Benazir Should Address Many Mass Rallies, Hold No Street Events, Keep Tight Security Around Her House, Office
Benazir And Islamofascism
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This is Personal Security 101. When your opponents are not only people who want to defeat you at the polls but also people who only speak the language of physical extermination, you have to imagine all possible ways they could strike, and you have to take all precautions necessary, but not to the point that you can no longer do your political work.
This blast has seriously curtailed her public contact options. But I am so glad she is alive and well. Her truck took shrapnel wounds. This was a close call. When you get lucky like this, you don't take a second chance. The next time, the odds will be against you.
Now it is for Benazir to seek and for the government of Pakistan to give top security to her. Her two homes and her offices wherever she might hold meetings must get top security. Benazir is a democrat who thrives on mass contact. Now she is going to have to put herself on a diet. She does not get to have the mass contact that she loves to have. But she can not let her people down at this critical juncture of her country's history. Pakistan is the best hope for democracy in the larger Muslim world.
She does not get to hold street rallies. She only gets to address mass meetings. And at such mass rallies, there has to be this protective distance between the crowd and her. If she can safely sleep at night, safely hold meetings, and safely hold mass rallies, that is many bases covered. This is not the way she likes to do it. But the choices just got limited.
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Clinton Health Plan for Americans Only The Associated Press Clinton said Thursday that immigrants living in the U.S. illegally would not be covered by her proposed universal health care plan. ....... said she supports basic health services for illegal immigrants, including hospitalization and treatment of acute conditions. ..... said the magnitude of the nation's health care challenge means her universal coverage proposal would not cover the 12 million people living in the country illegally. ......... using "carrots and maybe a few sticks" to motivate people to lose weight and make other behavioral changes ...... racial and gender disparities in health care coverage and ways to encourage medical students to become primary care doctors rather than specialists. ......... bring order to a fractured system. ......... smokers or obese people ....... would use the "bully pulpit" to encourage healthy lifestyle choices ........ "We were rounded up and taken to the gym where we had to jump and run. I was horrible at it. They kept telling me to run and I'd say, 'I'm running,'" she said. "It was a very strong message to children that the president cares about your health care. I personally believed Presidents Eisenhower and Kennedy were sitting in the White House signing my certificate." ......... work out the details in consultation with the Congress ...... "old, tired accusations." ....... "Nobody will come out of this process with 100 percent of what he or she wants." Clinton also said the task would be made easier if more Democrats were elected to the Senate in 2008. "It's one of my highest priorities," she said.
Clinton and Obama vie for Hollywood cash Reuters the former first lady and rival Sen. Barack Obama neck and neck for entertainment industry cash. ....... This year's presidential race is shaping up to be the most expensive in history. .... The New York senator, who also has been raising money for the general election, had a total of $50.5 million in the bank, her campaign reported. But nearly $16 million of that cannot be used for the primaries.
Cash race is blazing as Clinton visit nears Seattle Times Clinton is scheduled to make her first public appearance as a presidential candidate in Seattle Monday at the annual dinner of the state Democratic Party. ....... The speech, of course, will be followed by a private fundraiser. ..... At least 20 states — including California and New York — have scheduled their primaries for Feb. 5. ...... the Democratic campaigns in Washington are all wooing 100 or so influential "opinion leaders" — people with well-stocked wallets and Rolodexes who can sway a wide circle of friends. ........ "If you're an opinion leader, it would not be surprising to pick up the phone and have Sen. Hillary Clinton talking to you," Underwood said. ...... Obama is the runaway money leader with more than $1 million in donations statewide, more than Clinton and Edwards combined. His campaign has pulled in $84,500 from one ZIP code alone in Seattle's Washington Park neighborhood. ........ The most visible campaign in Seattle is that of Ron Paul, a Republican congressman from Texas who is a darling of the Libertarians and some anti-war voters. He has raised $164,000 in Washington, and his handmade campaign signs have begun popping up around Seattle. ......... Obama's campaign has a grass-roots feel like that of Howard Dean's in 2004. ....... "The main link between Dean and Obama is opposition to the Iraq war" .... "People are talking about the dynasties of the Bushes and Clintons. He [Obama] is fresh."
