December 28, 2007

Assassinations

In the wake of the assassination of Benazir Bhutto in Pakistan, it's worth recalling that there are quite a few violent deaths of politicians that remain murky after many years.

For instance, in September 1996, a hot-headed opponent of then-Prime Minister Bhutto died following a half-hour long firefight with police in a posh neighborhood in Karachi. His name was Murtaza Bhutto, "the terrorist prince," and he was Benazir's estranged brother. Much to her dismay, her mother had sided with her radical brother against her.

CNN reported at the time:

"Benazir Bhutto's political opponents Saturday rushed to condemn her in the death of her estranged brother Murtaza, and a high court judge was appointed to investigate the bizarre gunfight that took his life in the posh Clifton Road neighborhood of Karachi.

"Opposition leader Nawaz Sharif, in a speech in parliament, accused the government of "state terrorism" against its political opponents. Leaders of the Lahore High Court Bar Association in Punjab were quoted as describing Murtaza Bhutto's killing as a murder."

The more things change in Pakistan, the more they stay the same. Today, the Daily Times of Pakistan reports:

"RAWALPINDI: Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) chief Nawaz Sharif said on Thursday that the tragic death of Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Chairwoman Benazir Bhutto was a result of state terrorism, according to Daily Times staff reporter Aamir Yasin. Addressing PPP workers at Rawalpindi General Hospital (RGH), where Bhutto succumbed to hre injuries, Nawaz said Benazir’s death would be avenged not only by the PPP workers but also by the nation. “The nation will take revenge of Benazir’s killing,” he said. “Musharraf government is incapable of controlling the situation and people are facing the result of his policies,” NNI quoted Nawaz as saying."

Likewise, General Zia, the man who had overthrown Benazir and Murtaza's father in 1977 and had him hanged in 1979, died in airplane accident in 1988 that also killed the U.S. Ambassador and an American general. According to Wikipedia:

"A common suspicion within Pakistan, although with no proof, is that the crash was a political assassination carried out by the senior arm of Pakistan Army, [1] American Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) or Soviet KGB. Other groups who have fallen under suspicion include the Afghan Communists and Shi'ite separatist groups operating within Pakistan."

You might think that would cover all the usual suspects, but Wikipedia goes on to list other rumored assassins, including Mossad, the Bhutto family, "and even the Ahmadi faction" (whoever they might be). Others point to Afghan fundamentalists, the Indian secret service, and Iran. There hasn't been any mention of Opus Dei's legion of albino assassin monks, but I saw "The Da Vinci Code," so I'm not ruling them out.

Barbara Crossette, the New York Times bureau chief in South Asia from 1988 to 1991, wrote in 2005:

Of all the violent political deaths in the twentieth century, none with such great interest to the United States has been more clouded than the mysterious air crash that killed President Mohammed Zia ul-Haq of Pakistan in 1988, a tragedy that also claimed the life of a serving American ambassador and most of General Zia's top commanders. The list of potential malefactors has grown as the years have passed, compounding the mysteries buried in this peculiar, unfinished tale. The one unarguable fact is that no serious, conclusive, or even comprehensive inquiry into the crash has been undertaken in the United States ..."
While Pakistan's current history is as luridly dynastic-homicidal as Shakespeare's history plays (or as India's current history), Mexico's isn't far behind. For example, in March 1994, the Mexican ruling party's presidential candidate, Luis Donaldo Colosio, was gunned down during a campaign rally in front of thousands of people in Tijuana. Colosio had been handpicked by President Carlos Salinas to succeed him, but he seemed to be leaning toward repudiating Salinas, a mirror image of how Bhutto seemed to be running against the dictator Musharraf, but was actually part of a complex plot by the Bush Administration to give Musharraf a more democratic facade by powersharing with Bhutto.

Salinas's government responded by advancing numerous conflicting theories about who dun it, leaving the citizenry too confused and cynical to focus their outrage on any particular caudillo. Colosio's killing remains much in dispute. (Here is a timeline put together by movie director and conspiracy buff Alex Cox of "Repo Man" and "Sid & Nancy" fame.)

This assassination was quite analogous to Bhutto's, but because it occurred just a few miles over the border from San Diego instead of on the other side of the world, it received far less coverage in the American press.

