Friday, August 12, 2011

Benazir Bhutto

Experts on Middle Eastern studies would consider this a narrow entry, barely scratching the surface of the complex topic that is political history in Pakistan, but I must address part of the story of Benazir Bhutto.  Many countries in the world have had women PMs or Presidents or Chancellors, but not the United States.

Anyway, Benazir Bhutto has a convoluted and interesting history.  This woman was prime minister in Pakistan twice, and head of the Pakistan People's Party (PPP), besides holding other positions in government.  Her father, who founded the PPP, was a former prime minister in Pakistan but he was executed in 1979 after a military coup.

Thus she was outside of Pakistan when she became chairwoman of the PPP, and after returning to Pakistan won her first term as prime minister.  Now whether good or bad, she was removed on charges of corruption after serving only 20 months.  She was the prime minister again from 1993-1996 and was removed again on similar charges.  She was assassinated when she returned to Pakistan after a self-imposed exile to Dubai.  Her assassination was in the city of Rawalpindi in December 2007.  Her husband, Asif Ali Zardari, is the current President of Pakistan.

There are many women leaders in today's world, from the first woman Prime Minister of Australia Julia Gillard to the current Presidente of Brasil, Dilma Rousseff.  I hope I have shed some light on this one woman who, regardless of her performance, good or bad, reflected on the progress of women in their ability to hold positions of power in the modern world.

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