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Benazir Bhotto was not killed by the bomber.

  1. Dec 30, 2007 #1

    turbo

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    On the national news tonight was BBC footage from the rally clearly showing her hair and scarf being dislodged from the recoil of the (at least) 3 shots fired at her. She fell into her vehicle through the sunroof well before the bomb exploded. I would love to link the clip, but cannot seem to locate it. It should be hitting all the media by tomorrow.
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2007
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  3. Dec 30, 2007 #2

    arildno

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    Dearly Missed

    Well, her representative said she had a bullet wound in her head.

    Unfortunately, Islamic law prohibits autopsy, so this will remain an issue of symbolic quarrel.

    It was a tragedy, however it happend, exacerbated by idiotic sharia law prohibiting our means to determine the true cause of death
     
  4. Dec 30, 2007 #3

    turbo

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    PF denizens in the Western US time zones ought to be able to catch the clip on the national news, if the darned football games don't supersede the news. The video was shot from the rear right side of her vehicle and purports to show both the man with the gun and the bomber who followed him in through the crowd. The video released by the Pakistani government was shot from the left side of the vehicle and Bhutto's head was conveniently obscured from view when the attack started.
     
  5. Dec 30, 2007 #4

    Gokul43201

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    Pakistani law, if I'm not mistaken, actually requires autopsies be performed for all cases of murder - more reason to believe the hurried burial was politically driven. Apparently, it was the Rawalpindi police chief that turned down the autopsy requests.

    Now it seems the Government is actually offering to exhume the body to perform an autopsy.
     
  6. Dec 30, 2007 #5

    George Jones

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    http://www.cnn.com/2007/WORLD/asiapcf/12/30/pakistan.politics/index.html

    It looks to me like she was hit by at least one bullet.

    My only doubt comes from her bodyguard ducking before she moved, i.e., she might be ducking too.

    Still, I think the video shows that, unfortunately, a bullet found its mark.
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2007
  7. Dec 30, 2007 #6

    turbo

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    Thanks for the link, George. The clip on tonight's news was longer than the CNN clip and the shooter and the bomber were highlighted as they made their way through the crowd, as if the cameraman knew something was up. They slowed down the clip and you could clearly see her recoil from the impact of at least one of the slugs and drop into the vehicle well before the bomb exploded.

    It looks like the "official" version of her death is designed to play down the assassination angle (don't make a martyr out of her) and make it look like some radical loon blew himself up at the rally and she died accidentally. By this time tomorrow, the video will have made all the news media, and the Pakistani government's spin on this will be pretty thoroughly discredited.
     
  8. Dec 30, 2007 #7

    George Jones

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    Another network's take on the video. Clearly, her hair moves first, then she falls, then the bomb explodes.

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21134540/vp/22443738#22443738

     
  9. Dec 30, 2007 #8

    turbo

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    That's it, George - thanks! It was NBC's British affiliate, Channel 4, not the BBC. I was working at the computer, heard the vamp for the video and turned to watch the clip, and somehow assumed that it was a BBC feed. This clip will never get aired on Pakistani TV, but the Internet versions may turn the country very ugly in the next few days. A volatile time for a tinderbox of a region.
     
  10. Dec 31, 2007 #9

    robphy

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  11. Dec 31, 2007 #10
    What caused her death is the double attack with a gun and a bomb. A double attack is a good way to distribute legal responsibility and cause confusion while at the same time doubling your chances of success. Other than that, I fail to see the relevance of identifying the specifics of what did it: the first bullet, the bomb, the dive into the car, the second or third bullet ...a heart attack? What's relevant is that she was attacked by two assassins and died as a result. Deliciously detailed specifics should not matter.
     
  12. Dec 31, 2007 #11

    turbo

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    The difference in this case is that by claiming that the bomb blast got her or that she hit her head on her vehicle, the government can portray her as a victim of a more generalized suicide bombing attack directed at the crowd at the rally. By showing the assassin with the pistol AND the bomber, and showing that Bhutto slumped into her vehicle well before the bomb was detonated, the new video proves that there was an assassination conspiracy involving at least two men and that it was directed specifically at Bhutto.

    Which do you think would inflame Bhutto's supporters more?
    1. Bhutto fractured her skull by hitting her head on her vehicle as a result of the blast at the rally.
    2. Bhutto was shot in the head by an assassin with a pistol, whose accomplice then detonated a suicide bomb in a crowd of Bhutto supporters to create confusion and kill witnesses.

    The ever-evolving story from the Pakistani government (she was shot - she was hit by shrapnel - she died because she hit her head on her vehicle) is an attempt to defuse the "martyr complex" that may evolve around her. Regardless of how inept and corrupt she may have been in her administration of the Pakistani government, many Pakistanis will overlook that, blame Musharraf for her death and further destabilize the region, giving him another excuse to declare martial law and extend his rule. This is a very dangerous time for the region.
     
  13. Dec 31, 2007 #12
    That's not the most dangerous scenario... What if Musharraf were to lose control of his security forces?
     
  14. Dec 31, 2007 #13

    BobG

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    Wouldn't the most likely scenario involve him losing control to Gen. Ashfaq Kiyani? I'm not sure there would be a huge difference.
     
  15. Dec 31, 2007 #14
    It all depends on how violently power is transferred.
     
  16. Jan 15, 2008 #15
    Militant groups slip from Pakistan's control
    Few things are as dangerous as turned intelligence operatives, especially to a military dictatorship.
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2008
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