Friday, December 28, 2007

Bhutto Assassination and Shades of JFK's Death

Watching CNN this morning on the Bhutto assassination I get an eerie déjà vu from the JFK assassination. Is Rawalpindi the new Dallas in the Global Village? Is there a metaphorical grassy knoll in the park where she was speaking? Will conspiracy theories dominate the cultural interpretation of this tragedy?

The official Pakistan government information from the Interior Ministry is Bhutto dies by hitting her head on the vehicle she was travelling in. It was not the bullet(s) that we were originally told entered her neck and exiting on the other side of her skull. Nor did the suicide bomber’s shrapnel cause or contribute to her death even though it killed about 20 bystanders. “Nothing entered her head” according to government security officials and we are expected to take that “fact” at face value.

The security people are seen as immediately hosing down the site of the disaster and destroying valuable evidence in the process. She is taken to the local hospital and doctors who apparently attended to her give us sound bite diagnoses of her demise and are talking about cardiac arrest as a cause of death. There is no autopsy and Bhutto is buried in less than 24 hours. Hmmm!

We get accusations of the Pakistan intelligence agency being behind the death as well as al-Qaeda and other Islamic fundamentalists’ cells and even agents of Musharraf himself are under suspicion as being behind the assassination.

The conspiracy theories have already started and the facts are becoming irrelevant to the interpretation of the implications of this assassination. The 24 hour worldwide news cycle will show pictures and video tht will be repeated interminably. MSM will be offering little by way of insight or any commitment to confirm the accuracy of the information or analysis on implication and interpretation. Maybe the key and notworthy exception to the MSM circus will by the BBC.

Constant vigilance and striving for the truth is the responsibility of citizenship and a price of freedom in democracies. We all must cast a critical and jaundiced eye at what we are being shown and told about what happened, who did it and who is responsible.