The New East India Companies of Pakistan
Arguably the most dangerous nation on earth, Pakistan is a bubbling cauldron of corruption and crime, where grasping politicians, greedy generals, drug smugglers, and terrorists intermix in a volatile web, made more threatening by a nuclear bazaar operated as a national sideline. Corruption and criminality run from the top down, with political class constantly losing the national treasury and distorting economic policy for personal gain. Bank loans are granted largely on the basis of status and connections. The rich stash much of their money abroad in those willing western coffers, while exhibiting little inclination to repay their rupee borrowings. Banks fail and Pakistanis lose their meager savings. At the bottom, wretched and illiterate masses seethe with discontent, a perfect nurturing ground for terrorism. It started a long time ago.
In the distant past the East India Company used to siphon away a great deal of the assets and treasures of the Indian subcontinent or buy them at very low prices and send them abroad when the British ruled the country.
But in recent decades it is the rich and crafty Pakistanis who have siphoned away a large part of the resources of the country with unremitting vigor. That began when a part of our export earnings was allowed to be kept abroad, with the practice of under-invoicing the exports or over-invoicing the imports. And that was followed by retaining abroad an increasing part of the money obtained as kickbacks during the import of machinery from the late 1950s.
Later, politicians in office, senior bureaucrats and top military commanders joined them by sending their illegally earned money abroad. Subsequently, obtaining large bribes abroad and putting them in their bank accounts there became fashion. Some of the top rulers too joined them merrily…
The total wealth siphoned away in this manner has been estimated to be between 60 billion and 100 billion dollars.
Upton taking office in 1998, Bhutto reportedly appointed 26,000 party hacks to state jobs, including positions in state-owned banks. An orgy of lending without proper collateral followed. Allegedly, Bhutto and Zardari “gave instructions for billions of rupees of unsecured government loans to be given to 50 large projects. The loans were sanctioned in the names of “front men” but went to the “Bhutto-Zardari combine.” Zardari suggested that such loans are “normal in the Third World to encourage industrialization.” He used 421 million rupees (about 10 million) to acquire a major interest in three new sugar mills, all done through nominees acting on his behalf. In another deal he allegedly received a 40 million rupee kickback on a contract involving the Pakistan Steel Mill, handled by two of his cronies. Along the way Zardari acquired a succession of nicknames: Mr. 5 percent, Mr. 10 percent, Mr. 20 percent, and Mr. 30 percent and finally, in Bhutto’s second term when he was appointed “minister of investments,” Mr. 100 percent.
The Pakistan government’s largest source of revenues is customs duties, and therefore evasion of duties is a national pastime. Isn’t there some way to tap into this major income stream, pretending to fight customs corruption and getting rich at the same time> of course; we can hire a reputable (or disreputable, as the case he may be) inspection company, have the government pay the company about a one percent fee to do price checking on imports, and get multimillion –dollar bribes paid to us upon award of the contracts. Societe Generale de Durveillance (SGS), headquartered in Switzerland, and its then subsidiary Cotecna, the biggest group in the inspection business, readily agreed to this subterfuge. Letters in 1994 promised “consultancy fees,” meaning kickbacks, of 6 percent and 3 percent to two British Virgin Islands (BVI) companies. Bomer Finances Inc. and Nassam Overseas Inc., controlled by Bhutto and Zardari. Payments of $12 million were made to Swiss bank accounts of the BVI companies. SGS allegedly has paid kickbacks on other inspection contracts around the world. Upon being accused in the inspection kickback scheme, Bhutto sniffed, “I ran the government to the best of my honest ability. And I did it for nothing but acknowledgment and love.”
Then there was the 1994 deal to import $83 million worth of tractors from Poland. Ursus Tractors allegedly paid a 7 percent commission to another Zardari’s Caribbean companies, Dargal Associated. Bhutto waived import duties on the tractors, costing the Pakistani government some 1.7 billion rupees in lost revenues. Upon discovery of this scheme the Poles hastened to turn over 500 pages of documentation confirming the kickback.