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Al Qaeda Attacks Bhutto? Not So Fast Washington Post, United States This is Pakistan. And Pakistan harbors many terrorist groups of its very own. ....... Pakistan's inability (or unwillingness) to take on terrorists -- militarily and otherwise -- within its borders ....... Musharraf, of course, is no stranger to assassination and terrorism at home, and Pakistani authorities have been able to trace each attack back to an al Qaeda. ........ Musharraf himself has learned in two close assassination attempts in December 2003 ...... masterminded by Abu Faraj al-Libbi, an al Qaeda lieutenant ...... enlisted men of the Pakistani air force were closely involved ...... men enlisted in the Special Services Group of commandos charged with VIP security ....... -- the Pakistani intelligence and security services, and Pakistani reactionary parties, support Islamic extremists and terrorists inside the country. ....... the border region of Waziristan into the new command headquarters for global terror ....... now, with the support of Bhutto and her People's Party, perhaps Musharraf will have the backbone and the stomach to pursue the mission.
Bhutto will stay in Pakistan to fight elections - party Forbes, NY
Benazir Bhutto 'was warned of bomb attack' Times Online, UK she had received a warning just half an hour before last night's devastating attack on her homecoming procession that a suicide bomber would target the truck in which she was travelling. ....... the former premier said that many of them were young policemen sent in to block the path of a suicide bomber after last night's warning was received by police and passed on to her entourage by the intelligence services. ........ she nevertheless accused high-ranking members of Pakistan's intelligence services of being behind the attack, arguing that Islamic militants could not mount such a sophisticated attack "from a mountain cave". .......... the severed head of the bomber, a man of around 20 who had been carrying some 20kg of explosives ...... the first blast had been caused by a hand grenade .... a car bomb. ....... Militants linked to al-Qaeda, angered by Ms Bhutto's pledge to hunt down Osama bin Laden, had threatened to assassinate her only a few days ago. ......... she knew "exactly" who wanted to kill her – former officials from the regime of the late General Muhammad Zia ul-Haq ....... "We should purge these elements still present in our secret services," she said. "Many of them took retirement but have been re-hired. Today they have a lot of power and I represent a danger to them: if I bring back democracy to the country, they will lose their influence." ....... the former Prime Minister was “visibly shaken” ....... “came down and met everyone, and was very upset about those who had been killed”. ....... 20,000-strong force sent to guard Ms Bhutto’s ten-mile procession route. ....... She had asked for extra protection, including the specially-designed and reinforced vehicle ....... The White House, which has backed Ms Bhutto’s power-sharing deal, was outraged. ....... The blasts came after a day of huge emotion. Standing wet-eyed on the steps of the aircraft that had brought her back to Pakistan after eight years of exile, dressed in the vivid green of the national flag, Ms Bhutto had pressed her fingers to her eyes and then raised her hands to the sky, as the crowd roared: “You will be the next leader of our country.” ....... In the first three hours of her journey from the airport, the bus crawled just three hundred yards as people climbed electricity poles and shop awnings. Buses had brought many supporters from her native Sindh province, but also from the Punjab, the North West Frontier province and the tribal areas beyond government control.
Al-Qaida, Pakistani Government Fingered For Karachi Bombing The Gate - National Journal, DC death toll ... has hit 139 and, with more than 500 wounded, is expected to climb. ....... the attack bore all the hallmarks of a particular pro-Taliban warlord who operates on the Pakistan-Afghanistan border. Baitullah Mehsud ....... Fighting Islamic terrorism has been a focus for Bhutto, and she frequently offered it as part of the justification for joining forces with General Pervez Musharraf, the sitting president of Pakistan, to create a stronger secular government. ....... Bhutto's husband and her party, the PPP, believe the Pakistani government itself "masterminded" the blast. .......... her convoy was not given jamming devices for electronic signals or for bombs themselves. ........ When the blasts struck, she had just climbed down from the top of an armored vehicle where she had been waving to the crowds and was protected from injury. ........ The convoy had been crawling through the packed streets for 10 hours when an initial small blast exploded in front of her bulletproof bus. A second, larger explosion then tore through the procession, resulting in one of the deadliest bombings in Pakistan's history. ....... a suicide bomber blew himself up next to the convoy about 20 seconds after he threw a grenade. His severed head was recovered and is being examined at a forensic lab.
