by Peter Freyne
Was it not inevitable?
I heard it when I tuned in Peter Mallary filling in for Mark Johnson on WDEV.
My first gut reaction was: Amazing that Benazir had survived this long since returning in October to her native Pakistan where her family had been a political dynasty and her father hanged. She was the first woman to lead an Islamic state. There the Harvard grad also served five years in prison - mostly solitary confinement.
Such a courageous woman.
I won't pretend to know anything about "Pakistan" beyond how to spell it.
It's 10:20 a.m. - no statements from Vermont's congressional trio... yet.
From U.S. Sen. Patrick J. Leahy [12:38 PM):
"This is a sorrowful day for Pakistan and for people of goodwill across the globe.
"This election is important in what it will show about the vigor of democratic institutions in Pakistan. The lack of real democracy and the crippling of Pakistan’s judiciary have been grave setbacks. The earlier protests by Pakistan’s lawyers in defense of the rule of law helped show the world what is at stake, and now, with this tragedy, the whole world again is watching Pakistan.
"The people of Pakistan deserve to know that the people of the United States stand with them as they struggle to restore constitutional government and to prevail over thuggery. They will want to know that our military aid is no longer blind to their aspirations. And they need to know that we share their profound sense of loss."
From U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders [1:11 PM]:
“Despite the grave dangers she faced, Benazir Bhutto showed enormous courage by continuing to participate in Pakistan’s democratic process. I am saddened and outraged by this cowardly assassination and I urge the Pakistani government to undertake a vigorous investigation to apprehend those responsible for this terrible deed. Pakistan, a nation armed with nuclear weapons, is now in the midst of dangerous political crisis. The United States must increase its diplomatic efforts in working with the democratic forces in Pakistan to promote stability, democracy and peace.”