Thursday, October 18, 2007

Pakistan Politics: Bhutto Bombed

Good news:
Benazir Bhutto, former Prime Minister of Pakistan, is alive.

Bad news:
Over a hundred people in Karachi, Pakistan, aren't.

Bhutto was on her way make a speech at the tomb of Pakistan's founding father. About 150,000 of her supporters were on hand, near her convoy. She had returned to Pakistan today.

In 1988, Bhutto became the first woman to lead a post-colonial-era Muslim state. She was booted out of office on corruption charges, re-elected in 1993, and booted out again in 1996 on - what a surprise - corruption charges. She's been living in Dubai since 1999.

I don't know whether there's anything to the corruption charges, or if it's part of the Stans' culture: a sort of post-election mudslinging.

Bhutto isn't exactly the Taliban's ideal of femininity. She studied Philosophy, Politics, and Economics at the University of Oxford, has an additional degree from Harvard University, doesn't wear a burqa, and led a Muslim country.


Going on three times, if she runs in the next Pakistani election, and wins: both of which seem likely.

Back-to-the-seventh-century Muslims have many reasons to be infuriated with Bhutto. In this woman we have a woman who is:
  • Educated
  • Doesn't wear a burqa
  • Has run a country
  • Supports the war on terror
The Taliban, AL Qaeda, and like-minded Islamic fanatics will be solidly against Bhutto. That's as close to certain as things get in this world.

Parts of the press and academia in America have a tough decision now: Is Bhutto
  • A brilliant woman, fighting oppression
  • corrupt puppet of a militaristic American administration
Maybe I'm being unfair.

In any event, I like to think that Bhutto's popularity - and Musharraf's apparent efforts to team up with Bhutto because of her popular support - show that the people of Islamic countries are ready to accept an alternative to jihadist leaders.

Related posts, on Individuals and the War on Terror.

Posts about Benazir Bhutto.

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Note! Although I believe that these websites and blogs are useful resources for understanding the War on Terror, I do not necessarily agree with their opinions. 1 1 Given a recent misunderstanding of the phrase "useful resources," a clarification: I do not limit my reading to resources which support my views, or even to those which appear to be accurate. Reading opinions contrary to what I believed has been very useful at times: sometimes verifying my previous assumptions, sometimes encouraging me to change them.

Even resources which, in my opinion, are simply inaccurate are sometimes useful: these can give valuable insights into why some people or groups believe what they do.

In short, It is my opinion that some of the resources in this blogroll are neither accurate, nor unbiased. I do, however, believe that they are useful in understanding the War on Terror, the many versions of Islam, terrorism, and related topics.