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"This Is A Big Win For Al-Qaeda...The World Has To Pay Attention."

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In the wake of Benazir Bhutto's assassination, the starkest analysis was offered by political analyst Raghida Dergham:

MIKA BRZEZINSKI: What concerns you about what might transpire over the coming days?

RAGHIDA DERGHAM: The most important concern for all, not only for the followers of Benazir Bhutto...is the chaos that might come around and cause Pakistan to become a failed state. Right now what is needed, and what's happening actually, discussing how to manage the situation so that the anger does not get the control of the streets, therefore lose control of the country...the talk is how to hold the country together and how much Musharraf, the current president of Pakistan, has to do and in effect what he has to do is think freshly outside of the box and think of what are the steps that would lead pakistan into sort of a unity government with technocrats. This is a big win for al Qaeda and it's a big win at the expense of Pakistan. The world has to pay attention, not only the Pakistanis because as you also mentioned, Mika, this is also a woman who stood up to them and they made sure that she does not stay alive to lead the country.

MIKA BRZEZINSKI: And also at the expense of the struggling democratic process...what do you make of what could happen to these elections that were scheduled for January 8? Can they go on?

RAGHIDA DERGHAM: It looks quite unlikely that the elections will be on time, I think that would be possibly one of the things they are considering right now...which is in my opinion quite unlikely. It's too soon. Then the other option of possibly going back to martial law. That would be quite disastrous for Musharraf because he will be accused of things he may not have done.

As of right now, there has been no declaration of martial law. Military forces and riot police are said to be on "red alert."