At the airport Bahawalpur in Eastern Pakistan, at 17. August 1988 best flying conditions: five miles visibility, clear skies and only a slight breeze from the southwest. Nevertheless, the Lockheed C-130 Hercules with the Callsign "Pakistan-1 on" only a few minutes after the Start perpendicular to the floor.
All 31 men on Board are dead. Including Mohammed Zia ul Haq, the President and the military dictator of Pakistan, the US Ambassador, Arnold L. Raphael, a Brigadier General in the US Army named Herbert Wassom, and officers of the Pakistani military and two members of the Crew.
Zia and his Entourage had visited that day, a demonstration of battle tanks type M-1 Abrams; by plane, it should go back in the capital, Islamabad. There were several machines, but Zia invited Raphael and Wassom, to keep him company. The C-130 had only loaded the VIP passenger capsule as well as some models of aircraft. And two crates of mangoes, which was obtained by the President shortly before departure as a gift.
In the 1980s, Pakistan was at the centre of world politics After the Soviet invasion in Afghanistan, the country was in South Asia, one of the most important allies of the United States. Pakistan received money and arms shipments to support the Mujahideen fighting against the Soviets. At the same time, the conflict with India smoldered to the border region of Kashmir. Pakistan was suspected pursuit of nuclear weapons. Of course, Zia ul Haq was a military dictator of the time of his reign, always the enemies in their own country.
the cause of The crash on 17. August 1988, was never clarified. Neither of the technical defects on the aircraft for about one missile hit could prove beyond doubt. The eye-witnesses had seen no fire or the like. The machine I first lost a lot of altitude, then ascended again, before you crashed.
The Pakistani side, led the investigations; the U.S. Department of defense and specialists from Lockheed supported you. The FBI took never own investigations, despite the fact that two high-ranking American officials were killed.
Pakistanis and Americans could not agree, however. Their conclusions could hardly have been more different: The U.S. experts suspected a mechanical failure of the Elevator, as he was already occurred in several incidents with this aircraft type. Prove it did not, however, because the wreck was not much left. The Pakistanis, "a criminal act or Sabotage" had led to the crash. But there was little evidence.A poison gas attack on the pilots in the Cockpit?
so Why were killed Zia and the rest of the men on Board? In the wreck, they found abnormal amounts of phosphorus, antimony and chlorine – they come in explosives, but normally not in the interior of aircraft. A poison gas attack on the pilots in the Cockpit, triggered by a small Explosion that would be possible.
could Only be one of the bodies was neat: - General Herbert Wassom. The rest were largely burned (Zia were identified on the basis of its teeth) or had to be buried according to Muslim custom, at the latest, 24 hours after the death.
Given the open-ended questions, various conspiracy theories have spread immediately. Especially various secret services were suspected. For example, a cockpit crew with poison gas off, requires Know-how. But also an Inside Job, it is conceivable, because the military is acting in Pakistan, often as a "state within a state".
you have to Ask to the beneficiaries of Zia's death, the views of the Soviet Union. Here are several motives would be applicable: Pakistan's dictator, fought the Soviet Intervention in Afghanistan. The KGB would have had the necessary Knowledge and resources to perform such an Operation. Since the Soviet Union was in August of 1988, however, already on the retreat from Afghanistan, this Version is quite unlikely.Zia promoted Islamism
the United States had at the end of the 1980s, problems with Pakistan. Zia had promoted in Pakistan since the beginning of his reign, in 1977, the Islamism – for example, he led parts of the Sharia as the governing law, and organised the taxes according to the Islamic model. The United States feared, therefore, that Zia wanted to establish in Afghanistan a fundamentalist System – what the Americans feared maybe even more than a Communist. The Pakistani nuclear program was not also in the interest of the Americans.
On the list of Suspects as traditional arch-enemy of Pakistan, India. Its Premier Rajiv Gandhi maintained the best relations with the Afghan Communists and had no interest in Pakistan as nuclear. The Indian intelligence was well-known for actions in the whole of South Asia.
In Pakistan, there was finally some actors who benefited from the death of Zia and almost the entire leadership of the military, especially the family of Bhutto. Zia ul Haq had overthrown in 1977, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, as Prime Minister, and two years later, under the hypocritical accusations execute. His son, Murtaza founded in 1979, the militia, "al-Zulfiqar" (sword), to avenge the death of his father and to overthrow Zia. Murtazas sister, Benazir Bhutto, in turn, was only a few months after the plane crash, the new Prime Minister of Pakistan.
20 years after Zia's violent death, the Pakistani author Mohammed Hanif published his book "A case of exploding mangoes". It is a Satire, which processes various conspiracy theories. The title refers to a speculation that had arisen after the investigations of the Accident. The Remains of the mangoes were found also tracks that drew the suspicion of a possible attack with nerve gas. The mangoes were only delivered shortly before departure, contributed to the spread of this theory.
the crash of The "Pakistan-1" will probably never be fully explained – even 30 years later, the circumstances of which remain obscure. The conspiracy theories but a look at the tangle of interests of the great powers in the Cold war in South Asia. And if, in fact, a head of state should be died by exploding mangoes, that would be at least unique.
you will find "world history" on Facebook. We are happy about a Like.