The previous year, Cardinal Juan Jesus Posadas Ocampo was shot 14 times at close range at the Guadalajara airport. Nobody has been convicted of the crime. The Salinas government blamed drug dealers, but much of the country blamed the government.

Salinas is trying to get Pope Benedict to clear his name in the slaying. The Catholic News Service reported last May:

"According to the reports, Salinas' objective is to have the unresolved crime not declared "a state crime" and to advance the idea that the cardinal's murder "was ordered by Freemasons and public servants of that persuasion" like the former interior minister, Fernando Gutierrez Barrios, who died in 2000."

So, that's another example of ... wait a minute ... Did that just say the ex-President is blaming Freemasons for killing the Cardinal? Why not the Knights Templar? Is this part of the publicity campaign for "National Treasure: Book of Secrets"?

Gutierrez Barrios, by the way, was the long-time head of the Mexican secret police. He was most famous in America for arresting and then freeing Fidel Castro and Che Guevara in 1956. Castro and Gutierrez Barrios enjoyed a warm lifelong friendship, although Communists in Mexico tended to disappear into Gutierrez Barrios's jails and stay disappeared. An interesting fellow, but Google doesn't have much supporting his link to the Freemasons.

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

15 comments:

manindarkhat said...

This is recorded as one of Muhammad's sayings:

"If you hear the news of an outbreak of an epidemic (plague) in a certain place, do not enter that place: and if the epidemic falls in a place while you are present in it, do not leave that place to escape from the epidemic."

http://www.ishwar.com/islam/holy_hadith/book86/index.html

Plagues spread because people flee them, which is why we're very foolish to allow immigration from countries like Pakistan and Somalia. If there's serious trouble in Pakistan, how many more Pakistanis will enter the west with the culture -- and genes -- responsible for the serious trouble?

tommy said...

"A common suspicion within Pakistan, although with no proof, is that the crash was a political assassination carried out by the senior arm of Pakistan Army, [1] American Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) or Soviet KGB. Other groups who have fallen under suspicion include the Afghan Communists and Shi'ite separatist groups operating within Pakistan."

Everybody except the most obvious suspects: the same Sunni militants who have tried repeatedly in the past few months to assassinate her. With half the nation of Pakistan approving of bin Laden, it's hardly any wonder why people will blame this on anyone but the likely culprits - even if al-Qaeda is reportedly claiming credit.

tommy said...

Oops! Sorry, it's early in the morning and I'm not awake. I thought the suspicions were about Bhutto's assassination, not Zia's.

DAJ said...

"If there's serious trouble in Pakistan, how many more Pakistanis will enter the west with the culture -- and genes -- responsible for the serious trouble?"

Were English/Scottish genes responsible for the troublesome dynastic-homicidal tradition of Britain from medieval times until the Glorious Revolution?

Albeit, I do concur that it is most judicious for the U.S. to reduce, if not end, immigration from inexorably chaotic nations like Pakistan and Somalia.

David said...

Choosing whom to invade (or "intervene in the domestic affairs of") is like choosing whom to marry: both must be done very carefully; both mean that you're mixing with their relatives.

Almost every country the US "intervenes in the domestic affairs of" is a net importer of immigrants to the US. Invade the world is virtually identical to invite the world (to use Steve's terms), no matter how hostile the belligerence. We made war on Japan and got practically bought by the peaceful Japanese by the '80s (that has cooled down for unrelated reasons). We made war on Germany and got von Braun running us to the moon (and others earlier, during our not-very-neutral neutrality toward Germany in the '30s). We intervene in the Middle East and soak up all sorts of Assyrians, Iraqis, Iranians, etc. The chief and perhaps ONLY long-range result of the Iranian hostage crisis was the massive influx of Iranians into the US. Vietnamese naturalization increased following the Vietnam War. Etc.

Look at ancient Rome. Subjugate the foreigners, absorb the foreigners. And die off.

If Israel allowed "the right of return" for the people it's at perpetually at war with, the demographics would wreck Israel swiftly.

Be careful whom you make war on. You may end up being them, particularly if your way of life is the more attractive.

Every time some blowhard hollers: "We gotta invade those evil (fill in the blank) over there!", he is actually saying: "I want my nation filled with those (fill in the blank) people!"

