Being brave is not simply risking your life when you have no choice, but making the choice to do so when you could easily do otherwise.
By that measure Benazir Bhutto was a very brave woman.
Benazir Bhutto could have easily stayed in the West, safe and admired. She was already the toast of the cocktail party set, as well as various NGO’s and Foundations. She could have sat back, like the Iraqi National Congress (INC) in the run up to the Iraq war, and agitated for OTHER people to do the heavy lifting. Once Musharaff had been run out of power and the military quelled by OTHER people, she could have returned to a victory parade and another stint as Prime Minister or even President.
Perhaps it would have turned out that way, perhaps not.
What is certain is that her death has energized the pro-democracy movement in Pakistan. Like “Braveheart” William Wallace, it’s possible that Benazir Bhutto has accomplished more in death than she ever accomplished in life. She is now a martyr for her country and her people. Her brave example will be a clarion call for action against a despised dictator and his military regieme, as well as the Islamic militants he has coddled.
The irony of this is that in spite of the claims made by Bhutto’s people, Pervez Musharraf probably had nothing to do with this incident.
While Bhutto certainly has many enemies in Pakistan, not the least of which are in the military, the Taliban probably has the most to gain from her death. The Taliban would love to destabilize Pakistan. By doing so, it would cease to be a viable base of operations for America and other anti-Taliban forces, it would give the Taliban greater freedom of movement and direct access to the ocean, and then there are the nukes. Pakistan has about 60 of them and the Taliban would love to aquire them, not for the purpose of nuking anyone per se, but for the purposes of nuclear blackmail.
If Benazir Bhutto’s supporters can bring themselves to see clearly, they will see that they will only end up playing into the hands of the Taliban if they allow this to tear Pakistan appart. Bhutto’s death is probably the final nail in the coffin of Musharaff’s Presidency, but if it is allowed to kill Pakistan as well, then Braveheart Bhutto’s death will have been in vain.