Musharraf’s Anti-American Propagandist Sought Job at Voice of America (VOA)

Master of “Immaculate Deception” Ahmed Quraishi Continues to Spew Venom Against Democratic Politicians and Civil Society While Being a Shadowy Operative of Pakistani Intelligence

By Shaista Sindhu
Originally published December 21, 2007

The Pakistan government sponsored propagandist Ahmed Quraishi, revealed recently as promoting himself as the master of “Immaculate deception” on his consulting company’s website, last year applied for a job at Voice of America (VOA) Urdu television and was actively promoted by the Ministry of Information in Islamabad as well as Pakistan’s intelligence services.

New-Pakistan.Com has learnt that Mr. Quraishi, who does not tire of labeling everyone he disagrees with as agents of the United States applied for the VOA position but was rejected because of the several loopholes in his curriculum vitae. He claimed to have worked in several media organizations where his references did not check out and his role as a public relations and propaganda consultant also worked against him. Although VOA is a US government organization its mandate requires that its employees fulfill journalistic standards.

During the course of applying for the VOA job, Ahmed Quraishi was actively promoted by the Government of Pakistan’s Secretary for Information and Broadcasting Anwar Mahmood who is a key figure in the Musharraf regime’s media handling for several years. Mr Mahmood made calls on Mr Quraishi’s behalf to the then head of VOA Urdu, Brian Silver, who was later removed from his position due to professional reasons.

Mr Silver and Mr Mahmood had worked closely in the run up to VOA getting permission to start an Urdu TV program on the Geo network. The United States government paid Geo for air time in a deal that has never been fully made public. Allegations that could not be independently verified suggest that a Pakistani media company close to Mr Mahmood acted as middle man between VOA and Geo at the time and the key individuals on both sides personally benefited from the financial arrangements.

Mr Mahmood also sought the help of VOA’s Islamabad correspondent Ayaz Gul to promote the case of Mr Quraishi. Several senior members of the media cell of inter Services Intelligence (ISI) also put in a good word on Ahmed Quraishi’s behalf. The ISI had earlier succeeded in securing a job at VOA Urdu TV for Faiz Rehman, a pro-government activist with close ties to the Pakistan embassy in Washington. Mr Rehman has now relinquished his job at VOA.

Mr Quraishi’s attempts to get a job at Voice of America (VOA) expose his hypocrisy, given his long diatribes these days about an American conspiracy to undermine Pakistan’s security and integrity. The question for Mr Quraishi is: If the United States is as evil as he claims these days, why was he trying so hard to get a job working for its official media outlet? Or is it that he is the Voice of ISI who would have promoted the covert agenda of Pakistan’s Secret Police through VOA and is now doing the same with his anti-US, anti-civilian diatribes?

On his own website, Ahmed Quraishi described himself as having the ability to create “Immaculate decelption.”

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