Thursday, December 27, 2007

Did Musharraf have Bhutto killed?

Before she was assassinated, former Pakistan Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto sent an e-mail message to her friend Mark Siegel, expressing fears for her safety, blaming the current Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf for the inadequate security he was providing her:

Just wanted u to know if it does in addition to the names in my letter to Musharaf of Oct 16nth, I wld hold Musharaf responsible. I have been made to feel insecure by his minions and there is no way what is happening in terms of stopping me from taking private cars or using tinted windows or giving jammers or four police mobiles to cover all sides cld happen without him.
As CNN reports:
Just before returning to Pakistan after eight years of self-imposed exile, Bhutto told CNN she was aware of threats against her and said that some had come from people who hold "high positions" in Pakistan's government. She said she had written a letter to Musharraf about her fears, apparently the same letter she refers to in her e-mail to Siegel.

In a speech, she listed four groups she believed posed the biggest threat to her and her cause -- the Taliban in Pakistan, the Taliban in Afghanistan, al Qaeda and a suicide team from Karachi that she did not describe.

After the October bombing, ... "She basically asked for all that was required for someone of the standing of a former prime minister," Siegel told CNN's "The Situation Room." "All of that was denied to her. ... She got some police protection, but it was sporadic and erratic."
Ironically, just yesterday, I had just forwarded lyrics from a Jackson Browne song that seemed particularly apt at this time of year:

Well we guard our world with locks and guns
And we guard our fine possessions
And once a year when Christmas comes
We give to our relations
And perhaps we give a little to the poor
If the generosity should seize us
But if any one of us should interfere
In the business of why there are poor
They get the same as the rebel Jesus
Bhutto was concerned enough about the plight of her fellow countrymen to willing risk her life for a chance to serve them. Only a handful of others have knowingly taken this risk. Those that come instantly to mind: John and Robert Kennedy, Martin Luther King, Mahatma Ghandi. I'm not comparing her politics to any of those people. But it's a rare person who knowingly walks into potentially fatal danger because it's the right thing to do, and such people are deserving of respect. Just twenty minutes before she was killed, she told a crowd, "I put my life in danger because this country is in danger."

I am waiting for the "official story" to be rammed down our throats. It was a lone suicide bomber. Or a small conspiracy of disaffected Muslims. We don't want to have to start calling a nuclear-armed Musharraf our enemy, so I expect to see Bush go through some contortions, condemning the act but not blaming Musharraf in any way. We'll see.

And in perhaps the ultimate irony, Sen. Arlen Specter, the author of the keystone to the John Kennedy assassination cover-up (the "magic bullet theory"), was to join Kennedy's nephew Rep. Patrick Kennedy at dinner with Musharraf the night Bhutto was killed. He had the gall to say, "It's a night reminiscent of Kennedy, Robert Kennedy's assassination." (I can't help but wonder if he couldn't bear to make the comparison to the John Kennedy assassination out of guilt for his actions in that case.)

As Robert Parry laments over at
Now, with Bhutto’s death and with unrest sweeping Pakistan, Bush’s Iraq War backers are sure to argue that these developments again prove the president right, that an even firmer hand is needed to combat terrorism and that the next president must be someone ready to press ahead with Bush’s concept of a “long war” against Islamic extremism.

But the reality again appears different. Though rarely mentioned in the American press, the evidence is that bin Laden and other extremists have cleverly played off Bush’s arrogance and belligerence to strengthen their strategic hand within the Muslim world.
So what happens now? The Daily Mail has a good suggestion, although I doubt it will be followed:
If her sacrifice is to mean anything, General Musharraf must use it to hasten the restoration of democracy.

This will not be easy in a country where the electorate is largely poor and ignorant, the ruling elite riddled with corruption, Islamist terror on the rise and the military jealous of its supreme power.

But Musharraf is used to walking a political tightrope. He is an artful diplomat and has been the West's staunchest ally in the War on Terror.

He should accept that the best hope of long-term stability is reform. Rapid movement towards civil rule must be his imperative - and Miss Bhutto's memorial.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for the article. I think this is a terrible event. It is time for people to say "enough" to all of this madness.

While searching on the net I have found another very good article about this, with a very informative historical perspective that adds more help to understand what happened:

You might want to read it here:

1:21 AM  

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