I would not dare to term Mansoor Ijaz as a bald faced liar. Mr Ijaz is an ultra-wealthy international businessman represented by attorney Akram Shiekh and the special guest of the Army for an appearance before the Supreme Court. That is not a hornets nest I want to find myself in the middle of. So let me be clear: I am not at all suggesting that Mansoor Ijaz is a bald faced liar. I just think he happens to be prone to a lot of ‘mistakes’ when it comes to things like ‘facts’, and that the things he say seem to be ‘misunderstood’ quite a bit.
Most recently, Mansoor Ijaz gave an interview to Geo where he told a reporter that he had a conference call with the US State Department who assured him of the US’s support for his trip to Pakistan next Tuesday.
“I had a conference call with the US State Department a couple of days ago. The US government will provide the support that they always do for US citizens,” Ijaz said in the interview in London.
“They (the US government) made their official position very clear and I made my reasons for going very clear. They understand it’s a high profile case and they understand I am a reasonably high-profile American citizen,” he added.
“And I think If, god forbid, anything goes wrong they will certainly be there to help my family make sure that things got sorted out. I am absolutely confident that the American government will do the right thing if something went wrong,” he said without elaborating what could possibly go wrong.
The next day, though, the US Embassy offered a different story.
US embassy in Islamabad said on Saturday that no security has been assured to Pakistani-American businessman Mansoor Ijaz during his visit to Pakistan where he is due to appear before a commission formed to investigate the memogate case on January 24, Geo News reported.
US embassy spokesman was speaking to Geo News and told that Ijaz would be visiting Pakistan as a common US national and would be entitled to avail all the facilities that other Americans get here.
The spokesman made it clear that Ijaz has not been committed any security during his visit
Actually, this is only the latest in a series of ‘mistakes’ or ‘misunderstandings’ that seem to go back to the beginning of the entire case. First there were the statements of Mansoor Ijaz’s good friend Gen Jim Jones who contradicted Ijaz’s claims. Then there was Mansoor Ijaz clearly accusing DG ISI of plotting a coup, only to turn around and claim that he was simply misunderstood. Then there’s the problem with Mansoor Ijaz’s sworn affidavit to the Supreme Court which claims that the memo was written not by Husain Haqqani or Asif Zardari but by “senior active and former Pakistan government officials, some of whom served at the highest levels of the military-intelligence directorates in recent years, and as senior political officers of the civilian government”. The only constant in Mansoor Ijaz’s story seems to be that it will change.
So what are we to make of this Mansoor Ijaz who can’t seem to get his facts right? Who accuses everyone of everything under the sun? Maybe he’s too distracted by the sordid details of his time with ‘Nasty Nancy’ to remember the details of any conversations. Maybe he’s just invented the whole thing out of some bizarre scheme to get famous. Maybe next week we’ll see him and Veena Malik parading around together. Who knows?
What we do know is that we’re spending an immense amount of resources on a case based on the word of this guy.
How much is it costing the Supreme Court to waste its time on this case? How much is it costing the Army? And not only in terms of Rupees, but in terms of opportunity costs. In other words, don’t the Supreme Court and the Army have better things to do?
Mansoor Ijaz is supposed to appear in the Court next week. Ironically, he is set to appear under the special protection of the military and ISI. His own country seems to have abandoned him. I don’t know if he will appear or not. He hasn’t shown up a few times already, though he was ready with a quick excuse as always. I just hope this whole drama gets wrapped up soon. At this point it has become predictable and boring.