So it's been a solid 3 weeks since the tragic assassination of Benazir Bhutto in Pakistan. As the time has passed on there has been a great deal of information surfacing. After a little bit of research, inspired by one of my favourite political blogs, Little Country Lost, I have come to some pretty startling conclusions.
I think that the easiest way to present this is to list the events chronologically, and not by topic. I am sorry if this is confusing, but I swear, like an episode of Lost all of the pieces will fit together, and it will leave far more questions than answers. Today I am going to give the back story that leads
Our principal characters are:
Benazir Bhutto, former Prime Minister of Pakistan
General Pervez Musharraf, current President of Pakistan
Osama bin Laden, September 11th Mastermind
Mohammed Atta, one of the September 11th hijackers
Mahmoud Ahmad, former head of Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), the Pakistani equivalent of the CIA
Ohmar Sheikh, British-born terrorist of Pakistani descent
Condolezza Rice, current US Secretary of State
George W. Bush...hopefully you know that name...
Daniel Pearl, American journalist
Porter Gross, Republican Congressman, and co-head of the Joint 9/11 Intelligence Inquiry
Bob Grahme, Democratic Senator, other half of the above Intelligence Inquiry
1994: Ohmar Sheikh kidnaps three British and one American traveler and is sentenced to jail in New Delhi, India.
1996: Benazir Bhutto is removed from office as Prime Minister of Pakistan on charges of corruption.
1998: Bhutto flees Pakistan, and moves to Dubai on self-imposed exile.
October, 1999: General Musharraf leads military coup of Pakistan. Establishes Mahmoud Ahmad as the head of the ISI. Ahmad had been serving as the corps commander for Rawalpindi (remember that place, it'll be important later)
December, 1999: Indian Airlines Flight 814 is hijacked and all of the passengers are taken hostages only to be released in exchange for three convicted terrorists, including Ohmar Sheikh. The four hijackers are late revealed to all be Pakistani nationals with links to the ISI.
November, 2000: George W. Bush wins his first term in office...sort of....
September 11, 2001: Osama bin Laden masterminds major terrorist attacks as 19 hijackers, including Mohammed Atta, commander four passenger flights and crash them into the two World Trade Centre Towers, the Pentagon, and one crash lands in Pennsylvania.
While the first plane (flown by Atta) strikes the North Tower, Mahmoud Ahmad, ISI director, is having breakfast in Washington D.C., with Republican Congressman, Porter Gross, and Democratic Senator Bob Grahme, as they discuss Osama bin Laden. Ahmad is quickly brought into meetings with US officials, who demanded Pakistani cooperation in the ensuing investigation.
September 17, 2001: George Bush states that he wants Osama bin Laden "Dead or Alive".
October 7, 2001: Mahmoud Ahmad steps down as ISI director in the face of US pressure, after it is reported that he ordered Ohmar Sheikh to transfer $100,000 US to accounts owned by hijacker, Mohammed Atta. The story goes widely unreported in Western countries.
The United States leads an invasion of Afghanistan to capture Osama bin Laden and depose the Taliban.
EDITOR'S NOTE: I told you that this was complicated, trust me, we'll be getting back to Bhutto in a bit, this will all become very clear soon.
November 17, 2001: Allied forces begin battle of Tora Bora, were they believe to have Osama bin Laden cornered.
December 26, 2001: Egyptian Newspaper, al-Wafd, and the Pakistani Journal publish an article discussing Osama bin Laden's funeral 10 days prior.
Read that one again if you need to, soak it in.
January 23, 2002: American journalist, Daniel Pearl, is kidnapped in Pakistan.
February 2002: Porter Gross and Bob Grahme begin their work as co-heads of the Joint Inquiry into Intelligence Community Activities before and after the Terrorist Attacks of September 11, 2001.
February 21, 2002: A video titled The Slaughter of the Spy-Journalist, the Jew Daniel Pearl, is released, showing Daniel Pearl's dead body.
March 21, 2002: Ohmar Sheikh is arrested as the supposed mastermind beyond the Pearl kidnapping and killing.
April 4, 2002: The US Joint Chief of Staff says "The goal was never to get bin Laden". Signaling a startling shift in the Bush Administrations language with respect to bin Laden.
July 15, 2002: Sheikh is sentenced to death for his role in the Pearl murder, a decision which has been appealed and subsequent hearings are delayed. No final date has been set for his trial.
December, 2002: Porter, Goss and co. release their report outlining what could have been done differently to prevent the terrorist attacks, however they accept the White House's ruling to not mention anything that the President did or did not know prior to the attacks, stating that it is classified information.
So here we are 5 years ago, ready to jump to the events of this fall and winter that lead to her Bhutto's and how it all links together with the September 11, attacks. I'll give you a hint though, it has something to do with this interview that Bhutto had with David Frost of Al-Jazeera English on November, 2007. If you are feeling lazy, jump to 2:14 and listen to what she says...
Yeah you heard that right...
I'll be posting Part 2 in a few days, depending on my schedule and such....hope you're intrigued...
Until next time,