc have been the cause of Pakistan’s current state and ills and hence must be reined in and kept in its place. I do not believe that they are traitors or enemies of the state. But I do also believe that they go and have gone significantly overboard, in their anti Army / ISI rants, and say and do things which are detrimental to the state, causing much harm.
Many have suffered such as Umar Cheema, Khawaja Saad Rafique and Khawaja Safdar and they think the ISI was behind what happened to them. So their anger is also personal.
Hamid Mir amongst the whole lot, was especially vocal and took on the role of the media’s anti army anti-establishment leader and cried “Fire”, many times, in my opinion, over extending his zeal, exceeding his mandate of a responsible journalist, perhaps fuelled by his fame and ego and ability to influence events through his show. This he has done at the cost of things which should have been kept under wraps, given the extraordinary internal /external threats facing Pakistan today. It is alleged that he has been in direct and clandestine communication with the TTP. And some terrible rumours about this nexus with the TTP and the deaths of Col Imam and Squadron leader Khalid, both killed in cold blood by the TTP
GEO. This organisation is an enigma. Why would Pakistan’s largest, most powerful, most successful, most profitable media group, take on the military establishment so openly, so brazenly, so obviously and so consistently. Is it because they also want 1 and 2? Or should we add 3 to it. And this is where rumor mills go into overdrive.
Their owner lives in Dubai, who can only be contacted through a Pakistani UAN number, unless one is part of his very inner and close circle, because no one gives out his phone or contact details. He is a mysterious furtive Howard Hughes type figure.
What is this person’s and his media empire’s agenda and objective?. Serious question. More importantly why? No clear answers here, just some very deeply disturbing whispers. Some say they have concrete proof that 42% shares of International Media Group, owners of GEO and The News, are owned by the richest “Reliable” person in our neighboring country. Whatever they be, they do help NS achieve his objectives of supreme civilian rule and despite this huge overreach by GEO, the PM remains smugly and tragically silent.
Could someone in GEO have orchestrated this and made poor Hamid Mir, the innocent and brutal victim of a really evil design? Possible.
TTP and Ansar Abbasi. Yes I have very consciously put Ansar Abbasi in this lot, because he is not the saint that he appears, and does not have the same reason for their anti army and ISI stance as Hamid Mir and company have. He clearly wants an end to the current state and fully subscribes to the TTP end game. He is the TTP’s Trojan horse, infiltrated into main stream media, as are some others. This group wants 3. So they can take over the state and impose their mayhem, slaughter and their terrible version of a Very Pure Faith. Before they achieve 3, they will help NS get his 1 and 2. So could they have planned and executed this? Perfectly possible.
Baluchistan Insurgents. Want 3. Could have planned and executed?. Yes.
Afghanistan. Clearly 1 and 2 because of their belief how these institutions have influenced Afghanistan’s internal politics and in their opinion the cause of much of their present day problems. 3 is an unlikely option. Possibly planned and executed? Yes.
USA. 1 and 2 when its suits them. For a denuked Pakistan perhaps even 3. Possibly planned and executed? Possible but improbable. While they have the capability, but, in my opinion with their hands full in Afghanistan at the moment, the timing is not right. But then again not improbable.
India. As above. If I were India, I would have the same view. Possibly planned & executed? Yes
So here’s the simple conclusion. Many players wanted this action on Hamid Mir to bring the Army and ISI into disrepute, bring about open confrontation between the Army and the PM and amongst ordinary Pakistani and sow seeds of doubt and achieve their objectives as listed above.
All those who have the good of Pakistan at heart, and are sincere patriots, and want the rule of law, a thriving prosperous country with equal and fair access to education, health care, job opportunities, safety of life and property for all its citizens, and system which dispenses justice and a state in which all institutions play their rightful role, should be very vary, especially at this extremely serious time in our history, that in their desire for civilian supremacy and military influence containment, they should not unwittingly, play into the hands of those enemies of Pakistan, using their “soft spots” to goad them into this confrontation.
The enemies of Pakistan have a single agenda, of a weak on its knees Pakistan, or a Pakistan with a different geography as we know today, Ponder on this please