Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, 19, has resumed his college career after an extraordinarily intense trip home to Pakistan, where he endured the assassination of his mother and the new burden of following in her footsteps as chairman of the country’s largest opposition political party.
But he would not get to return to his dormitory preserve at Christ Church, one of the poshest colleges at Oxford University, before facing off with the notoriously irrepressible London press corps.
Despite receiving “somewhat of a rough ride from the U.K. press pack,” as The London Times put it, he was clearly well prepared to be in the saddle, scoring strong sound bites and bits of praise for his overall performance (”accomplished,” “confident“).
When they pushed on his lack of experience, he conceded the obvious and focused on the future like a P.R. pro. “Although I admit that my experience to date is limited, I intend to learn,” he said.
Given a chance to speak on behalf of the opposition, he found a worthy line, too: “I fear for my country,’’ he said, according to Bloomberg News. “I fear if free and fair elections are not held, it may disintegrate.’’
By the way, he wasn’t handed the title of chairman of the Pakistan People Party “like some piece of family furniture,” he said, and neither did he covet it.
“I do not claim to have any aspiration,” Mr. Bhutto said, according to BBC News. “I was called and I stepped up to do what I was asked to do.”
And at one point, he mocked his questioners for being fooled by a prankster impersonating him on Facebook, the social networking site. And he did so “gently,” The Times of London said.
That affair — and not various threats on his life — represented his main concern now that he’s back in college, he told the paper: “I fear more for my privacy.”
via//New York Times