This is precisely why isolationism is the best (non-Carthaginian) solution to Muslim invasion of the West. Hostiles come here because we mix it up with them. By isolationism I mean miltarily closed borders, expulsion of illegal immigrants, and autarky as the default economic system (not forbidding international trade, just not supporting it). Like everyone else, though, I am still trying to figure out how to stop Muslim speedboats from landing - full of sharia! - on the shores of Spain. :-P (That's for iSteve oldtimers.)

Evil Neocon said...

David -- your policy prescriptions are profoundly (sorry, all due respect) profoundly stupid.

Isolationism produces ... the Hereditary Kim kingdom of North Korea. Not a place anyone would want to live.

There is a happy medium between open borders and amnesty and the Hermit Kingdom.

Rome prospered when it's manpower was made up of free-holding small farmers who could be relied upon to fight during incredible odds. It failed when it became a massive urbanized bread-and-circuses state with massive slave plantations and a mercenary army. In other words far too much elitism and not enough populism.

The problem with Pakistan and Mexico is that tribalism and brutal fights over spoils by what amounts to gangster tribes guarantees vicious assassinations and struggles for power.

This would not be a problem for the US if we lived in the era of 1812, with jet planes, internet, satellite TV, nuclear weapons, and global trade. We don't live in that world and proposing to return to it is a stupid fantasy not worthy of anyone with a brain.

The problem for the US with Mexico is managing the chaotic struggle for power/loot so we don't have waves of people coming over and causing havoc inside the US of all sorts (as we do now). The problem for the US in Pakistan is keeping a friendly regime in power so we can resupply Afghanistan and prevent our forces there from being wiped out; and keeping the nukes out of the hands of AQ. So we can keep our cities from being nuked.

These are limited, rational objectives that require the US to use various levers against divided forces in Mexico and Pakistan.

And of the two, Pakistan is the more important or closer fire to our feet for reasons discussed above. Mexico is probably just as significant a long-term threat to US sovereignty, but we have more time to work things out there, and probably far more levers.

Invade the World, Invite the World, is (sorry Steve) a stupid slogan. We should not be allowing the masses of people pouring in to this nation, but we have real enemies determined to us mass-casualty terror to make us surrender to Islam and become, essentially, slaves. It's a fantasy ideology but one that is dangerous. It's certainly got a lot of people killed and since the first 1993 WTC attack has steadily escalated. Though the 1993 plotters had planned to topple one tower onto the other to kill 50,000 people.

For a deeply tribal, constantly fighting people this is how conflicts are fought: horrific and very public acts of brutality to force opponents to surrender. On the theory that enough massive brutality and killing will intimidate your opponent.

Our presence or non-presence in Muslim affairs makes no difference in a globally connected, global trade world. We are not going back to the world of 1812 any time soon. As long as primitive tribal peoples see on the internet and satellite TV that their societies are manifest failures and ours successful ones, albeit "weak" and "corrupted" they will continue "tribal raiding" for ever-expanding lists of concessions.

Heck Jefferson faced that problem on the Barbary Coast and ended up beefing up the Navy and bombarding Tripoli to ruins to finally solve the problem.

David said...

Another, quick example:

France messed with Algiers. France lost. But do you think that if France had won, the streets of Paris would NOT be filled with "Muslim youth" torching hundreds of cars per night? IMO you are naive if you think so.

Oh, another example:

America participated in the slave trade, a hostile act. The descendants of the victims now commit violent crime in America out of proportion to their numbers. As to our Indian victims, only a virtual genocide - through wars, forced relocation, and a fortuitous pandemic - kept them harmless.

Examples of this kind of demographic blowback from war or hostilities could be multiplied indefinitely.

Which gives rise to an unoriginal analysis regarding war. Either don't make war at all; or be careful which people you decide to make war on, since they have a likelihood of becoming your kinsmen at a later date; or commit genocide.

That versus today's strategy of war, namely picking fights all over and prosecuting them lightly. Either go all the way and slaughter everybody, or pull out of their area and leave them alone.

