Of course, Hillary knew Benazir. Hillary knew everybody who counted. But Benazir was "the only celebrity," according to Kathlerine Q. Seelye on the Times political blog, The Caucus, whom, Mrs. Clinton said she stood in a rope line to see." Of course, that was before Hillary was Hillary. She and Chelsea were visiting London three years before the secret service would come into their lives. Benazir was, already then, big time.
When Hillary was first lady she visited Pakistan and Ms. Bhutto, at that point prime minister, hosted her at a luncheon. That's the occasion from which she dates herself as a friend: "I knew her as a leader for a dozen years. I knew her as someone who was willing to take risks to pursue democracy on behalf of the people of Pakistan." Now that's she dead everybody (See Marcella Bombardieri on the Boston Globe's website; Fernando Suarez, "From the Road" on CBSNews.com; Anne E. Kornblut on washingtonpost.com) is saying roughly that. But it is not at all the complete truth. Anyway, Hillary wouldn't be pals with someone who wasn't a democrat, would she?
Do you want an accurate and at least truthful appraisal of Bhutto look for one written before she was dead. Like "Being Benazir Bhutto," TNR, November 14, 2007, just six weeks ago, by Josh Kurlantzick. The fact is that she was as corrupt as they come, or as corrupt as her father and her husband. And Bhutto has not given her life for democracy, as Clinton insisted. She gave it for power. Of course, the other presidential candidates are mouthing the same verbiage. Even Biden and Obama, who know better.
Hillary "stayed in touch throughout the years." I wonder how. "We met on several occasions, always talked about her commitment to bringing democracy back to Pakistan," as if it ever had it. "We talked about our children." Sure. Safe topic. Why not?