It turns out in 1989 on a drizzling afternoon I heard then Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto speak at Harvard University. We were there for my father’s college reunion. I have very few memories of the weekend, though not surprising since I have very few memories of my childhood at all. I do remember the weather and listening to a woman speak. I wish I could remember her words. My mothers says she talked optimistically about the future of the world. Ironic.
In addition to the obituary in the Post there is also an article on political assassinations, which though on an interesting topic reads like it was written in ten minutes. Yet the article furthers something I’ve been thinking recently, in particular while watching Charlie Wilson’s War earlier this week. History is part of a long continuum. One problem with extremists, and frequently with this country as well, is the thought that one action will change everything in the planned direction. History is like a knotted up string and you pull on one end hoping to release it and just wind it tighter somewhere else. It seems the problems of this world, and in particular the problems of the middle east, are so tightly wound that it seems impossible to imagine that you can release the bind by pulling violently.