“Daughter of Pakistan” Benazir Bhutto, 54, Killed by Gunshots and Suicide Bomber

Al Jazeera English BREAKING NEWS feature on the life and times of Benazir Bhutto

Benazir Bhutto, 54, who grew up in the violent and turbulent world of Pakistani politics and became the country’s and the Muslim world’s first female prime leader, was killed Thursday by a combination of gunshots and suicide bombing at a political rally in Rawalpindi. She was shot in the neck and chest as she stood through a sunroof of the armored SUV that was departing the rally. The city hosts the headquarters of the Pakistani Army and Air Force. Rawalpindi is also the former location of the headquarters of the Pakistani Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) — the largest and most powerful intelligence service in Pakistan. ISI is one of the three main branches of Pakistan’s intelligence agencies. Prior to the September 11, 2001 attacks, the ISI was supportive of the Taliban. The ISI has been accused of involvement in the September 11 attacks, terrorism in Kashmir, and other terrorist activities. After the September 11 attacks, the ISI was publicly supportive of America in the Global War on Terror and officially worked with America against Al-Quaeda and against Taliban militants. Several generals in the ISI were removed immediately following September 11. A Bhutto email to Mark Siegel, a Washington lobbyist and second cousin of Benazir Bhutto, mentioned the people who would be responsible for her death. The list included President Pervez Musharraf and high-ranking ISI personnel. Benazir Bhutto also faced resistance when she requested permission to obtain or use security measures (radio jamming equipment, cars with tinted windows, police escort on all four sides of entourage).

Bhutto interview with David Frost on Frost Over the World Al Jazeera English network, discussing the purpose of her return prior to October 18, 2007.

After self-imposed exile in London for much of the past decade. Benazir Bhutto returned home this fall, billing herself as a bulwark against Islamic extremism and a leader of democracy.


View Larger Map of Rawalpindi

During her return to Pakistan on October 18, 2007 (just after the month of Muslim fasting) there was a failed attempt on her life, but at least 134 of her supporters were killed and 400 injured when her triumphal return parade was bombed in Karachi. Bhutto chose Karachi because that’s where the founder of Pakistan is buried.


Frost Over the World interview with Benazir Bhutto on June 1, 2007.

Opposing Views from the comment section of Frost Over the World

Anti-Bhutto (30 days prior to her death) …
David, why is it good news dropping the corruption cases, she looted the poor people and the west campaigns for her election, I am sure you wont tolerate this in your country, she is a corrupt women and notoriously known as Mrs 10%. Her education, waste of time & money and her majors corruption and lying on your face. She is a shame to democracy, Pakistan and her father and one of the reason,we would say no to Democracy in Pakistan

Pro-Bhutto (5 days before her death) …
Benazir Bhutto is a beautiful flower of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto’s Garden. Pakistan Loves Benazir Bhutto.The Nation Loves Benazir Bhutto.

Benazir Bhutto has Sacrificed her beloved but never left the love of Pakistan.

Benazir Bhutto!
we love you from the deepest part of our hearts at every cost.

we reject propagandas of enemies of pakistan against you.
we will continue to love yo

Benazir Bhutto is a beautiful flower of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto’s Garden. Pakistan Loves Benazir Bhutto.The Nation Loves Benazir Bhutto.

Benazir Bhutto has Sacrificed her beloved but never left the love of Pakistan.

Benazir Bhutto!
we love you from the deepest part of our hearts at every cost.

we reject propagandas of enemies of pakistan against you.
we will continue to love yo

The ‘Day After’ Response
U.S. politicians are jockeying for position as to who is the best qualified to respond to world terror and foreign policy. Many presidential candidates touting their experience in world affairs and quoted saying they knew Bhutto well. News media response points to global threat of terrorism as the major issue facing the United States — an issue that diminishes the importance of other issues by comparison.

The other major concern and discussion is whether the Bhutto’s murder ultimately helps or hurts the cause of terrorists.

Speculation that Al-Qaeda is involved in Bhutto’s murder, but that the tactics are not characteristic of Al-Qaeda.

Lack of confidence in Pakistan security or even integrity regarding President Pervez Musharraf and high-ranking ISI personnel “protection” of Benazir Bhutto.

Many deaths (including police officers) in riots following Benazir Bhutto’s assassination.

Violence puts Pakistan and Afghanistan in crisis. Talk of civil war threat in a country with 60 or more nuclear warheads.