The Polish tractor deal was just a warm-up for the French fighter jet deal. After the U.S. government cancelled a sale of two squadrons of F-16s, Bhutto dangled a $4 billion contract for Mirages in front of the French Dassault Aviation; Snecma, the engine manufactrurer; and Thomas- CSF, producer of aviation electronics. Without missing a beat they allegedly agreed to pay a “remuneration” of 5 percent to Marleton Business S.A. , yet another of Zardari’s British Virgin Island Companies. This would have generated a tidy $200 million for the Bhutto-Zardari couple, but unfortunately for them she was driven from office before they could collect.
Ah, but the gold deal gave some comfort to these aspiring kleptocrats. Gold is culturally imported in the Asian subcontinent, in particular as a way for women to accumulate wealth. Upwards of $100 billion is invested in this unproductive asset in Pakistan, India, and surrounding countries. Smuggling is a big business. Ostensibly to regulate the trade, a Pakistani bullion dealer in Dubai, Abdul Razzak Yaqub, asked Bhutto for an exclusive import license. In 1994, yet another Zardari offshore company, M.S. Capricorn Trading, was created in the British Virgin Islands. Later in the year, Jens Schlegelmilch, “a Swiss lawyer who was the Bhutto family’s attorney in Europe and close personal friend for more than 20 years,” opened an account for Capricorn Trading at the Dubai branch of Citibank. According to a 1999 U.S. Senate report: “Mr. Schlegelmilch did not reveal to the Dubai banker that Mr. Zardari was the beneficial owner of the PIC (private investment company), and the account manager never asked him the identity of the beneficial owner of the account… shortly after opening the account in Dubai, Mr. Schlegelmilch signed a standard referral agreement with Citibank Switzerland private bank guaranteeing him 20 percent of the first three years of client net revenues earned by the bank from each client he referred to the private bank. In other words, Citibank was contracting to pay a finder’s fee for millions brought in from the dubious sources. Citibank went to open 3 accounts in Switzerland for Zardari, with Schlegelmich as the signatory.
In October of 1994, Citibank records show that $10 million was deposited into Capricorn’s Dubai account by Razzak Yaqub’s company, A.R.Y. International Exchange. In December, Razzak Yaqub received an exclusive import license and proceeded over the next three years to ship more than $500 million in gold to Pakistan. Additional deposits flowed into the Dubai and Swiss Citibank accounts, and funds also were shifted to Citibank Channel Island subsidiaries. The original ceiling on the accounts of $40 million was reached quickly.
Toward the end of her second term, the Bhutto case took a bizarre turn, Representatives of the Pakistan Muslim League, an opposition party, met in 1995 with private investigators in London who offered documentary proof from an unmade source of Bhutto’s corruption, in return for a modest fee of $10 million. That deal was not consummated, but two years later, with Bhutto out of office and under investigation, the offer was reportedly concluded for $1 million. The documents appeared to have been taken from the Geneva office of Jens Schlegelmilch.
In 2000 Pakistan’s National Accountability Bureau, with the thankless task of investigating corruption, drew upon these documents and other sources and released details of assets and accounts belonging to Bhutto and Zardari. Even to jaded observers, the scale of their holdings was stunning hundreds of properties, dozens of companies and dozens of bank accounts. A partial listing of only foreign holdings reported by the National Accountability Bureau is provided in table 3.4.
