n Ghani Jafar We had in our previous column in TheNation (Pakistan at war - the external flank, June 14) taken a look at the broad contours of the unilateral, undeclared war that has been waged on Pakistan since the reported death of Osama bin Laden on May 2. It had also been pointed out that the offensive on this country is multidimensional, and the previous write-up had taken a look at its external flank. Now, the obvious dimension of the internal war in Pakistan is the daily death toll, on both sides, of the countrys security forces personnel together with innocent children, women and men; and the faceless terrorists, who are conveniently clubbed together as belonging to the notorious Al-Qaeda network, not to forget the so-called Taliban of course. However, the real battle is for the soul of the nation. The Americans - apt as they are at coining ever new phraseologies to insinuate their desired connotations to concepts, ideas, the mindsets of humanity at large in the global village that they have crafted out of the debris of the bipolar world three decades ago - have attempted to give a half clever twist to what was once known as propaganda pure and simple. They now call it 'strategic communication, a discipline accorded legitimacy through its admittance as an academic subject to be employed for the achievement of what President George Bush famously described the predominance of 'American values in the world subsequent to 9/11. To that end, the US has allocated $50 million this year to buy and utilise as many media channels, print and electronic, 'journalists, 'academics, the flourishing breed of 'civil society armchair warriors, human rights activists, et al, as can dance to Uncle Sams tune in Pakistan. Starting with the Raymond Davis (if that was his real name) incident of late January this year - when CIA was caught with its pants down in a busy Lahore locality - this tribe has apparently been told that it is payback time; and paying back they are day and night to haunt the nation and make it lose hope in the states viability. The onslaught has become so pervasive that, barring some honourable exceptions, the electronic media space of Pakistan is becoming their Masters Voice. A la CNN and Fox News, they have employed half-literate, attractive young females to keep male viewers glued to the screens. Then there is the corporate US media that is treated as a most reliable source of 'information by many of the Pakistani media outlets. If the New York Times, for instance, has published a 'news story, it is disseminated as the gospel truth in Pakistan by this local tribe. Talking of this mother of the US strategic communicators, I must confess being taken aback when a senior journalist in the New York Times editorial department had; in anticipation of my question regarding the dailys linkage with the powerful Jewish lobby, for I was then visiting America (in 1991) as the Executive Editor of dear departed The Muslim in Islamabad; volunteered to confide that, yes, they did advance the cause of the Shylocks in the City of Gold. In the current internal war on Pakistan, special focus remains understandably on the nations defence forces. It goes without saying that you demoralise a countrys defence force, and the enemy has already won the war. There have over the previous few weeks been these 'reports emanating from the New York Times, again, of there being the imminent prospect of a mutiny by the Punjabi backbone of Pakistan military, followed by that regarding a colonels coup that was just around the corner. The premier intelligence agency of Pakistan, the Inter Services Intelligence (ISI), has been consistently portrayed as the biggest enemy of the state and the nation. On May 29, a senior and respected journalist, Saleem Shahzad, went missing in Islamabad. Fingers were instantly pointed at the ISI without the slightest clue as to who had picked him up, where, how - or other 'unnecessary details. Thats exactly how the almighty CNN had been brought into play on that fateful morning in Washington when the first 'hijacked plane had hit the World Trade Centre Twin Towers on 9/11. As soon as the initial footage of the still far from clear episode was shown on screen, the anchor stated most authoritatively that Al-Qaeda and Osama bin Laden sitting somewhere in the caves of Afghanistan were the terrorists who were responsible for the heinous act. That set the stage for the launch of the US-led 'global war on terror. In the present instance, the line about the ISIs culpability for the sad demise of Saleem Shahzad, and no prizes for guessing where it had come from, was soon to become the unquestionable truth. Anybody daring to challenge the premise was instantly dubbed by our media terrorists an agent of everything vile on earth. Actually, this term of 'media terrorism is not mine. To the best of my knowledge, it was first used by an Iranian official in October 2009 when, subsequent to a meeting between that country and the so-called group of P5+1 - the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council; Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States plus Germany - in Geneva, the Western corporate media had taken it upon itself to spread the lie that a 'deal on Tehrans nuclear programme had been reached by the interlocutors. An official of the Iranian nuclear agency in Tehran had, in response to a question about the purported 'deal, had utilised the term 'media terrorists to describe those, primarily at the New York Times, whose ever fertile minds had taken the lead in publishing the 'news that the deal, that never was, had in fact been struck. The purpose? To 'prove later how the Iranians always go back on their international commitments. Anyway, going back to 9/11 and its scheme of things, President Bush had wasted little time after the establishment of the 'fact, by who else but the CNN, that the 'terrorist happenings of the day were the handiwork of a little known network of Al-Qaeda, to announce the start of the global 'crusade [his words] that now must be wrapped up because, among other things, Uncle Sam has gone broke. Osama may well have been quick in condemning the 9/11 happpenings, but who was listening? Ten years later, Americas lackeys in Pakistan are not listening to anything that Uncle Sam may not like to hear. n The writer is a senior journalist currently working as project consultant/editor at the Institute of Strategic Studies (ISSI). The views expressed in this column are his alone. Email: ghanijafar@yahoo.co.uk