WASHINGTON: Hussain Haqqani, a US-based former Bhutto aide has said that he had spoken to Benazir two days ago and she was concerned about the security arrangement and the military government’s effort to rig the election. “They (the rulers) could have provided better security. Even the equipment they gave consistently malfunctioned. Bhutto had asked for independent security arrangements,” he told CNN.
Haqqani and other analysts like Peter Bergen also pointed out that the attack took place in Rawalpindi, the military garrison town outside Islamabad that is crawling with security personnel and spooks. The fact that she had been shot dead following up a suicide bombing pointed to a concerted effort to finish her off. Benazir Bhutto returned to Pakistan to participate in a carefully controlled election engineered covertly by the Bush administration and some key lawmakers who persuaded a reluctant General Musharraf to allow her back into the country.
Benazir’s price for her return was withdrawal of all corruption cases against her and a power-sharing arrangement with the military which would return her to the prime ministership for a third term. General Musharraf balked at the last condition and there was uncertainty how the arrangement would proceed. Bhutto knew full well there was danger to her life if she returned.
In a CNN interview, she spoke of the threats against her from dark forces who were opposed to a woman ruling the Islamic Republic. But she said “there are risks that need to be taken and I am prepared to take them.” “I know past has been tragic but I am optimistic by nature,” she said when reminded of the murder of her father by the Pakistani military. “I put my trust in the people of Pakistan and put my faith in God.”-SANA