Mansoor Ijaz – The memogate controversy

Mansoor Ijaz – The memogate controversy

Events in Pakistan have recently taken a twist after a controversial memo appeared said to be drafted by Pakistani Ambassador to the USA Hussain Haqqani. The memo was ousted by an American Business Man of Pakistani descent Mansoor Ijaz. The memo is said to have the approval of President Zardari as well.

Ever since the memo came to the light Mr Haqqani has handed over his resignation and President Zardari seems to have fled to Dubai under the pretence of medical checkups. According to some sources it could be weeks before President Zardari returns while others believe he could resign over health issues.

The central player in all this controversy seems to Mansoor Ijaz who ousted the memo, Ijaz was born in Tallahassee, Florida in 1961 to highly educated parents. His father Dr Mujadid Ijaz was theoretical physicist and played a major role in the development of Pakistan’s Nuclear Porgram, He was also a close friend of Dr Abdus Salam the Noble prize winning Pakistani scientist. Ijaz’s family belonged to the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community a tolerant branch of Islam whose believers are considered heretics by the mainstream Muslims.

Spokesperson of Ahmadiyya Community Pakistan said although his family did belong to the Ahmadiyya Community, Mansoor Ijaz is not part of Jammat e Ahmadiyya and has no connection with it.

Mansoor attained a degree in nuclear physics from the University of Virginia and an MA in engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology but afterwards became a fund manager in the Wall Street. Ijaz had close ties with the Democratic Party and was very well connected politically.

An investment firm was setup by Ijaz in the 1990’s in which he was partner with retired Air Force Lt. General James Alan Abrahamson. While the former CIA director R. James Woolsey, was chairman of the board of Ijaz’s publicly listed company, Crescent Technology Ventures PLC, based in London

Ehsan Rehan

Ehsan Rehan

Ehsan is a Washington D.C. based reporter who covers Human Rights & Religious Freedom issues.
Ehsan Rehan



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3 thoughts on “Mansoor Ijaz – The memogate controversy

  1. It is my educated guess, based on the evidence available so far, that the military did not precipitate the memo crisis, but it certainly pounced on it with great glee once the existence of the memo had been revealed by Mansoor Ijaz’s oped in the Financial Times. It is also my strong hunch that the only reason Mansoor Ijaz did what he did was initially a banal hunger for the limelight, a desire to be seen as a ‘player’ in international politics. He has always harbored great ambitions to be seen as such, as well as deep-rooted resentment that his alleged earlier forays into Sudan and Kashmir had not provided him the importance he felt he deserved. Before his FT piece, no one knew even of the existence of the memo or perceived any notable shift in US policy because of it. His subsequent posturing was precipitated by a sense that he was once again being belittled and mocked.