With Bhutto, we only awaited the inevitable
So what part of this was a surprise?
That she was killed on a Thursday? That she was killed in Rawalpindi? That the shots came before the explosives went off? That she was killed coming out of a rally rather than going into a rally? Rather than in the middle of a rally?
What difference does it make?
Benazir Bhutto is dead. Assassinated.
And the only surprise is that it’s no surprise at all.
From the moment she announced her intention to return to Pakistan, to her country, she was a dead woman.
If it wasn’t clear who would get her, there wasn’t any doubt at all that someone would get her, and that it wouldn’t take long. She was too big a threat to too many people. She knew their names. She kept a list.
The first attempt—just weeks ago, only hours after her return from exile—barely missed her. Did anyone think for even a moment there wouldn’t be other attempts? Did anyone think that one of those attempts wouldn’t eventually succeed?
She was marked, and she knew it. Yet she insisted on being out in public, out among her people. Fearless? Foolish? Fatalistic?
We’d watch her on the evening news—admire her composure, marvel at her courage. And the news clip would end, the interview would be completed, and we’d turn to each other and say, “Six months. Tops.” It was never a question of whether, only a question of when.
And now we have our answer.