Husain Haqqani

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Husain Haqqani
حسین حقّانی
H.Haqqani.jpg
24th Pakistan Ambassador to the United States
In office
13 April 2008 – 22 November 2011
Preceded by Mahmud Ali Durrani
Succeeded by Sherry Rehman
High Commissioner of Pakistan to Sri Lanka
In office
11 May 1992 – 28 June 1993
Preceded by Tariq Mir
Succeeded by Tariq Altaf
Personal details
Born (1956-07-01) 1 July 1956 (age 57)
Karachi, Pakistan
Spouse(s) Farahnaz Ispahani
Children 3 daughters
1 son
Alma mater University of Karachi
Profession Journalist
Religion Islam

Husain Haqqani (Urdu: حسین حقّانی; born July 1, 1956), alternately spelled Hussain Haqqani, is a Pakistani political author and the former Pakistan Ambassador to the United States. He was appointed as the Pakistan ambassador in April 2008, after being exiled in 1999 following criticisms against the government of then-President Pervez Musharraf. He resigned on November 22, 2011 following allegations of his involvement in the Memogate controversy.[1]

Prior to serving as Ambassador to the United States, Haqqani held several positions including as an adviser to three former Pakistani prime ministers and as envoy to Sri Lanka. In additions, Haqqani has also been a journalist, scholar and educator. He is currently a Senior Fellow and Director for South and Central Asia at the Hudson Institute in Washington, D.C. and co-editor of Hudson's signature journal Current Trends in Islamist Ideology.[2] Haqqani is also the Director of the Center of International Relations and a Professor of the Practice of International Relations at Boston University.[3]

Early life[edit]

Haqqani was born in Karachi where he was raised in a conservative but educated middle-class family in Malir outside Karachi.[citation needed] He began his interest in journalism in high school. In 1973 he joined Karachi University. He frequently visited the library at the U.S. consulate, reading volumes of American history. Later, when students wanted to attack the consulate as part of a protest against the United States, Haqqani refused.[4] Haqqani received a B.A. degree with distinction in 1977 and a M.A. degree with distinction in international relations in 1980 from the University of Karachi.[5]

Career[edit]

Journalism[edit]

Haqqani worked as a full-time journalist from 1980-88. He covered the war in Afghanistan for Voice of America radio; served as the Pakistan and Afghanistan correspondent for Far Eastern Economic Review; and worked in Hong Kong as the East Asian correspondent for the London-based Arabia: the Islamic World Review.[citation needed] He worked for the state broadcaster Pakistan Television during the general elections of 1985.[6]

Politics[edit]

Haqqani started his political career at the University of Karachi, where he became President of the Karachi University Students Union[7] which was dominated by the Islami Jamiat-e-Talaba, the student wing of the Jamaat-e-Islami.[6] Haqqani explained his association with Islamists as a student in an article in the Asian Wall Street Journal. "Over the last three decades, I have alternated between being attracted to and repulsed by political Islam."[7]

In 1988, he worked in the political campaign for an alliance led by Nawaz Sharif; In 1990, he was special assistant to Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif; from 1990–92, he was special assistant and spokesman for Prime Minister Sharif; from 1992–93, he became one of Pakistan's youngest ambassadors, serving in Sri Lanka; from 1993–95, he was spokesman to Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto; from 1995–96, he was chairman of the House Building Finance Corporation.[5]

From 2004-08, Haqqani was an associate professor for international relations at Boston University. In addition, he co-chaired the Project on Islam and Democracy at the Hudson Institute in Washington, and was co-editor of the international scholarly journal Current Trends in Islamist Ideology. Among his numerous writing credits are "Pakistan Between Mosque and Military" for the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace; "Islam’s Medieval Outposts" for the journal Foreign Policy, and "The Role of Islam in Pakistan’s Future" for Washington Quarterly.[citation needed]

Husain Haqqani at the OPEN Forum in Northern California, June 2008 soon after his appointment as Ambassador to the United States

In April 2008, Haqqani succeeded Mahmud Ali Durrani as the US ambassador to Pakistan.[8][9]

Alleged secret memo and resignation[edit]

In 2011, American businessman Mansoor Ijaz said Haqqani asked him to deliver a secret memorandum to Adm. Mike Mullen, then chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, asking for US intervention to prevent a military takeover in Pakistan.[10][11] Haqqani denied the accusations.[12] He was summoned to Islamabad by Prime Minister Yousef Raza Gilani to discuss the allegations and afterwards tendered his resignation.[12] While a judicial commission organized by the Pakistan Supreme Court investigated,[13] Haqqani was not allowed to leave the country.[14] He sought refuge in the presidential palace and later the Prime Minister's residence, citing threats to his life by extremist groups who accused him of treason.[15] In January, 2012, Pakistan's Supreme Court allowed Haqqani to leave the country temporarily to attend hearings remotely.[16]

In June 2012, the Judicial Commission released a report concluding that the memorandum was authentic and that Haqqani was its "originator and architect".[17]:119 The justices further found that Haqqani had undermined the country's security and that Haqqani misled Ijaz to believe the memorandum had the Pakistani president's approval.[18] Pakistan's Supreme Court noted that the commission was only expressing its opinion, and there had been neither official finding of facts nor determination of guilt in the case.[19]

Haqqani said the Commission's report was one-sided and defended his patriotism[20] and his innocence.[21] Haqqani has not returned to Pakistan, citing threats on his life.[22]

Views[edit]

