Archive for the ‘Mark Siegel’ Category

U.S. Brokered Bhutto’s Return to Pakistan

December 28, 2007

 By Robin Wright and Glenn Kessler
Washington Post Staff Writers
Friday, December 28, 2007; Page A01

For Benazir Bhutto, the decision to return to Pakistan was sealed during a telephone call from Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice just a week before Bhutto flew home in October. The call culminated more than a year of secret diplomacy — and came only when it became clear that the heir to Pakistan’s most powerful political dynasty was the only one who could bail out Washington’s key ally in the battle against terrorism.

It was a stunning turnaround for Bhutto, a former prime minister who was forced from power in 1996 amid corruption charges. She was suddenly visiting with top State Department officials, dining with U.N. Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad and conferring with members of the National Security Council. As President Pervez Musharraf’s political future began to unravel this year, Bhutto became the only politician who might help keep him in power.

“The U.S. came to understand that Bhutto was not a threat to stability, but was instead the only possible way that we could guarantee stability and keep the presidency of Musharraf intact,” said Mark Siegel, who lobbied for Bhutto in Washington and witnessed much of the behind-the-scenes diplomacy.

Read the rest:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/12/27/AR2007122701481.html?hpid=topnews

Advertisements