Foreign Assets Allegedly Belonging to Bhutto & Zardari
Properites / Companies Banks Accounts
Rockwood Estate, Surrey, 20 room mansion, 355 acres, polo grounds; London 4 flats
Barclays Bank, 3 accounts; National Westminster Bank, Harrods Bank & Midland Bank
Normandy Chateau, in Zardari’s parents name; Cannes properties
Credit Agricole, 3 accounts; Banque Nationale de Paris; Banque La Henin
Union Bank of Switzerland; Barclays Bank (Geneva); Citibank (Geneva); Banque Nationale de Paris; Swiss Bank Corporation; Credit Suisses; Pictet et Cie; Banque Francaise du Commerce; Cantrade Ormond Burrus; Banque Pasha
Wellington East, Florida; India Mound, Florida; 3 residential properties, Florida; Intro Food, Florida; Dynatel Trading, Florida; A.S. Realty, Florida; Bon Voyage Travel, Florida
Barclays Bank, New York; Citibank, New York; UBS, New York
British Virgin Island
Bomer Finance, Mariston Securities, Marleton Business, Capricorn Trading, Dargal Associated, Fargarita Consulting, Marvil Associated, Penbury Finance, Oxton Trading, Brinslen Investment, Climitex Holding, Elkins Holiding, Minterler Invest, Silvernut Investment, Tacolen Investment, Tulerston Invest, Marledon Invest, Dustan Trading, Reconstruction and Development Finance, Nassam Alexander
Summarizing this and other documentation, the New York Times reported that the material included “ …letters from executives promising payoffs, with details of the percentage payments to be made; memorandums detailing meetings at which the “commissions” and “remunerations” were agreed on, and certificates incorporating the offshore companies used as fronts in the deals…The documents also revealed the crucial role played by Western institutions. Apart from the companies that made payoffs, and the network of banks that handled the money… the arrangements made by the Bhutto family for their wealth relied on Western property companies, Western lawyers and a network of Western friends.
Even the Swiss finally had had enough. Seventeen bank accounts linked to Bhutto and Zardari were frozen. The two were charged with money laundering in connection with bribes received from the inspection company SGS and were convicted by a Swiss court in 2003, with fines and suspended prison sentences. This was short-lived; the decision was overturned and referred back to cantonal prosecutors upon appeal. Meanwhile, Zardari was in prison in Pakistan from 1996 to 2004 on assorted charges.
Bhutto, with her father executed, two brothers assassinated, her mother an amnesiac, her husband still troublesome, and she living in exile between London and Dubai, portrays herself as the victim: “I never asked for power. I think they (the Pakistani people) need me. I don’t think it’s addictive. You want to run away from it, but it doesn’t let you go… I think the reason this happens is that we want to give love and we receive love.”
Save you tears. In the global collection of displaces leaders, Benazir Bhutto may be the least sympathetic character of them all.
While Benazir Bhutto hated the general for executing her father, Nawaz Sharif early on figured out that they held the real power in Pakistan. His father had established a foundry in 1939 and, together with six brothers, had struggled for years only to see their business nationalized by Ali Bhutto’s regime in 1972. This sealed decades of enmity between the Bhutto’s and the Sharif’s. Following the military coup and General Zia’s assumption of power, the business- Ittefaq- was returned to the family hands in 1980. Nawaz Sharif became a director and cultivated relations with senior military officers. This led to his appointment as finance minister of Punjab and then elections as chief minister of this most populous province in 1985.
During the 1980s and early 1990s, given Sharif’s political control of Punjab and eventual prime minister ship of the country, Ittefaq Industries grew from its original single foundry into 30 businesses producing steel, sugar, paper, and textiles, with combined revenues of $400 million, making it one of the biggest private conglomerates in the nation. As in many other countries, when you control the political realm, you can get anything you want in the economic realm.
With Lahore, the capital of Punjab, serving as the seat of the family’s power, one of the first things Sharif did upon becoming prime minister in 1990 was build his long-dreamed of superhighway from there to the capital, Islamabad. Estimated to cost 8.5 billion rupees, the project went through two biddings. Daewoo of Korea, strengthening its proposals with midnight meetings, was the highest bidder both times, so obviously it won the contract and delivered the job at well over 20 billion rupees.
A new highway needs new cars. Sharif authorized importation of 50,000 vehicles duty free, reportedly costing the government $700 million in lost customs duties. Banks were forced to make loans for vehicle purchases to would-be taxi cab drivers upon receipt of 10 percent deposit. Borrowers got their “Nawaz Sharif” cabs, and some 60 percent of them promptly defaulted. This left the banks with $500 million or so in unpaid loans. Vehicle dealers reportedly made a killing and expressed their appreciation in expected ways.
Under Sharif, unpaid bank loans and massive tax evasion remained the favorite ways to get rich. Upon his loss of power the usurping government published a list of 322 of the largest loan defaulters, representing almost $3 billion out of $4 billion owed to banks. Sharif and his family were tagged for $60 million. The Ittefaq Group went bankrupt in 1993 when Sharif lost his premiership the first time. By then only three units in the group were operational, and loan defaults of the remaining companies totaled some 5.7 rupees, more than $100 million.
Like Bhutto, offshore companies have been linked to Sharif, three in the British Virgin Islands by the names of Nescoll, Nielson, and Shamrock and another in the Channel Islands known as Chandron Jersey Pvt. Ltd. Some of these entities allegedly were used to facilitate purchase of four rather grand flats on Park Lane in London, at various times occupied by Sharif family members. Reportedly, payment transfers were made to Banque Paribas en Suisse, which then instructed Sharif’s offshore companies Nescoll and Nielson to purchase the four luxury suites.
In her second term, Benazir Bhutto had Pakistan’s Federal Investigating Agency begin a probe into financial affairs of Nawaz Sharif and his family. The probe was headed by Rehman Malik, deputy director general of the agency. Malik had fortified his reputation earlier by aiding in the arrest of Ramzi Yousef, mastermind of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. During Sharif’s second term, the draft report of the investigation was suppressed, Malik was jailed for a year and later reportedly survived an assassination attempt, after which he fled to London. The Malik report, five years in the making, was released in 1998, with explosive revelations:
The records, including government documents, signed affidavits from Pakistani officials, bank files and property records, detail deals that Mr. Malik says benefited Mr. Sharif, his family and political associates.
•At least $160 million pocketed from a contract to build a highway from Lahore, his hometown , to Islamabad, the nation’s capital.
•At least $140 million in unsecured loans from Pakistan’s state banks
•More than $60 million generated from government rebates on sugar exported by mills controlled by Mr. Sharif and his business associates
•At least $58 million skimmed from inflated prices paid for imported wheat from the United States and Canada. In the wheat deal, Mr. Sharif’s government paid prices far above market value to a private company owned by a close associate of his in Washington, the records show. Falsely inflated invoices for the wheat generated tens of millions of dollars in cash.
The report went on to state that “ The extent and magnitude of this corruption is so staggering that it has put the very integrity of the country at state.” In an interview, Malik added: “No other leader of Pakistan has taken that much money from the banks. There is no rule of law in Pakistan. It doesn’t exist.
What brought Sharif down in his second term was his attempt to acquire virtually dictatorial powers. In 1997 he rammed a bill through his compliant parliament requiring legislators to vote as their party leaders directed. In 1998 he introduced a bill to impose Shari’s law. (Muslim religious law) across Pakistan, with himself empowered to issue unilateral directives in the name of Islam. In 1999 he sought to sideline the army by replacing Chief of Staff Pervez Musharraf with a more pliable crony. He forgot the lessons he had learned in the 1980s: the army controls Pakistan and politicians are a nuisance. As Musharraf was returning from Sri Lanka, Sharif tried to sack him in midair and deny the Pakistan International Airways flight with 200 civilians on board landing right in Karachi. Musharraf radioed from the aircraft through Dubai to his commander in Karachi, ordering him to seize the airport control tower, accomplished as the plane descended almost out of fuel. Musharraf turned the tables and completed his coup, and Sharif was jailed.
