A new video of the assassination of Benazir Bhutto provides additional visual evidence the former prime minister was killed by pistol shots fired by an assailant in the crowd, fueling suspicions President Musharraf has engineered a cover-up to hide government involvement in the political killing.
The new video, broadcast by Channel 4 in Islamabad, shows more clearly a young man in sunglasses firing three shots at Bhutto.
The sequence from the second video shows the man standing apparently with an accomplice, a second man wearing a white shawl, who is the prime suspect for the suicide bomber.
The new video shows the back of Bhutto’s head veil being lifted and her hair rising out of place as the shooter fires three shots at point blank range from the left of her white, bulletproof SUV.
Close analysis of the video shows Bhutto falling back into the SUV immediately after the gunshots and before the suicide bomb goes off.
A blogger who claims to have been in touch with a source in direct contact with the cameraman who shot the video, captured three still images before the tape was removed from Orkut.com.
The first image shows the shooter in the crowd, identified by his sunglasses. The shooter is dressed as a professional, with suit and tie.
Behind the shooter, the suspected suicide bomber is seen standing, identified by a white covering over his head.
In the first still image, the shooter appears waiting calmly as Bhutto’s SUV approaches in the lower right of the frame.
The second video capture shows the moment of the shooting, with the shooter now in close proximity to the left of the SUV, firing a pistol with his right arm extended at an upwards angle toward Bhutto, who is standing upright in the SUV.
The third video capture shows Bhutto dropped down into the SUV before the detonation of the suicide bomb, supporting the argument she was well within the vehicle before the concussion of the suicide bomb hit.
The newly released video provides visual confirmation of an earlier released video, with a perspective behind the SUV that includes a view of the crowd, the instant of the shooting itself and a view of Bhutto until she fell back into the SUV after the shooting and before the suicide bomb blast.
An examination of the Bhutto assassination videos that many are now comparing to the analysis of the Zapruder film of the JFK assassination is raging internationally, challenging the government’s official explanations of the assassination.
The Pakistani government is holding to the official theory that Bhutto was not hit by the bullets fired but was killed when her head hit the sun roof lever as she was thrown back into the SUV by the concussion from the suicide bomb.
An earlier government claim, now disavowed, was that shrapnel from the suicide bomb killed Bhutto.
Under mounting criticism, the Pakistani government also has released X-rays that allegedly show no bullet hit Bhutto in the head.
This official explanation is challenged, not just by the newly released video, but by many in-person witnesses whose accounts of three pistol shots, at least one of which hit Bhutto, appear more consistent with the newly released video.
“The hospital was made to change its statement,” Rehman claimed.
“I believe the interior ministry is saying that she died from some concussion that may have taken place against the sunroof,” she said. “This is ridiculous, dangerous nonsense because it is a cover-up of what actually happened.”
Asif Ali Zardari, the husband of the murdered former Pakistani prime minister, has charged the Musharraf government of a cover-up. He suggests the responsibility for the assassination may rest with the president himself, with the actual murder possibly carried out by the military or the feared secret police Inter Services Intelligence Agency, the ISI.
Zardari, who replaced his wife as the head of the PPP, Pakistan’s largest party, has called for immediate elections, apparently in the belief that the public emotion following his wife’s assassination will sweep him into the presidency, replacing Musharraf.
According to Associated Press reports, Athar Minallah, a prominent opposition lawyer who is a member of the board that oversees Rawalpindi General Hospital, says the doctors called for an autopsy, but Rawalpindi police chief Saud Aziz refused.
The AP further reported Aziz requested an autopsy, saying he did not trust the Musharraf government to conduct a credible investigation.
Aziz has rejected the government’s account of his wife’s death as “lies.”
As WND previously reported, Baitullah Meshud, an alleged al-Qaida leader blamed by the Pakistan government for killing Bhutto, also denied any involvement.
“This is a conspiracy of the government, army and intelligence agents,” said Maulana Omar, a spokesman for Meshud from Pakistan’s tribal Waziristan area bordering Afghanistan.
Omar said the government faked a transcript released by the government of an alleged phone call in which Meshud congratulates a militant for the assassination.
Meanwhile, the Musharraf government has continued to reject calls for an international inquiry into the Bhutto assassination.