Former Prime Minister of Pakistan Benazir Bhutto is dead at the hands of a suicidal-assassin.
Responsibility has not yet been claimed but suspicion for Bhutto’s death will swiftly be put at the door of Islamist elements within the Pakistani military, particularly the ISI. In my humble opinion, cooperation between agents of ISI and al Qaida-Taliban terrorists in assassinating Bhutto should not be ruled out.
Bhutto was neither as democratic nor as pro-American as her P.R. in the MSM implied and her party’s endemic addiction to corruption helped bring the military to power on numerous occasions in Pakistan’s history. That being said, the death of Benazir Bhutto is a significant destabilizer for a nuclear club nation that perpetually teeters on the brink of state failure.
Some Bhutto posts by respected blogfriends and other pundits:
The NewsHoggers Thomas P.M. Barnett Soob tdaxp Sic Semper Tyrannis Wolf Pangloss
MountainRunner SWJ Blog New Yorker in DC Belmont Club Futurejacked The Glittering Eye
December 27th, 2007 at 5:14 pm
"Bhutto was neither as democratic nor as pro-American as her P.R. in the MSM implied and her party’s endemic addiction to corruption helped bring the military to power on numerous occasions in Pakistan’s history."
She certainly had courage but some of the reports I’ve been reading would have you thinking Mother Theresa had died again!
December 27th, 2007 at 5:20 pm
Agreed. Bhutto’s checkered past has been well documented. I suspect part of the reason for this phenomenon has to do with that old practice of not speaking ill of the dead.
I agree with you to a point that ISI or some rogue elements may have had something to do with this. Indeed, Bhutto complained at length of the "sham" investigation following the October attacks on her. Still, whether ISI or rogues had anything to do with this will not matter as a substantial number of Pakistanis, including Nawaz Sharif are already laying the blame at the feet of Musharraf.
December 27th, 2007 at 7:09 pm
In twenty years will people be asking how we could have been so stupid, getting bogged down in Iraq and Afghanistan, when "obviously" the disaster that was about to happen was in Pakistan?
December 27th, 2007 at 8:46 pm
Maybe, but I wouldn’t count the Paki military out quite yet.
December 27th, 2007 at 11:10 pm
Pakistan is an Army with a State – and it’s neither a very good army nor a very good state.
December 28th, 2007 at 12:49 am
Bhutto´s record on past governments may not have been the best. However, the fact that she came back despite death threats and that she also spoke openly against the terrorists and fundamentalist tell us some different about what she intended to do had she won the elections.Corruption is not a problem poor and unstable societies care much for, when confronted with violent terrorism and fundamentalism on one side, and with a dictatorship on the other.I somehow suspect the United States was hopeful, very hopeful she would win the elections, and this comes a huge set back for American interests in the region.
December 28th, 2007 at 2:46 am
An Army with a State indeed:
I … ?
Throw in Baluchistan there somewhere, you get Pakistan out of it somehow.
I think the key question is whether her supporters hate Musharraf enough to side with Sharif, or whether someone is able to succeed her out of her own party – maybe her husband?
December 28th, 2007 at 2:59 am
Bhutto’s husband, whose name escapes me, is part of Pakistan’s massive corruption problem. So was Sharif, if I recall correctly.
December 28th, 2007 at 3:59 am
A few questions and observations:
No conclusions. Just thinking out loud.
December 28th, 2007 at 10:46 pm
Indeed, Sharif was deposed by Musharraff easily due to his corruption.
That aside reason very popularly takes a backseat to fervor in times like these. As far as popular support goes (especially in light of the latest developments) my money’s on Sharif. As far as actual control of Pakistan is concerned if the military doesn’t step in with a coup I’d be surprised, especially given Sharif’s latest announcement boycotting the January elections.