But Sharif had little to fear. This, after all, is Pakistan. Musharraf needed to consolidate his power with the generals, and Sharif knew details about the corruption of most of the brass. Obviously, it is better to tread lightly around the edges of your peer group’s own thievery. So Musharraf had Sharif probed, tried, convicted, and sentenced to life in prison, but then in 2000 exiled him to Saudi Arabia. Twenty-two containers of carpets and furniture followed, and, of course, his foreign accounts remained mostly intact. Ensconced in a glittering palace in Jeddah, he is described as looking “corpulent” amidst “opulent” surroundings. Reportedly, he and Benazir Bhutto even have an occasional telephone conversation, perhaps together lamenting how unfair life has become.
The Pakistani military controls some of the largest business conglomerates in the nation and has monopolies in several areas of production and services. As chief of the army, Musharraf heads a vast empire of industrial, commercial, and real estate interests worth an estimated $5 billion. A principal function of these businesses is to serve as a private piggy bank for the privileged military hierarchy.
Four foundations, originally created to provide welfare for retired soldiers, are now bloated enterprises employing tens of thousands and generating hundreds of millions in annual revenues. The largest is Fauji Foundation, fauji meaning “military.” Each of the armed services has its own individual foundation: Army Welfare Trust, under Army GHQ; Bahria Foundation, under Navy HQ, and Shaheen Foundation, under Air Force HQ. The vast scope of these foundation holdings can be seen in the range of their subsidiary operations, as shown in table 3.5.
Pakistani Military Foundation Holdings
Fauji Cereal, Fauji Poly Propylene Products, Fauji Sugar Mills, Fauji Oil Terminal, Fauji Cement, Fauji Corn Complex, Fauji Kabirwala Power Company, FONGAS, Fauji Jordan Company, Fauji Fertilizer Company, Mari Gas Company
Army Welfare Trust
Army Welfare Sugar Mill, Askari Housing Scheme, Army Welfare Shoe Project, Askari Welfare Rice Mill, Army Welfare Woolen Mill, Askari Welfare Pharmaceutical Project, Army Welfare Hoisery Unit, Askari Stud farms, Askari Commerical Bank, Askari Fish Farm, Askari Commerical Enterprises, Askari Welfare Saving Scheme, Askari Power Limited, Askari Associate Limited, Askari Information Service, Askari Leasing Magnesite Refineries Limited, Askari Aviation
Bahria Construction, Bahria Bakery, Bahria Holdings, Bahria Catering and Decoration, Bahria Dredging, Bahria Security and Systems Services, Bahria Coastal Services, Bahria Travel and Recruiting Agency, Bahria Diving and Salvage, Bahria Complexes, Bahria Shipping, Bahris Town and Housing Schemes, Bahria Ship Breaking, Bahria Farming, Bahria Harbor Services, Bahria University, Bahria Deep Sea Fishing, Falah Trading Agency, Bahria Paints
Shaheen Airport Services, FM-100 radio channel, Shaheen AirCargo, Shaheen Knitwear, Shaheen Air International, Shaheen System, Shaheen Aerotraders, Shaheen Complex
As for the rest of the commanding heights of the economy, what the military does not own it controls. Active or retired officers have recently or still now head the National Highway Authority, the water and power agency, the tax collection agency, Karachi Electric Supply, the Employees Old Age Benefit Institution, the Federal Public Services Commission, The National Accountability Board, and much more. Musharraf reportedly has appointed some 500 officers to positions as chairmen, directors, agency heads and commissioners, permeating every aspect of the economy. You cannot turn around in Pakistan without putting money into service coffers. With what is almost certainly the largest holdings on the Karachi Stock Exchange and vast holdings outside the exchange, the military owns, controls and directs the economy of the country and is not about to give it up.
And what do rich general do with their money? Why, they take it off shore, just like rich politicians and rich business people. Court papers have listed innumerable generals, other officers, and their family members with substantial foreign bank accounts. This is part of the reason why Nawaz Sharif was allowed to go into exile in Saudi Arabia; he knew their foreign holdings well.
