Below please find the first opinion poll, conducted by Gallup, since the assassination of Benazir Bhutto. Several things stand out:Read Gallup Press Release here.
On most points the conventional wisdom of educated, elite Pakistanis that form the backbone of the US foreign policy community’s interaction with Pakistanis appears to be quite different from widely held public perceptions in Pakistan –a fact borne out by polling data in the past as well. Perhaps one of the many aspects of healing Pakistan is the need to bridge this divide between educated, professional, managerial, urban, well off Pakistan and the rest of the nation.
- First, that BB’s death has caused across-the-board grief that was not found after the deaths of her father and General Ziaul Haq.
- Second, that a majority of Pakistanis (53%) think the PPP’s decision to select Bilawal Bhutto Zardari as the party Co-Chairperson was correct.
- Third, that 48% of Pakistanis blame either government agencies or politicians linked to the government as responsible for the murder.
According to Gallup, “Nearly half of the sample suspected Government agencies (23%) and Government allied politicians (25%). Al-Qaeda or Taliban were suspected by 17%, while 16% suspected other external forces, principally the United States (12%) and India (4%). 19 % said they would not know.” If so many people mistrust their own government, how can that government be an effective US partner in fighting terrorism and winning hearts and minds against Jihadists?
Saturday, January 12, 2008
Husain Haqqani of Boston University, a foreign affairs adviser to the late Benazir Bhutto, writes: