Sunday, January 06, 2008

Reference: The best hope is gone, Bangkok Post, January 6, 2008

There is no doubt that the assassination of Benazir Bhutto was a tragic event and that she deserves an eulogy but the one presented by Global Viewpoint (The best hope is gone, Bangkok Post, January 6, 2008) takes things a little too far all the way into the realm of fairy tales. The assumption that Al-Qaeda carried out the killing is premature and the conclusions drawn from that assumption including the comparison with Ahmed Shah Massoud and a heroic role for Ms Bhutto in the fight against Al-Qaeda are just plain silly. Pakistan still has whatever hope it had prior to the assassination of achieving democracy and containing Islamic extremism. Some hopes are probably gone or at least weakened and those would include the hope of unfreezing certain Swiss bank accounts and sealing forever certain pending court cases by way of political deals made with Musharraf. Other hopes are still as distant as ever and among them is the hope that the day will come when real democracy overcomes dynastic politics in South Asia and real issues rather than family soap operas sway the electorates there.

Cha-am Jamal

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