Pakistan’s pursuit and attainment of nuclear weapons and transfer of bomb-building components provides a frightening example of the many failings of the Pakistani state. A.Q. Khan stole centrifuge blueprints in Europe and then returned home to build a secret nuclear lab near Islamabad, supported by the notorious BCCI. According to a thorough New York Times report, Dr. Khan boasted, “My long stay in Europe and intimate knowledge of various countries and their manufacturing firms was an asset.”
Business executives and merchants, including German, Dutch and French middleman, flocked to
Pakistan to offer price lists for high technology goods and learn what Pakistan needed. The multilingual Dr. Khan led the acquisition effort. His shopping spree spanned the world. “Africa was important because of the materials needed… Europe was crucial for bringing high tech machines and components. Dubai was the place for shipments and payments.”
When Khan purchased components from his willing suppliers, he bought much more than needed by Pakistan alone, apparently with the early intent of selling nuclear materials to other countries. By the late 1980s he was supplying Iran, by 1991 North Korea, and at least as early as 1997 was in negotiations with Libya. The Libyan deal leaked, caused international uproar, and Khan was forced out of the lab bearing his name. He made a public confession and was immediately pardoned by Musharraf and allowed to keep the millions in property and cash he has accumulated in Pakistan and abroad. Reports suggest that his daughter hastened out of the country with documents and a videotape in which Khan claims that “all the chiefs of army staff since 1977, including Musharraf, were aware of his actions.”
The bottom line on Pakistan is that ruling elites were and continue to be thoroughly corrupted, and western business and banking sectors have in the past and continue today to service their corruption. Billions of dollars have been siphoned abroad, millions of people are deprived and uneducated, drugs move freely, terrorism finds accommodation, and nuclear sales threaten global stability.
Capitalism’s Achilles Heel by Raymond W. Baker
Nice to have you back. The masses deserve such leadership as clearly spelled out in the article. There is a authentic Hadith that also says that corrupt and tyrant rulers will be thrust on the nation if it behaves againt the teaching of Islam.
"There is a authentic Hadith that also says that corrupt and tyrant rulers will be thrust on the nation if it behaves againt the teaching of Islam. "
Like a group of so-called muslims who is behaving against the teachings of Islam by calling another group of as "Kafir" and killing them just because of their belief.
This probably happens in all developing countries but the amount of money stolen from Pakistan is staggering.
The sad thing is that this illicit money comes back to Pakistan in the form of World Bank and IMF loans and we have to pay more in taxes than the principal.
This is a vicious cycle meant to keep developing countries in poverty.
Western banks and countries are also complicit in this crime.
People still like their Army...why burn blood over this.
Thanks, AR, Hello everyone. By now everyone must have heard of this book, I imagine. Some might even have read it. So welcome one and all to Corruption Paradise Pakistan.
AR, you seem to suggest the masses deserve their kleptocratic leadership. We saw a section of these masses at the recent Islamabad dharna. Whatever might or might not have been going on behind the bulletproof stage, these people were heartbreaking to watch. Or was I the only one touched to the core? They are the big losers in this story and have always been. If a class villain, then shouldn't it be the middle-class instead?
Then Islam today, as Sipahi points out, has turned into a jumble of sectarianism and confused ritual. Are we not headed in the wholly wrong direction?
Zia M, hi. Excellent remark. Our own money is loaned back to us with interest by the west. Genuine genius in ill-doing is what one sees there. Time for all of us to wake up and go down a different path, wouldn't you say?
Yahya, Sure we like our army, what else can we do? But people within that aAugust institution must also slowly be getting fed up.
Well tomorrow is another day. And by then perhaps we'll have finally learnt our lesson. See you at the polls, Friends, see you at the polls.
Well tomorrow is another day. And by then perhaps we'll have finally learnt our lesson. See you at the polls, Friends, see you at the polls
Does that mean that you will re-visot the Board only at Polls?
