Fareed Zakaria

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Fareed Zakarai

Fareed Zakaria (born 20 January 1964) is an Indian-born American journalist, author and television host specializing in world affairs. He is openly critical of the Tea Party Movement, and has been proven wrong multiple times on various economic issues.

Contents

Family life

Fareed Zakaria was born to a Muslim family involved with politics and journalism in India. His father was Rafiq Zakaria, a politician associated with the Indian National Congress and India's freedom movement. Rafiq Zakaria was also an Islamic scholar. Fareed Zakaria's mother, Fatima Zakaria, has worked as an editor of the Sunday edition of the Times of India. Fareed Zakaria lives in New York with his wife Paula Throckmorton Zakaria, a son Omar, and daughters Lila and Sofia.

Zakaria self-identifies as a Muslim but has stated "I occasionally find myself reluctant to be pulled into a world that's not mine, in the sense that I'm not a religious guy."[1] and it is known that Zakaria enjoys wine.[2]

Eduacation

Fareed Zakaira attended the private Anglican Cathedral and John Connon School located in Mumbai. He graduated Yale College and received a PhD in political science from Harvard University.

Journalism

Zakaria became managing editor of the prestigious magazine Foreign Affairs after working at a Harvard research project that was examining American foreign policy. In October 2000 Zakaria was named editor of Newsweek International. He writes a regular column for Newsweek, which also appears in Newsweek International and the Washington Post. Zakaria has worked as a columnist for the web publication Slate[3], where he wrote about wine, a passion of Zakaria's that has led him to claim that wine "is the perfect gift"[4]

Television

Zakaria has hosted or been in a number of TV shows, including:

  • Foreign Exchange with Fareed Zakaria (PBS)
  • was a news analyst on 'This Week with George Stephanopoulos (ABC 2000-2007)
  • Fareed Zakaria GPS(Global Public Square) (premiered CNN in June 2008).[5]

Author

Zakaria is also the author and/or co-editor of the following works:

  • The Post-American World, Fareed Zakaria, (W.W. Norton & Company; 2008) ISBN 0-393-06235-X
  • The Future of Freedom: Illiberal Democracy at Home and Abroad, Fareed Zakaria, (W.W. Norton & Company; 2003) ISBN 0-393-04764-4
  • From Wealth to Power, Fareed Zakaria, (Princeton University Press; 1998) ISBN 0-691-04496-1
  • The American Encounter: The United States and the Making of the Modern World Essays from 75 Years of Foreign Affairs, edited by James F. Hoge and Fareed Zakaria, (Basic Books; 1997) ISBN 0-465-00170-X

Political Views

Zakaria has had a wide variety of political views and identities. In the 1980s he was seen as being neoconservative who supported President Ronald Reagen, but currently identifies himself as being "centrist"[6], whilst Forbes, in 2009, referred to Zakaria as one of "The 25 Most Influential Liberals In The U.S. Media"[7]. Zakaria has also stated that he does not believe himself as being devoted to one idealogy as ""I feel that's part of my job... which is not to pick sides but to explain what I think is happening on the ground. I can't say, 'This is my team and I'm going to root for them no matter what they do.'"[8]

In The Future of Freedom, Zakaria puts forward the argument that democracy works best where "constitutional liberalism" already has a history. Zakaria points out that in history liberty tends to be a prelude to democracy and that countries that hold elections without first attempting to undertake a program of liberalization such as an increase in personal freedoms, rule of law and economic liberalization end up failing by becoming "illiberal democracies" such as Iran. As such Zakaria was critical of President George W. Bush's administrations drive to hold elections in the Middle-East without seeing that the building of institutions of law, governance and liberty in the same states needed the same vigour and zeal.[9]

Front Cover, Newsweek, 9th March

9-11

In regards to the 9/11 attacks Zakaria has argued that Islamic extremism was the product of stagnation and the non-development of society in many parts of the Arab world. At the heart of Zakaria'a argument is that much of the extremism common to Islamic terrorists was that their ideals grew in states that had experienced decades of tyrannical and corrupt rule that had been marketed to its people as being a Western-style secular government through the use of misinformation and propaganda. The response to such forms of government saw the growth of an opposition that was religious, violent and, with the rise of global communication and the internet, increasingly organised, and increasingly willing to overthrow governments and replace them with violent, repressive theocracies, or at least a form of government that had deep similarities to a theocracy. Zakaria has also argued in a cover essay for the 9th March edition of Newsweek that "The groups that advocate these policies are ugly, reactionary forces that will stunt their countries and bring dishonor to their religion. But not all these Islamists advocate global jihad, host terrorists or launch operations against the outside world — in fact, most do not. Consider, for example, the most difficult example, the Taliban. The Taliban have done all kinds of terrible things in Afghanistan. But so far, no Afghan Taliban has participated at any significant level in a global terrorist attack over the past 10 years — including 9/11. There are certainly elements of the Taliban that are closely associated with Al Qaeda. But the Taliban is large, and many factions have little connection to Osama bin Laden. Most Taliban want Islamic rule locally, not violent jihad globally.

How would you describe Faisal Ahmad Shinwari, a judge in Afghanistan? He has banned women from singing on television and called for an end to cable television altogether. He has spoken out against women and men being educated in the same schools at any age. He has upheld the death penalty for two journalists who were convicted of blasphemy. (Their crime: writing that Afghanistan’s turn toward Islam was “reactionary.”) Shinwari sounds like an Islamic militant, right? Actually, he was appointed chief justice of the Afghan Supreme Court after the American invasion, administered Hamid Karzai’s oath of office and remained in his position until three years ago."[10]

On Iraq

Initialy supporting the 2003 invasion of Iraq, Zakaria stated at the time, "The place is so dysfunctional... any stirring of the pot is good. America’s involvement in the region is for the good."[11]. Zakaria also argued for an operation sanctioned by the UN and using a force of 400 000 troops, a number that was higher than the number of troops actually deployed by the then administration. Zakaria also called for an international occupation force, similar to that of Kosova.

However, after the invasion Zakaria frequently criticized much of the occupation of Iraq[12], and opposed the strategy of an Iraq surge in March 2007, instead arguing that the number of troops in Iraq should be reduced to 60 000.[13]

During January 2009 Zakaria stated that the surge had "succeeded".[14]

Criticism

Amongst the criticism that Zakaris has received are:

  • In the piece "Fareed Zakaria, Spokesperson for the Global Elite", written for the Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting organization, Roger Bybee (member of the Wisconsin Citizen Action) wrote that Zakaria's "fervent embrace of the perspectives of the powerful keeps him in a state of denial regarding fundamental realities of the global economy."[15]
  • Eric Tyson, a noted personal finance expert and author cited in his newspaper column numerous flaws in the arguments that Zakaria put forward in a cover story for Newsweek in regard to the latteer stages of the financial crisis of 2008.[16]
  • President of the Pakistan Society of Criminology, Mr. Fasihuddin, criticized Zakaria in the article ""Fareed Zakaria on Terrorism" (which was published on the website of Pakistan Society of Criminology), alledging that Zakaria failed to base his article on any credible data and that Zakaria lacks adequate knowledge of NWFP (North-West Frontier Province) and the surrounding tribal areas. Mr. Fusihuddin states that Zakaria and his associates are "Scholars of the ivory towers of DC, NY, LA, PA or TX."[17]

External links

References

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