Ask for a piece on Pakistan and Bangladesh during December and you’re likely to get something about the 1971 wars — note the plural, because the eastern part of the subcontinent simultaneously experienced an inter-ethnic civil war and ethno-communal cleansing, genocide, inter-state conventional war and a war of national liberation, all climaxing in the crisp Bengali winter of 1971. Naeem Mohaiemen’s seven part series is an example, covering many aspects of that fateful year. Let me skip 1971 in this post. Instead, I’ll begin by marking the other December anniversary, one that will have a particular relevance for Pakistan and Bangladesh in 2013. And I’ll note the parallels between the post-1971 developments in the two wings of former United Pakistan.
Deep Politics, Part 2: One-eyed world of the “civil war” roadmap
by Faruk Wasif; translated by Tibra Ali
In boxing, fighters need to be alert of each other’s every move. The hunter too targets his prey using only one eye. He is not interested in widening his field of vision. But freedom fighters cannot afford to just focus on eliminating the enemy, they must also keep an eye on the political and ideological aspects of the situation. They need to widen their field of view of the world. The political chase is not the same as giving chase to a band of robbers. Continue reading
“How do we characterize or categorize the people of Shahbag? Who are the people of Shahbag? … What is the class character of this group, what excites or drives this group? Who they were during different periods of our history- how they were represented during different historical milestone of Bangladesh.”
© Arif Hafiz
This image has been doing the rounds. It’s an unlikely rumor because if things got to that stage, Gen Bhuiyan (IKB) would have mounted a coup. Continue reading
Fareez (author’s son), Bangladesh National Parliament Building, December 30, 2012. Photo: Zakir Kibria
I condemn ALL violence. Continue reading
On that day, no soul shall be wronged; and you shall not be rewarded aught but that which you did. (The Quran, 36: 54).
Surah Yasin is usually recited in Muslim households when someone passes away. The above-quoted ayaat from the surah has been in my mind lately. I want to believe those words, not just in the promised day of reckoning, but here and now, in this People’s Republic of ours.