On December 27, 2007, Benazir Bhutto, 11th and 13th Prime Minister of Pakistan, was assassinated. Almost immediately various “conspiracy theories” about the assassination appeared.
Thus reads the description for my latest video, “Remembering Benazir Bhutto”, published to YouTube on August 19, 2016. The clip, which clocks in at 9 minutes and 30 seconds, can hopefully be viewed at the top of today’s blog entry.
Benazir Bhutto, Prime Minister of Pakistan, was assassinated on December 27, 2007. The next day, Yossi Melman, Haaretz correspondent, reported, “Conspiracy theories abound over Benazir Bhutto slaying.” Pakistan was considered to be “one of the world’s most fertile breeding grounds for conspiracy theories”, and many of these were competing to explain the Prime Minister’s murder. There had been “negligence displayed by Bhutto’s security detail.” The assassin easily penetrated the perimeter of guards and then shot Bhutto with a pistol. He then detonated a bomb he was wearing so that authorities would later be unable to identify him and thus ascertain which organization he was working for. Harper’s Magazine agreed that the conspiracy theories were abundant regarding the killing of Benazir Bhutto. In “Who Killed Bhutto? Conspiracy Theories Already Thriving”, Ken Silverstein reported for Harpers on December 27th that “anything is possible at this point.” Cui bono? (Who will benefit?) asked Associated Press on or about December 28th. “On whose behalf did the suicidal assassin kill Bhutto, 20 others and himself? No one knew for certain.” President Pervez Musharraf was considering postponing upcoming elections, “a bitter irony, because Bhutto had returned from exile to run in that election against Musharraf, leader of a military government since a 1999 coup,” reported AP. In the United States, President Bush was already blaming the assassination on “murderous extremists who are trying to undermine Pakistan’s democracy.” Bhutto’s enraged supporters blamed Musharraf, chanting, “Killer, Killer, Musharraf!”
Thaindian News, a news portal for Indians in Thailand, had already dug deeper into the Benazir Bhutto assassination and was reporting on December 27, 2007 that Bhutto had been shot at and killed by at least two snipers before a suicide bomb attack on the periphery of her carcade. “Police confirmed that the snipers fired five bullets from AK-47 assault rifles. Two of the bullets hit Benazir in the neck, while a third hit her forehead. No one was near her car when the shots were fired at her,” reported Thaindian News. At a sidewalk barber’s shop, white-haired Mohamed Sharif, 61, confided, “the rumor is that America is involved in this with Musharraf’s help,” reported Time Magazine (online), in an article titled, “Bhutto Conspiracy Theories Fill the Air.” Reporting for Time Magazine on December 28, 2007, Simon Robinson added that a passerby at the sidewalk barber’s shop butted in to say, “America and the government are in the same direction, they are allies. If the government is doing this it is on the order of America.”
On or about December 29, 2007, Agence France Presse was reporting that Benazir Bhutto’s political party had rejected the official account of her death as “nonsense” and accused the government of a cover-up. In “Pakistan govt accused of covering up Bhutto killing”, AFP reported a bitter dispute had erupted over how the former premier died and who was to blame. The official story now was that Bhutto had bumped her head while trying to dodge bullets! “Leading democratic candidate Hillary Clinton called for an independent, international probe into Bhutto’s murder, saying Musharraf’s government had no credibility,” reported AFP.
The strange case of Benazir Bhutto got even stranger when, on December 28th Associated Press reported that CNN’s Wolf Blitzer had received an eerie e-mail from Bhutto shortly before her death. David Bauder, AP television writer, in a report titled, “Bhutto sent Blitzer security e-mail”, revealed that Bhutto had communicated to Blitzer complaining about her security. “Conditions of use: only if she were killed.” Bhutto wrote to Blitzer, “that if anything happened to her, ‘I would hold (Pakistani President Pervez) Musharraf responsible,'” reported AP.
On December 30, 2007, India Daily reported that it had been revealed that the Rawalpindi police chief had violated the Criminal Procedure Code by not allowing an autopsy on Benazir Bhutto. In “Conspiracy charges gather momentum after it is revealed that Rawalpindi police chief violated the Criminal Procedure Code by not allowing autopsy on Bhutto,” reporter Rita Nair informed readers, “Even though a medical-legal report based on a mandatory post-mortem examination is a must in a murder case under Pakistani laws, the establishment decided to instruct Rawalpindi police chief to block any such post mortem so that they can blame the murder on accident. The funniest thing happened finally. The Musharaff and his establishment blamed the whole thing on Benazir Bhuttos Sunroof latch.” This latch was supposed to have killed Bhutto when she bumped her head on it while dodging bullets.