This is not good news. Imagine if the governor of California or Texas were assassinated in broad daylight by his own bodyguard. Well, that’s what happened to Punjab Governor Salman Taseer in Pakistan. Of course, former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto was also assassinated, and Indian PM Indira Gandhi was assassinated by her own bodyguards, in large measure due to policies regarding Sikhs in the Indian portion of Punjab.
As for who is responsible, who knows? It could be a freelance jihadist, it could be al Quada, it could be Taliban, or it could be some of the Islamist elements of the Pakistani ISI. (Given the circumstances, I’m assuming it wasn’t Kashmiri nationalists, though stranger things have happened.) In any case, it’s bad news for a nuclear-armed nation that always seems to be inching ever closer to become a failed state.
I don’t have any particular insight into Pakistani, so I direct you to the odd piece by the ever-interesting Christopher Hitchens, which are long on insight and short on hope. Sometimes, as in the Middle East, there are simply no good options.