Friday, February 08, 2008
Scotland Yard: Bhutto killed by bomb, not bullet
What with the upcoming elections in Pakistan on Feb. 18th the time honored institution has came up with an astounding conclusion for the Bhutto murder investigation. Who's to say that there is a cover-up going on when the reputation of people like Sherlock Holmes is on the line?
Benazir Bhutto at the moment of Death
Bhutto report stirs political hornets' nest
British detectives have earned little gratitude in Pakistan for their report into the death of Benazir Bhutto, writes Declan Walsh
Declan Walsh in Lahore
Friday February 8, 2008
Today's keenly awaited Scotland Yard report casts some clarity on the manner of Benazir Bhutto's death but does nothing to answer the more essential question: who ordered the assassination?
The narrowness of the British findings come as no surprise: under the terms of reference agreed by both governments the detectives were working in an investigative straitjacket.
And as they fly home in the coming days the British detectives may find their toil has earned them little gratitude in Pakistan and has instead stirred a political hornets' nest in which they stand accused of lending credibility to a controversial investigation.
The recriminations erupted within minutes of the publication of the report when Bhutto's party issued an immediate rejection. Their leader died from a bullet, a spokesman said, and not a bomb blast as the British detectives claimed.
The controversy injects a fresh element into a political arena already pumped with trauma after Bhutto's death, anger at Musharraf, and a generous dose of conspiracy theories.
"This report does little else other than compromise the credibility of Scotland Yard," said Ali Dayan Hasan of Human Rights Watch.
Fear grips Pakistan as election approaches
CNN February 7, 2008
The parliamentary elections in Pakistan are scheduled for February 18, less than two weeks away. But attendance at rallies has plummeted. People openly admit fear is keeping then from participating. And politicians voice concern about their own safety.
"It is of paramount importance that the political leadership is sensitized about the looming threat and asked to adopt a security conscious approach," said Brigadier Javed Iqbal Cheema, the spokesman for the Interior Ministry.
His advice to political leaders: Avoid unnecessary public exposure.
Since Bhutto's death, political leaders have heeded the suggestion, albeit reluctantly.
Rallies and marches that normally draw tens of thousands of supporters -- once a staple of Pakistani politics -- have all but disappeared.
In this climate, voters turn to Pakistan's media to fill the void. But freedom of expression has become another casualty of the permeating fear.
"Anything seen to be critical of the government [is] likely to land the channel in trouble," said Talat Hussein, an anchor for private television channel Aaj TV.
Aaj and other stations were yanked off the air when President Pervez Musharraf imposed emergency rule last year. The government later allowed them to resume broadcast but only after they agreed to a mandatory code of conduct. Among other stipulations, the stations are now banned from live broadcasts -- political or not.
Late Wednesday, Hussein's show was again indefinitely pulled off the air after it aired a segment on Bhutto's assassination.
Bu$h & Bu$h Lite on video one month ago...