This blog’s post title serves two purposes. It is 10 days after the murder and funeral of Benazir Bhutto and nothing really has been done to correct this terrible miscarriage of justice.
Our local paper has managed to carry an article by one of Benazir’s college buddies. He talks of his association and her excellent social networking skills. His intent about his privy knowledge of these skills; to show her as constantly on Washington’s doorstep, begs the reader to ask friend or foe? If one googles President Musharraf each link has Washington as the main ingredient. Many articles in this past year where Washington is the broker between Benazir and Musharraf and why? They wanted to broaden Musharraf’s base? What does that mean? Benazir is one of the best minds, yet she accepts this?
The local paper also carries a distorted cartoon of Benazir and a Kashmiri’s venting. The Kashmiri had written a book and has the token, privileged, educational credentials.
One must ask, is it the intent of our local paper to bring Benazir Bhutto’s memory down?
The history of Kashmir disputes with India and Pakistan are long. Benazir is just a small piece of that history. The opinion carries that Benazir created the Taliban and supported them. First off, CIA and American Congressmen alone bear credit for that 1980s cold war project. The first militarization of the Taliban occurred in 1994. In the David Frost interview Benazir spoke of how the Taliban were welcome when they protected Pakistani borders. Her fight is with their terrorizaton of interior Pakistan. One asks who allows and invites these Taliban terror activities, now, today and yesterday in Pakistan. Clearly it was not Benazir Bhutto.
Benazir Bhutto never served a full term. At the age of 26 (born 1953) she was imprisoned by Zia’s dictatorship for six years (beginning 1979); 1984 she returned to U.K. Her first term was two years (1988-1990) and her second term was three years (1993-1996). At best she had two years to militarize the Taliban and send them off on their missions. Do you find that possible, believable that she alone was responsible?
Most of her time was spent talking to Washington and dealing with her opposition. Remarkably she was able to insert some rights for women and establish some national and modern reforms for her country, in particular, technological education. Generations have passed since her father’s time, yet each time Benazir ran for office she received the plurality, the majority of the population’s support. In each election she was not in control of the government or their election machines. At the time of her death she was involved in providing the proof that Musharraf’s government was rigging the elections. And surely it is of some import that elections have been postponed for one month. It is Musharraf who has served more than the legal term for a President and he has stated so many times that he is there for life, that there will be no elections with the opposition. At this very moment, today, he continues to carry Washington’s backing and support.
Despite all her problems in governing her country as the first democratic and woman leader of a Muslim nation, Benazir Bhutto spoke about her reflections on past service to her country a few months before she was murdered in Rawalpindi, Pakistan on December 27, 2007:
“The people wanted me to be there as a woman leader…. I wish I had focused more on that than on the more militaristic notions.” —Benazir Bhutto, August 2007 to the Council on Foreign Relations
President Musharraf’s excuses for not looking into Benazir’s death continue to bear the Rawalpindi stamp. How can a reasonable government rationalize that other people were not hurt in the van that carried Benazir, she therefore died because she stood in the vehicle’s sunroof ? If Benazir had not stood in the sunroof of her van would the sniper just have fired in the van and indeed, all would have been hurt?
President Musharraf’s continued posturing and postulations on Benazir Bhutto’s death, that she was killed by gunmen, leave him with his partners, as the suspect. His illogic continues in the answer that the crime scene was immediately erased because of the needs of traffic. Does that make sense in any country, in any context, especially one that claims over 100 intelligence and military officers were protecting Benazir Bhutto? This protection is not visible in the images or videos of the crime scene. The picture with the rifle circled, looks most amateurishly photo shopped. There is a great lack of continuity in the picture, as well as his story.
Since the Broker encouraged Benazir’s return to Pakistan weren’t they obliged to provide her some protection; especially when she sought it?
When you watch our presidential ’08 candidate Obama in the Iowa caucus; the secret service men are right in his face, to their side, to their back, a 4-corner protection. We do not see this kind of protection anywhere in the pictures or videos of Benazir in her last hour.
Benazir was a woman who super passed the power of her father’s legacy, she opened her mind wide open in foreign and national affairs. This is no small thing as her father was the first to liberate the People of Pakistan, the first to make it an Islamic nation, geographically in the middle of a Cold War. She was Western educated but she went beyond that problem in her intelligence. People write that she was corrupt. Yet she never faced a court for that condemnation. Even her husband was never convicted of corruption, though he served time in Pakistan’s jail. The Swiss accounts never entered prosecution.
Does Benazir in death suffer from gender discrimination?
And as women, at least, will we allow the Powers to tread unjustly on Benazir’s grave? Will we insist upon a true investigation and that Musharraf must immediately step down as the leader of Pakistan?
Please remember JFK’s assassination. He too was told to not open the top of his parading vehicle but he knew, as did Benazir, that their power was in their openness to the people. Remember how the investigation of his assassination was carried out and then compare it with that which is not being carried out for Benazir Bhutto.