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#NotHappy: Officials complain about Homeland’s portrayal of Pakistan as ‘Grimy Hellhole’

The makers of the Emmy Award-winning TV show ‘Homeland’ have been unapologetic in their portrayal of Pakistan during the show’s fourth season; particularly the long-suspected links between the country’s military and intelligence establishments and Islamist extremists.

In one storyline, the show’s writers even depicted a carefully coordinated attack on the US embassy in Islamabad, mounted by militants with the help of Pakistan’s notorious Inter Services Intelligence agency.

Pakistani officials, unsurprisingly, haven’t taken kindly to the show’s portrayal of their country.

Nadeem Hotiana, an official at the Pakistan Embassy in the US, told the New York Post: “Repeated insinuations that an intelligence agency of Pakistan is complicit in protecting the terrorists at the expense of innocent Pakistani civilians is not only absurd, but also an insult to the ultimate sacrifices of the thousands of Pakistani security personnel in the war against terrorism.”

“Maligning a country that has been a close partner and ally of the US . . . is a disservice not only to the security interests of the US but also to the people of the US,” Mr Hotiana added.

Hotiana also said that he wished Homeland producers would have “spent more time getting their facts right”. 

Another diplomat took offence at the show’s portrayal of Islamabad as a “grimy hellhole” and a “warzone”.

“Islamabad is a quiet, picturesque city with beautiful mountains and lush greenery,” the diplomat said.

The show has been shot largely in various locations in South Africa after producers failed to get permission to film in Pakistan. 

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