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This Happened

This Happened—December 27: Brutal End For A Woman Political Icon

Benazir Bhutto, twice Prime Minister of Pakistan, and then leader of the opposition Pakistan People's Party, had been campaigning ahead of elections scheduled for January 2008 when she was shot, in a suicide terrorist attack.

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When Was Benazir Bhutto killed?

After eight years in exile in Dubai and London, while her court cases for corruption remained pending in foreign and Pakistani courts, Bhutto returned to prepare for the 2008 national elections, with a possible power-sharing deal with President Pervez Musharraf. Upon her return to the country to begin campaigning, she was killed on December 27, 2007.

What happened after Benazir Bhutto’s death?

After her death, supporters rioted and reportedly chanted "Dog, Musharraf, dog", referring to President Pervez Musharraf. Others attacked police and burned election campaign posters. Though the upcoming elections would be postponed, opposition groups said that the assassination could lead to a civil war. After protests broke out, Musharraf ordered a crackdown on rioters and looters to "ensure safety and security", but in the end, over 100 people died, either by police or in the crossfire.

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Blinken's Faceless Diplomacy — A Secret Weapon For Post-War Peace?

Reserved, not accustomed to the spotlight, capable of taking a step back and not overshadowing the president. In this time of crisis, Antony Blinken navigates geopolitics with the president's full trust.

Illustration of Antony Blinken speaking at a lectern with his face blurred, and a U.S. flag in the background

Blinken and you'll miss it

Alberto Simoni


WASHINGTON — When he was Secretary of State, Colin Powell was famously reluctant to leave his office on the seventh floor of the Truman Building. In contrast, John Kerry had such a passion for traveling that he took 108 trips during his four years as the head of U.S. diplomacy.

Antony Blinken is clearly following in Kerry's footsteps. His shuttle diplomacy, with which he is trying to defuse the conflict in the Middle East — preventing it from spreading, protecting civilians, and projecting American leadership in the region — has so far tallied for 73 foreign stops.

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On Wednesday, he laid out his post-war vision of a united Palestinian state that connects Gaza and the West Bank. Earlier in the week, when reporters asked him if he had really achieved anything from his endless chain of meetings with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Arab leaders and others, he qualified the current situation as a "work in progress"

It's a low-profile, cautious, and prudent expression for a reserved man, not used to the limelight, capable of taking a step back and not overshadowing the president.

Qualities for many, limitations for others.

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