Bhutto vows to fight for democracy after bomb attack Reuters India, India "We are prepared to risk our lives. We're prepared to risk our liberty. But we're not prepared to surrender this great nation to militants," Bhutto, wearing a black armband ...... "They're killing our armed forces in the tribal areas of Pakistan, they're knocking on the doors of the Frontier Province," Bhutto said ....... "The attack was on what I represent. The attack was on democracy and very unity and integrity of Pakistan," Bhutto said. ..... he could share power with Bhutto after the January election. ..... She escaped unhurt, but the bodies and limbs of supporters and members of her police security escort were scattered all around. ...... Bhutto described hearing the blasts while sat inside the truck working on a speech she was to deliver to a rally. ........ She also questioned why the street lighting was not working on the stretch of road where the attack happened. ..... she expected more attempts on her life, and feared an assassin could be planted in the police
Qaeda-linked Warlord Eyed in Bhutto Attack New York Sun, NY Ms. Bhutto said there were two attackers in the deadly bombing, and that her security guards found a third man armed with a pistol and another with a suicide vest. Ahead of her arrival, she said, she was warned suicide squads were dispatched to kill her. ........ "There was one suicide squad from the Taliban elements, one suicide squad from Al Qaeda, one suicide squad from Pakistani Taliban and a fourth — a group — I believe from Karachi," she said. ........ Bhutto said her guards prevented more carnage. ...... "They stood their ground, and they stood all around the truck, and they refused to let the suicide bomber — the second suicide bomber — get near the truck," she said. ........ a larger blast, destroying two police vans escorting the procession ....... it was suspicious that streetlights failed after sunset yesterday when her convoy was inching its way through the streets of Karachi. She said attempts to reach the national security adviser to have the lights restored were unsuccessful — phone lines were also apparently down. ........ "We were scanning the crowd with the floodlights, but it was difficult to scan the crowds because there was so much darkness." ........ Ms. Bhutto claimed the next attack against her would target her homes in Karachi and her hometown of Larkana, using attackers posing as supporters of a rival political faction. ......... Ms. Bhutto's armored truck, which carried signs that read "Long Live Bhutto," was hoisted away using a crane. One side bearing a big portrait of the former premier was spattered with blood and riddled with shrapnel holes. ........ ripping victims apart and hurling a fireball into the sky ...... She appeared dazed afterward and was escorted to her Karachi home. ...... "The president expressed his strong resolve that a thorough investigation would be carried out in order to bring the perpetrators of this heinous crime to justice" ....... nuts, bolts, and steel balls packed around the explosives had made the bombing so deadly. He said it was impossible to prevent more such attacks. ....... "The government's secret agencies are involved in it. Taliban have no part in it," Mr. Khan said by phone from the volatile northwestern tribal town of Bannu, where he is believed to command pro-Taliban militants loyal to Mr. Mehsud. "This was an effort to provoke common people and create hatred against the Taliban. We do not do anything that harm common people," he said.
Pakistan says Islamist militants behind Bhutto attack Reuters Canada, Canada
Bhutto says blasts were 'attack on democracy' AFP
Bhutto says she was warned before return to Pakistan that suicide ... International Herald Tribune, France
Bhutto calls for inquiry NDTV.com, India
Bhutto Blames Deadly Attack on Militants The Associated Press
Death toll rises in Bhutto attack CNN
Pakistan's Shares Index At Record High On Bhutto's Return AHN
Analysis: What the Bhutto attack means for Pakistan Telegraph.co.uk, United Kingdom Gen Musharraf condemned the bombing as an attack on democracy. ....... Ms Bhutto had plenty of known enemies which included the Afghan and Pakistani Taliban, al-Qa'eda and the coalition provincial government that rules her home province of Sind. ...... The Pakistani Taliban had directly called for suicide bombers to attack Ms Bhutto on her return. ...... She has also accused pro-jihadi retired and serving military officers in Gen Musharraf’s multiple intelligence agencies of plotting against her. ...... According to the Constitution, Gen Musharraf has the powers to postpone the elections for up to 12 months. ...... The PML has long been urging Gen Musharraf to delay the elections so that Ms Bhutto’s popular support is whittled down. ....... Political rallies and demonstrations, public meetings and door to door campaigning by candidates is likely to be heavily curtailed. ...... the potential for the military to rig the elections as it did in 2002 will be significant. ....... a 20 mile-long slow-moving convoy from the airport to the centre of Karachi .......... She had also declined a government offer to fly her in a helicopter from the airport to the spot where she was due to hold a political rally. ....... Ms Bhutto clearly took a calculated risk that cost the lives of 140 people, but she had also put her own life on the line. ........ After nine years in exile Ms Bhutto felt the need to make her political mark and show the army, the public and the international community that she still has a massive following. ........ the US and Britain, which have led efforts to forge a power-sharing deal between Gen Musharraf and Ms Bhutto ........ Unlike Gen Musharraf and the army who have prevaricated on the need to crack down hard on extremism, Ms Bhutto has been clear about the issue from the start. ....... Her party faithful have backed her on the need to politically isolate the Islamic fundamentalist parties, deal harshly with Islamic extremism, make up with President Hamid Karzai of Afghanistan and settle another insurgency that is taking place in Balochistan by the Baloch tribes who are seeking separation from Pakistan. ....... Musharraf ...... has successfully divided the opposition, played hard and soft with the extremists and still wants to keep Islamic fundamentalist parties on board with him in any future electoral alliance. ......... Now that looks increasingly unlikely, as Ms Bhutto is forced to cordon herself off under tight security, reduce contact with her supporters and refrain from touring the country as she had planned to do. ...... Whoever the bombers are, they have sent a clear signal that they will continue to target Ms Bhutto and anyone who is associated with her.
