Friday, June 27, 2008

Whatever happened to Osama bin Laden?

Osama bin Laden seems to have gone from Most Wanted Man Alive to Care Factor Zero. President Bush, after swearing to bring bin Laden to justice, admitted some years ago that bin Laden was not a priority. But this interview with the late Benazir Bhutto is very interesting...

On 2nd November 2007, less than two months before she was assassinated, Benito gave an interview with David Frost where she talked about the people wanting to stop the democratic process in Pakistan, and her fear that they were involved in the previous assassination attempt against her and would try again. Six minutes into the video, Bhutto claims that bin Laden has been murdered. Frost didn't bother to question her about this: either he considers the murder of bin Laden old news, unimportant, or he's simply losing his mojo as an interviewer.

Bhutto clearly felt that she was at risk of assassination from Pakistani government forces. It's not clear why al Qaeda would have assassinated the opposition leader, if indeed it was al Qaeda: arguably they could have been motivated by pure misogamy, or perhaps they prefer having an anti-democratic military strong man in power.

Of course, this assumes that al Qaeda really was behind her assassination. It's not clear that al Qaeda is anything more than a convenient bogey-man for the US and Pakistani governments. It wouldn't be the first or the last time that a supposed revolutionary or terrorist group had been infiltrated by so many government agents that in fact there were no revolutionaries left in it. Once a government, or even part of a government, starts defining itself in terms of opposition to shadowy criminal figures, the temptation is very large to create such convenient scapegoats.


Anonymous said...

Misogamy....they didn't like that she was married???

Amy said...

they probably meant misogyny