Tag Archives: Bhutto murder

Bhutto Party Will Contest Elections

Benazir Bhutto’s Pakistan Peoples Party announced that her husband, Asif Ali Zardari, would assume leadership of the party’s fight to gain victory in the upcoming election. Her 19 year old son Bilawai Bhutto Zardari, would be co-chairperson of the party although he will continue his studies at Oxford. PPP Vice Chairman Amin Fahim is expected to become the prime minister if they are successful in parliamentary elections and her husband made clear he would not assume any government leadership position. He claimed this succession was in Benazir Bhutto’s will but would not show the paper to reporters. Nawaz Shariff, head of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz, made clear he would abandon any talk of boycotting the election and join with the PPP in a coalition to gain power and challenge President Musharraf.

Ms. Bhutto’s husband insisted there were bullet wounds in his wife’s body despite claims by the government she had not been shot and had died due to the bomb blast which threw her body against the sunroof of the car. Prime Minister Gordon Brown of Great Britain urged President Musharraf to go ahead with the election and offered to send a Scotland Yard team to investigate the killing. At this point, it is imperative to get at the truth concerning how she died. Unless this becomes clear, rumors and anger will be present in a large part of the nation and people will continue blaming President Musharraf for the death. Many are already now terming his political party, “Killer’s League.” The UN might also provide assistance as it did in the Lebanon assassination case.

One tragedy that is apparent is apparent inability of the PPP to bring forth leaders not associated with the Bhutto family. The idea of a college student being co-chair of a political party reflects this failure.

Who Killed Bhutto? Where Does Musharraf Fit In Story?

President Bush immediately blamed Al-Qaeda or the Taliban or both for the murder of Benazir Bhutto. Words like “extremists” or “terrorists” are being cited for the murder of a leader who was challenging the regime of President Musharraf. However, in the streets of Pakistani cities, the cries are somewhat different as grieving followers of the fallen leader blame President Musharraf and the “agencies” of his government such as the Intelligence service. Yesterday, a leader of the Pakistan Muslim League-Q, which supports Musharraf, was blown up by a roadside bomb, undoubtedly by followers of Bhutto.

Lost in the anguish and confusion of the moment is the reality behind Benazir Bhutto who is being transformed into a fallen martyr. In a story published in the London Review of Books, Tariq Ali pointed out that Benazir’s own brother, Murtaza, who demanded a return to the original secular values of the Pakistan People’s Party, was murdered by police while she was prime minister of the nation. When Benazir’s niece called and asked why witnesses rather than the murderers were being arrested, her aunt replied: “Look,you’re very young. You don’t understand things.”

Over all the confusion and anger and hatred and fear that is now taking place in Pakistan hovers the shocking power of Pakistan’s ISI, the Inter Service Intelligence. Daniel Pearl, who was murdered by extremists, made his appointment with the militants while sitting in an office of an ISI commander’s office. Pakistani analysts are arguing as to whether or not the murder occurred due to al-Qaeda-Taliban elements or whether the murder was planned in the offices of the ISI. At this point, no one knows. Shortly before she returned to Pakistan, the Daily Times of Pakistan reported a statement by al-Qaeda leader, Baitullah, in which he claimed to have trained hundreds of suicide bombers to kill her. In all honesty, it is doubtful if ay truth will emerge in the coming months about her death. In the meantime, Bush and Musharraf claim it was the work of al-Qaeda, but to the people now raging through the streets of Pakistan, it was planned and executed by agencies in the Musharraf government.