Archive for November, 2008

Courage & politics

November 11th, 2008

I recently read an article justifying Asfandyar Wali’s departure from Pakistan to the UK written by Gulmina Bilal of the ANP, dated Oct 27. That prompted me to write this piece to highlight Shaheed Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto’s courage. On Ms Bilal’s article I shall only say that if Asfandyar, who has been a great friend of mine, had one good adviser, that person would have stood between him and the plane that took him to UK.

Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto’s security concerns increased manifold as the time for her scheduled return to Pakistan on Oct 1 of last year drew closer. She had herself realized that the threat to her life was real and despite all that she landed at Karachi on schedule. Little did she know that within hours bombs meant to kill her would kill over 170 people within yards of her vehicle. And even when that happened, she faced it with exemplary courage, visited the injured in hospital as well as condoling with the families who lost loved ones.

From my days as her intelligence chief I remember vividly that she would brush aside any fears expressed by law-enforcement agencies about her personal safety and would always say that her life was in the hands of Allah. She said she could not remove herself from the down-trodden because she was their leader.
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