He said the historical bilateral relationship was "erratic", citing U.S. engagement from the early Cold War to the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, when the U.S. government backed Afghan fighters by funneling support through the Pakistani channels. He is skeptical that completely stabilizing the relationship can be accomplished during the tenure of one ambassador, but seeks to "lay the foundations of a relationship that is multidimensional: political, military, cultural, economic and social".[23]

The Wall Street Journal described Haqqani as "a hostage" while he was in Pakistan and published an interview with him from the Prime Minister’s house in which he outlined why he was hated by Pakistan's intelligence services and Jihadi groups.[24] Michel Hirsh, writing in The Atlantic, described Haqqani as "The Last Friendly Pakistani" towards the U.S.[25] Jeffrey Goldberg, writing for The Atlantic and Bloomberg News, has been a consistent supporter of Haqqani, calling him "The Hardest Working Man in Washington" and criticizing Pakistan's military and security services[26][27] Simon Tisdall of The Guardian called Haqqani "an instinctive ally of the west" and attributed Memogate to the ambassador’s difficult relationship with Pakistan intelligence service.[28]

Personal life[edit]

In March 2000, Haqqani married Farahnaz Ispahani, a former producer at CNN and MSNBC, member of the Pakistani National Assembly, and the granddaughter of Mirza Abol Hassan Ispahani, Pakistan's first ambassador to Washington. The Pakistan Ambassador's residence in Washington was purchased and donated by her grandfather.[29] Haqqani has lived in the United States since 2002.[30]

Pakistan Embassy residence in Washington, D.C.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Pakistan US ambassador Haqqani resigns over 'memogate' ' 22 November 2011, BBC News
  2. ^ "Hudson Institute Biography". 
  3. ^ "Boston University Faculty Biography". 
  4. ^ Pakistan Daily Times, October 25, 2008
  5. ^ a b Boston University, curriculum vitae
  6. ^ a b Sehgal, Ikram (17 May 2012). "The ‘Haqqani’ network". The News International. 
  7. ^ a b http://www.husainhaqqani.com/1999/the-day-i-broke-with-the-revolution/
  8. ^ Washington Post, May 15, 2008
  9. ^ "Ambassador Durrani likely to be made security adviser", The News, March 29, 2008
  10. ^ Desk Correspondent (2011-11-18). "Mansoor Ijaz names Haqqani as his source". Dawn. Retrieved 2011-11-23. 
  11. ^ Mullen Memorandum "Secret Pakistan Memo to Adm Mike Mullen", The Washington Post, 2011-11-17, Accessed 2014-04-01.
  12. ^ a b Salman Masood (2011-11-18). "Pakistani Envoy Offers to Resign Over Memo". New York Times. Retrieved 2011-11-23. 
  13. ^ Tanveer, Rana "Memogate: Supreme Court admits Nawaz petition for regular hearing", The Express Tribune, 2011-11-28. Accessed 2014-03-24.
  14. ^ Verma, Smitha "I have no desire to become a martyr", Telegraph India, 2013-11-03, Accessed 2014-04-02.
  15. ^ BBC News Asia "Pakistan 'memogate' envoy Husain Haqqani gets travel ban", BBC, 2011-12-01. Accessed 2014-04-01.
  16. ^ BBC News Asia "Pakistan 'memogate': Husain Haqqani travel ban lifted", BBC, 2012-01-30. Accessed 2014-04-16.
  17. ^ Pakistan Judicial Commission "Pages 108-121, Judicial Commission Report", Supreme Court of Pakistan, 2012-06-12. Accessed 2014-03-24.
  18. ^ Ahmad, Fasih and Taseer, Shehrbano "Pakistan: Judges Rebuke Haqqani in Memogate Scandal", The Daily Beast, 2012-06-13, Accessed 2014-04-02.
  19. ^ INP ["http://www.nation.com.pk/islamabad/12-Jul-2012/memo-commission-didnt-declare-husain-haqqani-traitor-sc Memo commission didn't declare Husain Haqqani traitor: Supreme Court]", The Nation (Pakistan), 2012-07-12, Accessed 2014-04-16.
  20. ^ Frum, David "Haqqani: I am No Traitor", The Daily Beast, 2012-06-16, Accessed 2014-04-02.
  21. ^ Hirsh, Michael "The Last Friendly Pakistani", The Atlantic, 2011-11-23, Accessed 2014-04-02.
  22. ^ Masood, Salman "Former Ambassador to U.S. Cites Threats in Pakistan Over Memo Case", New York Times, 2012-03-29. Accessed 2014-04-16.
  23. ^ Associated Press of Pakistan, October 5, 2008
  24. ^ http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204257504577154730006383176.html
  25. ^ http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2011/11/the-last-friendly-pakistani/249009/
  26. ^ http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2011/11/the-pakistani-army-wins-a-battle-over-husain-haqqani-but-continues-to-lose-a-war/248963/
  27. ^ http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2011/11/ambassador-haqqani-i-am-a-pakistani-i-will-die-a-pakistani/248635/
  28. ^ http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/nov/23/hasain-haqqani-pakistan-political-football
  29. ^ Washington Post, May 15, 2008
  30. ^ Dhume, Sadanand (November 24, 2011). "A U.S.-Pakistan Reset". The Wall Street Journal. 

External links[edit]

Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
Tariq M. Mir
Pakistan Ambassador to Sri Lanka
1992 – 1993
Succeeded by
Tariq Altaf
Preceded by
Mahmud Ali Durrani
Pakistan Ambassador to the United States
2008 – 2011
Succeeded by
Sherry Rehman