* Engdahl: Bhutto’s Assassination: Who Gains?


Richard Moore

Original source URL:

Bhutto¹s Assassination: Who Gains?

By F. William Engdahl

Global Research, January 4, 2008

Assassination of prominent political leaders, presumably protected by the best 
security, is no easy thing. It requires agencies of professional intelligence 
training to insure that the job is done and that no person is caught alive who 
can lead to those behind. Typically, from the assassination of Archduke Francis 
Ferdinand in Sarajevo in July 1914 to JFK, the person pulling the trigger is 
just an instrument of a far deeper conspiracy. So too in the assassination on 
December 27th, of Pakistani former Prime Minister, Benazir Bhutto. Cui bono?.

What was behind the murder of Bhutto at the moment her PPP party appeared about 
to win a resounding election victory in the planned January 8 elections, thereby
posing a mass-based challenge to the dictatorial rule of President Musharraf?

Musharraf¹s government was indecently quick to blame ³Al-Qaeda,² the dubious 
entity allegedly the organization of Osama bin Laden, whom Washington accused 
for masterminding the September 11 2001 attacks. Musharraf just days after, 
declared he was ³sure² Al Qaeda was the author, even though, on US pressure, he 
has asked Scotland Yard to come and investigate. "I want to say it with 
certainty, that these people (Al Qaeda) martyred ... Benazir Bhutto," Musharraf 
said in a Jan. 3 televised address. He named Baitullah Mehsud, a militant tribal
chief fighting the Pakistani Army, who has alleged ties to al-Qaeda and the 
Afghan Taleban. Mehsud denied the charge. Had he been behind such a dramatic 
event, the desired propaganda impact among militant islamists would require 
taking open responsibility instead.

By linking the Bhutto killing to Al Qaeda, Musharraf conveniently gains several 
goals. First he reinforces the myth of Al Qaeda, something very useful to 
Washington at this time of growing global skepticism over the real intent of its
War on Terrorism, making Musharraf more valuable to Washington. Second it gives 
Musharraf a plausible scapegoat to blame for the convenient elimination of a 
serious political rival to his consolidation of one-man rule.

Notable also is the fact that the Musharraf regime has rejected making a routine
autoposy on Bhutto¹s body. Bhutto publicly charged that the Government had 
refused to make followup inquiry after the October bombing which nearly killed 
her and did 134 followers near her auto. Bhutto accused Pakistani authorities of
not providing her with sufficient security, and hinted that they may have been 
complicit in the Karachi attack. She also made clear in a UK television 
interview shortly before her death that she would clean out the Pakistan 
military and security services of corrupt and islamist elements.

In the same David Frost interview, Bhutto also dropped the explosive news that 
Osama bin Laden had been murdered by Omar Sheikh Mohammad, a British citizen of 
Pakistani origin, an ISI Pakistani intelligence operative, who 'confessed' to 
the killing of Daniel Pearl. He was arrested in February 2002. If Benazir's 
claim is correct, Omar Sheikh must have killed Osama before he was arrested in 
February 2002, which makes at least all the Osama messages after that date 
periodically delivered to western media clear forgeries.

Days after the Bhutto killing, Pakistani authorities published a photo alleged 
to be of the severed head of the suicide bomber who killed Bhutto. Severed 
heads, like a dead Lee Harvey Oswald don¹t talk or say embarrassing things. Also
curious is the fact that Bhutto was killed in Rawalpindi, a garrison town, where
every millimeter is controlled by the Army security complex. The murder weapon 
was a Steyr 9mm, issued only to Pakistani Army Special

Forces. Hmmmm.

It has been known for months that the Bush-Cheney administration has been 
maneuvering to strengthen their political control of Pakistan, paving the way 
for the expansion and deepening of the ³war on terrorism² across the region.

Who was Bhutto?

The Bhutto family was itself hardly democratic, drawing its core from feudal 
landowning families, but opposed to the commanding role of the army and ISI 
intelligence. Succeeding her father as head of the PPP, Benazir declared herself
"chairperson for life" ‹ a position she held until her death. Bhutto¹s husband, 
Ali Zardari, ³Mr. 10%,² is known in Pakistan for his demanding a 10% cut from 
letting major government contracts when Benazir was PM. In 2003, Benazir and her
husband were convicted in Switzerland of money laundering and taking bribes from
Swiss companies as PM. The family is allegedly worth several billions as a 
result. As prime minister from 1993 to 1996, she advocated a conciliatory policy
toward Islamists, especially the Taliban in Afghanistan.

The Harvard educated Benazir had close ties to US and UK intelligence as well. 
She used the offices of neo-conservative US Congressman Tom Lantos when she was 
in Washington according to our informed reports, one reason Vice President 
Cheney backed her as a ³safe² way to save his Pakistan strategic alliance in 
face of growing popular protest against Musharraf¹s declaring martial law last 
year. The ploy was to have Bhutto make a face-saving deal with Musharraf to put 
a democratic face on the dictatorship, while Washington maintained its strategic
control. According to the Washington Post of 28 Dec., ³For Benazir Bhutto, the 
decision to return to Pakistan was sealed during a telephone call from Secretary
of State Condoleezza Rice just a week before Bhutto flew home in October. The 
call culminated more than a year of secret diplomacy -- and came only when it 
became clear that the heir to Pakistan's most powerful political dynasty was the
only one who could bail out Washington's key ally in the battle against 
terrorism. . . .As President Pervez Musharraf's political future began to 
unravel this year, Bhutto became the only politician who might help keep him in 

In November, John Negroponte, former Bush Administration Intelligence Czar and 
now Deputy Secretary of State was deployed to Islamabad to pressure Musharraf to
ease the situation by holding elections and forming a power-sharing with Bhutto.
But once in Pakistan, where her supporters were mobilized, Bhutto made clear she
would seek an election coalition to openly oppose Musharraf and military rule in
the planned elections.

A cynical US-Musharraf deal?

Informed intelligence sources say there was a cynical deal cut behind the scenes
between Washington and Musharraf. Musharraf is known to be Cheney¹s preferred 
partner and Cheney we are told is the sole person running US-Pakistan policy 

Were Musharraf to agree to stationing of US Special Forces inside Pakistan, 
³Plan B², the democratic farce with Bhutto could be put aside, in favor of the 
continued Musharraf sole rule. Washington would ³turn a blind eye.²

On Dec. 28, one day after the Bhutto assassination, the Washington Post reported
that in early 2008, ³US Special Forces are expected to vastly expand their 
presence in Pakistan as part of an effort to train and support indigenous 
counter-insurgency forces and clandestine counterterrorism units,² under the US 
Central Command and US Special Operations Command, a major shift in US Pakistani
ties. Until now Musharraf and his military have refused such direct US control, 
aside from the agreement after September 11, extracted from Musharraf under 
extreme pressure of possible US bombing, to give the US military direct control 
of the Pakistan nuclear weapons.

The elimination of Bhutto leaves an opposition vacuum. The country lacks a 
credible political leader who can command national support, which leaves the 
military enhanced as an institution, with its willingness to defend Musharraf on
the streets. This gives the Pentagon and Washington a chance to consolidate a 
military opposition to future Chinese economic hegemony‹the real geopolitical 
goal of Washington.


Seeds of Destruction,
The Hidden Agenda of Genetic Manipulation

F. William Engdahl is a leading analyst of the New World Order, author of the 
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Politics and the New World Order,¹ His writings have been translated into more 
than a dozen languages.

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