Intelligence agencies and senior Bush administration officials say their investigations do not indicate any conspiracy in the massacre of the royals in Nepal. All indications are, intelligence sources say, that "it was a case of one man gone horribly wrong,"-Crown Prince Dipendra, who gunned down his family before shooting himself.
The officials acknowledge that the tragedy could have a negative fallout, in that it could embolden the Maoists and encourage them to exploit it to end Nepal's fledgling democracy. Senior officials say the US is deeply concerned "as is the Nepali government about the Maoists, who have already tried to exploit the situation," pointing to the op-ed article in Kantipur by Maoist leader Baburam Bhattarai. An official said: "We believe Nepalis need to work on this problem and that the grievances the Maoist insurgency is based on need to be resolved through a peaceful democratic political process," adding that any such process "includes freedom of speech." The US continues to call for the immediate release of journalists arrested by the Nepali government on charges of treason. State Department spokesman Richard Boucher confirmed that the US had sent a representative to attend the arraignment of these journalists. Boucher noted that "in recent years Nepali press has become much more independent in reporting, and we have seen that independence as a good sign for Nepal's future."