I meant to say we end up paying more in interest than the prinicipal.
Thanks for your enlightening post.Please do not stay away for so long.
This post is deleted!
Let me use a line from Pakistani rulers, "Why are you paranoid of my corruption, they did it too"
Size of Pakistan economy: 510 Billion
Money stolen to abroad: 100 Billion
Ratio of loot to produce: 19%
Size of Indian economy: 4500 Billion
Money stolen to abroad: 1500 Billion
Ratio of loot to produce: 33%
By the neighborhood standard will still have room to grow.
Indian leadership must be doing something right, at least they are not begging for foreign aid and loans like us.Maybe, Indian politicians keep their loot within their country.
Still, people in India are also protesting against corruption.
1. Where from, Pakistan got that much wealth what helped to create so many Rich Politicians and Military Generals, where the infra structure is almost the same as leftover by the British Government in 1947.
2. ----And why such propaganda or Yellow Journalism, is not making any positive change at the Public Opinion?
A 438 page book published in 2005 which discusses the weaknesses of Capitalism and Free Market System and as example lists instances of corruption from 60 countries based on newspaper allegations, has suddenly become an authentic account of "corruption" in Pakistan in the eyes of some supposedly educated people.
Just proves yet again that 'Common sense is not that common."
If they are allegations, why hasn't NS sue the F out of the writer, editor and publisher? Just like sin of soil has taken money from ISI to form his first government and never denied or took that Banker to the court.
Had Mr Baker not mentioned the name of His Holiness Nawaz Sharif, it would have been fine with Adonis (deity).
Makes perfect sense!
Morale of story is if a book is published in 2005 and highlights corruptions of sharifs which apparently has not been contested, hence referencing it questions once's commonsense.
میں یہ نہیں کہتا کہ پاکستان میں کرپشن نہیں ہوتی لیکن میرے خیال میں کرپشن اسٹیبلشمنٹ کے ہاتھوں میں ایک ایسی تلوار ہے جس سے کئی جمہوری حکومتیں ذبح کی جاچکی ہیں۔۔۔۔۔۔
اور ہوتا یہی ہے کہ نناوے دانے تک لوگ کرپشن کرپشن کی تسبیح پڑھتے ہیں لیکن سو ویں دانے پر یہ صدا آتی ہے۔۔۔۔۔۔ میرے عزیز ہم وطنو۔۔۔۔۔۔
Thanks for proving my point, yet again.
Have any of you gentlemen bothered to read the actual book or your 'expertise' is limited to its excerpts published in Pakistan or its pdf summary circulating on the web?
The book is not focused on Pakistan but rather targets the shortcomings of Capitalism. Pakistan is one of about 60 countries which are mentioned as examples of such shortcomings and makes up a extremely miniscule portion of the book. He lists instances of alleged massive corruption in countries like india, Korea, UAE, Italy etc. It is funny that no one gave much importance to this book anywhere including Pakistan when it was published in 2005. But in Pakistan, it was suddenly brought in media last year as if some 'foreign expert' had suddenly discovered massive corruption of Pakistani politicians. "Intellectuals' like Hassan Nisar are now writing columns using this book as 'reference'.
The author does not directly accuse anyone of corruption. His whole narrative is based on previously published newspaper allegations and statements of political personalities against each other.
So if these newspaper allegations and political statements are correct, then why not cite these 'original' sources as proof of corruption of Pakistani politicians? Does using the name of an American author, who does not claim responsibility for any of these allegations but uses them as second-hand reference, somehow increases the authenticity of these allegations in the eyes of those who are quoting him?
Since you have read the book, please visit the reference section and list all of the newspaper references here. Thanks in advance.
Thanks but no thanks. I don't remember ever offering to be a guttenburg project volunteer.
It is those who are quoting this book in newspaper articles and reproducing excerpts on discussion forums who need to show some intellectual honesty and list the numerous sources that the author has cited as reference.