I don't believe that all international amity and trade must be preceded by a war short of genocide. That would be lunacy. But "lunatics r us (U.S.)," these days.

quo vadis scipio said...

yes, cry me a river. bhutto was a full blown socialist. she was a child of privilege from a family of super criminals who ended up running around espousing marxist solutions for the little people. what a creep. politics in that part of the world is primitive gangland struggle as opposed to our slightly more sophisticated gangland struggles here in the west. she was right there in the thick of it for many years. how many people do we think she ordered killed during her political career?

this event does help to reveal the shallow state of our presidential candidates. especially h clinton seems rather swept up by the gender of the victim. and let's not ignore the fact that bhutto was a good looking woman. it is a gear grinding experience for us to see women get caught up in gang violence. especially attractive women. it just doesn't seem proper ...because it isn't proper.

anyway pakistan is a hellhole circling the drain. but the pentagon announced today that pakistan's nukes are secure. so what else is new?

btw if bhutto was a 'fascist' then that adjective would be included in every headline about her assassination. instead her socialist bio is flushed down the memory hole by fellow travelers in the media.

hey wait a minute marxism killed ~100 million during the twentieth century. pass it on.

manindarkhat said...

DAJ asks:

Were English/Scottish genes responsible for the troublesome dynastic-homicidal tradition of Britain from medieval times until the Glorious Revolution?

Undoubtedly, in part. But British genes were also partly responsible for positive things during that period. And the troublesome ones may have dwindled:

We show that humans are changing relatively rapidly on a scale of centuries to millennia, and that these changes are different in different continental groups...

http://isteve.blogspot.com/2007/12/are-humans-evolving-faster.html

Bringing in different genes underlying a lower average IQ and nastier kinds of political trouble was not a good idea, as Europe is seeing. It's like getting over cholera and then infecting yourself with typhoid.

neil craig said...

The recent "suspicious" death not mentioned is that of Milosevic.

Shortly before his death a blood test showed the presence of rifampcin a prescription only drug used only for combatting leprosy. It passes through the body quickly & thus is undetectable & destroys damaged hearts (as Milosevic's already is.

I use inverted commas because it seems not so much a suspicion as an inevitable deduction, that he was murdered, by his jailers, because, after 4 1/2 years of "trial" they had been unable to produce any evidence to convict him & not to do so would be to admit that the war criminals were on the other side, including Clinton.

David said...

For a deeply tribal, constantly fighting people this is how conflicts are fought: horrific and very public acts of brutality to force opponents to surrender. On the theory that enough massive brutality and killing will intimidate your opponent.

This is the anti-Americanism I despise. We're "a deeply tribal, constantly fighting people." (Hiroshima, shock and awe) Thanks!

Seriously, what's best is a strong military used as a last resort. Not a first resort - not pulling levers in 130 countries as we do now.

Domestically, meddling doesn't improve our "welfare" types. So how could it work to pacify tribes abroad (it doesn't, it stirs them up)? I favor prison at home and the armed forces on the border, with those forces controlled by Congress alone and sparingly used for defensive excursions. (I would have backed turning Tripoli into Carthage.) Call it Fortress America or the Hermit Kingdom if you like. Just don't call it "elitist": most of the common people in the United States approve of these ideas; it's the elites that grok lording it internationally.

As to the internet, television, jet planes, nuclear weapons, global trade: these things have existed for a long time (letters, books and paintings, sailing ships, matches in a world of wooden cities, global trade). Technological refinements don't affect principles.

David Davenport said...

We are not going back to the world of 1812 any time soon. As long as primitive tribal peoples see on the internet and satellite TV that their societies are manifest failures and ours successful ones, albeit "weak" and "corrupted" they will continue "tribal raiding" for ever-expanding lists of concessions.



That's rather long-winded.

We're not going back to 1812? Very perceptive.

Do you agree that we should stop all Third World immigration into the USA, yes or no?

anony-mouse said...

Doesn't this all make Bush look a lot better? The worse that you can allege about his treatment of his major opponents is that he may have stolen an election and turned that major opponent into the leading member of an Earth-loving pagan cult

TGGP said...

Freemasons! I knew it was them! Even when it was bears, I knew it was them!

fwood1 said...

A Masonic conspiracy behind the Cardinal's death may be wacky, but the Masons are much more involved in politics in Latin countries (and that includes France)than they are here, where they're more interested in wearing funny hats and driving tiny cars.