A lifetime in the diplomatic service of Pakistan gave Jamsheed Marker a unique vantage point—in cricket terms, he was at cover point, i.e. ‘near enough to the wicket to follow the action around the stumps…yet sufficiently distant for a general overview of the state of play’. This work relates the first-hand impressions of Mr Marker, which he garnered during his illustrious career, starting with Quaid-i-Azam M.A. Jinnah up until the rule of General Pervez Musharraf.
Jamsheed Marker was a distinguished veteran Pakistani diplomat from a well-known Parsee family of Quetta and Karachi. Born in 1922 at Hyderabad Deccan, India, he received his education from the Doon School, Dehradun and the Forman Christian College, Lahore. During the Second World War he served as an officer in the Royal Indian Naval Volunteer Reserve. When the war ended, Marker joined his family business. He served on the boards of several public and private corporations in banking, insurance, and shipping. In April 1965 Marker was appointed as high commissioner of Pakistan to Ghana. Over a 42-year diplomatic career, Mr Marker served as ambassador continuously in ten posts, including in the US (1986–1989) and at the UN (1990–1994). In 1986, as ambassador to the US, he helped negotiate the Soviet military withdrawal from Afghanistan. At the UN, he served as Chair, Security Council; Special Advisor to the Secretary General Kofi Annan; and Special Envoy to East Timor in 1999. He received the Sitara-i-Quaid-i-Azam and Hilal-i-Imtiaz from the Government of Pakistan; the Madarski Konnik from the Republic of Bulgaria; and the L'ordre national du Mérite (National Order of Merit) from the Republic of France. He died in 2018 at the age of 95.