Pakistan Weeps for Benazir Bhutto Hundreds of thousands line the funeral route for opposition leader and former prime minister Benazir Bhutto.
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Pakistan Weeps for Benazir Bhutto

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Pakistan Weeps for Benazir Bhutto

Pakistan Weeps for Benazir Bhutto

Pakistan Weeps for Benazir Bhutto

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Hundreds of thousands line the funeral route for opposition leader and former prime minister Benazir Bhutto.

BILL WOLFF (Announcer): From NPR News in New York, this is THE BRYANT PARK PROJECT.

(Soundbite of music)

JOHN FUGELSANG, host:

This is THE BRYANT PARK PROJECT, your home for news and information on the radio, online and on the InterWeb(ph). I'm John Fugelsang.

ALISON STEWART, host:

And I'm Alison Stewart.

It is Friday, December 28, 2007. I'm so glad you showed up this morning, John.

(Soundbite of laughter)

FUGELSANG: Why wouldn't I?

STEWART: We asked you to come guest host for a couple of days…

FUGELSANG: You know…

STEWART: …then all heck breaks out yesterday. You did a valued - good job during breaking news on your first day on the gig.

FUGELSANG: Thank you so much. I thought between Christmas and New Years we'll be all top 10 list, right, your highlights. No big news that week.

STEWART: Little did you know. All right. Well, today's show should be - well, I'm going to knock wood here.

(Soundbite of knocking on wood)

STEWART: A little less eventful. The news geek can be - he does like a breaking news.

FUGELSANG: And the news geek and you did a great job yesterday.

STEWART: Okay.

FUGELSANG: It's really amazing to watch the staff here.

STEWART: Yeah. We have a lot - a couple of things brewing on the show today. We're going to talk to the editors of a new magazine called Meatpaper. It's a journal about the joys of meat.

FUGELSANG: It's called Meatpaper?

STEWART: Meatpaper.

FUGELSANG: Okay.

STEWART: But here's the hitch. Ready?

FUGELSANG: Yeah.

STEWART: Edited by two former vegetarians.

FUGELSANG: Really?

STEWART: Yes.

FUGELSANG: Okay. Well, vegetarians for meat. That's a terrific support group. Well, with all the bad news over the past 24 hours we've been hearing, we're going to take a look at some of the good news stories from 2007.

STEWART: And one of our favorite news guys, media news guys, movie news guys is Daniel Holloway. He's got a good, like, (unintelligible). He's great when he reviews movies. Kind of like with the guy, your friend you talk to…

FUGELSANG: Right.

STEWART: …who tells you the way it really is.

FUGELSANG: The guy you respect about all this.

STEWART: Yeah. He is going to talk to us about "The Great Debaters" with Denzel Washington, and there will be blood. We'll also have Rachel Martin in a minute for today's headlines. But first, here is the BPP's Big Story.

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STEWART: Hundred thousands of mourners are lining the funeral procession route in the ancestral home of slain Pakistani opposition leader Benazir Bhutto, where she was just interred in here mausoleum. Even as violent reaction to her death continues throughout the rest of the country, at least 10 people reportedly died overnight during the unrest.

FUGELSANG: Now, Bhutto's death has complicated an already difficult political landscape in Pakistan. The country's January 8th parliamentary elections have been thrown into turmoil as opposition leaders yesterday called upon President Pervez Musharraf to resign. Former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, a one-time opponent of Bhutto's who became her ally, is also running for office and has indicated his party will be boycott this election if it does take place as scheduled.

STEWART: Now, leaders around the world including French President Nicolas Sarkozy and U.K. Prime Minister Gordon Brown escorted the country to - exhorted the country to proceed with elections as planned. And the government says there are no plans to postpone them at this time.

FUGELSANG: Now, President Bush also urged Pakistan - a vital ally to the West in the war on terror - to fight extremists looking to undermine democracy.

President GEORGE W. BUSH: We urge them to honor Benazir Bhutto's memory by continuing with the democratic process for which she so bravely gave her life.

FUGELSANG: The problem is an election in Pakistan right now could cause even more chaos because there's no obvious strong successor to Bhutto within her Pakistani Peoples Party. And there could be very little time to find a replacement. So that means if Musharraf were to win, it could appear as a victory by default which might already weaken his standing. Already supporters of Bhutto, who was expected to beat Musharraf in the election, are blaming her murder on his government, which they say didn't do enough to protect her.

STEWART: Benazir Bhutto will be buried beside her father. She is survived by her husband and three teenage children. We should also mention, 28 people died at the rally where Benazir Bhutto was killed and over 100 were injured.

We'll have more on the story in a moment when we speak with Pakistani blogger Basim Usmani live from Lahore.

FUGELSANG: That is the BPP's Big Story. Now, here is Rachel Martin with even more news.

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