Islamic militants in frame for Bhutto blast AFP
Bhutto attack: the moment 133 died Channel 4 News, UK
Musharraf vow as bomb death toll reaches 133 Scotsman, United Kingdom PAKISTAN'S leader today vowed to hunt down the terrorists behind the suicide bomb attack on Benazir Bhutto's homecoming parade. ......."Eight hundred thousand British people are of Pakistani origin; 70 per cent of the terrorist plots our security forces are chasing have Pakistani links," he said. ........ the forces of moderation must rally around the world and in Pakistan ....... Musharraf appealed for calm and pledged that the government would take "every step" to find those behind the carnage. ...... pledging to fight extremism and promote democracy. ...... A grenade blast halted her convoy before a huge suicide bomb detonated just feet from the front of the truck carrying her, shattering its windows, setting a police escort vehicle on fire and killing security guards, police and civilians. ...... With elections due early in the new year, Ms Bhutto is aiming to be democratically elected for the third time as prime minister, after serving twice before in 1988-90 and 1993-96.
Musharraf speaks to Benazir over phone Hindu, India "The President and Ms Bhutto both expressed their unflinching resolve to fight the scourge of extremism and terrorism," Musharraf's spokesman Maj Gen Rashid Qureshi said, adding the President hoped that "they would refrain from unnecessary blame throwing." ...... "They (Bhutto and Musharraf) also agreed that there is a need for the entire nation to unite in order to rid the country of this menace of suicide bombings, terrorism and extremism," he said. ..... Musharraf also directed the Sindh province government to hold an inquiry and submit a report within 48 hours ...... The President "appealed to segments of society to facilitate the police and administration in the conduct of the investigation ..... Musharraf prayed for the safety and security of Bhutto, who returned home yesterday after eight years in self-imposed exile, during the call.
Election Delay Means Nepal Must Survive a Winter of Widespread ...
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Blasts confirm instability, polarization in Pakistan CNN Bhutto was nearing the tomb of Pakistan's founding father when blasts struck near her convoy in Karachi, Pakistan, killing at least 124 people. ....... The windshield of the vehicle she was riding in was smashed by the blasts ...... a vehicle that was following hers was totally burned out. The scene, he said, was "absolutely horrendous," with blood literally running in streams down the street ...... some "extremist elements were bent on hurting her, because she was seen as coming with an American agenda" ........ the al Qaeda-Taliban alliances .... there's a history of bad blood between her party and the intelligence services ..... she wrote Musharraf a letter naming those she feared would make an attempt on her life. ........ "certain people who have gained a lot through dictatorship. They have presided over the rise of extremism, they have created safe havens in the tribal areas of Pakistan for the Taliban and other militants and they fear my return."
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MySpace Needs Internal Not External Developers New York Times you would think that the site had been as closed to the outside world as North Korea, and is only opening up under pressure from Facebook. ...... the site’s technical stagnation. ..... MySpace exploded precisely because it was a rich, if cacophonous, environment filled with wacky self-expression, mixed with lots of music and video. ....... MySpace has been remarkably stagnant in a fast-changing space, slow to add features and fix some of its odd bugs. .... appears to have put more energy into building MySpaceTV, but that is more a brand extension meant to compete with YouTube ...... MySpace’s user base continues to grow rapidly
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Skype Goes Mobile why mobile VoIP has not yet taken off .... "In the U.S., a key reason is that mobile operators are deliberately trying to keep their customers from being able to use it." ........ Though Skype boasts 246 million accounts, only about one-quarter to one-third of those customers are thought to be regular users, and the vast majority of their calls are free. Skype has struggled to turn its popularity into profits ...... the Skype phone is first and foremost about plain old phone calls. ...... The arrival of the Skype phone is but the latest sign of evolution in wireless, and counter measures by the cellular carriers a ready reminder that there won't be a revolution any time soon.