Sunday, August 26, 2007

Destabilizing Bangladesh? Who are “They” General Moeen?

A.H. JAFFOR ULLAH

GENERAL Moeen who is the power behind the present-day despotic regime in Bangladesh talked to the press importunately on August 24, 2007. He took out his valuable time from flood relief work to fly to Dhaka from countryside and talked to news media when he informed that this government has foiled an attempt to destabilize the nation. As per his allegation, he said millions of Takas were poured in to host the agitation. All newspapers published from Dhaka however wrote that the demonstration against the government was an instantaneous reaction to incidents that took place inside the DU campus.

Would the military General be more specific and tell the nation who pumped millions of Taka to stage the countrywide demonstration against the present-day government that came to power via a cantonment intrigue. If he fails to name names, then we will assume that it is just an empty talk by the General to blame others for the failures of Fakhruddin Ahmed Administration.

As a military man Moeen took courses in military academy where he spent inordinate amounts of time to learn the definition of “enemy.” Therefore, Moeen still has this military mentality of seeing the events of a complex world too simplistically. He is of the opinion that the “enemy” of the nation, whoever it may be, is pumping an exorbitant amount of money to hire people for demonstration. We heard the same allegation coming from none other than Mainul Husein who has taken the onus on him to defend and speak for the interim government. In his nationwide speech, Fakhruddin Ahmed also expressed the same sentiment hinting a conspiracy theory behind the non-planned demonstration against the government.

Bangladesh’s authorities are famous for coming up with amazing and mind-boggling stories to diffuse out serious problems that confront the nation. On August 21, 2004 grenade attacks on Awami League leaders Khaleda Zia appointed a lone one-man commission headed by Justice Jainul Abedin. In a short order the Judge came to the conclusion that the grenade attack was planned and executed by the "enemy" of the nation from a neighbouring nation in collaboration with the local miscreants. This time around, the army chief, General Moeen, who was promoted by this government (and talk about conflict of interest!), came to defend the action of Fakhruddin by saying that the masses were duped by Bangladesh’s enemy who infused inordinate sum of money to destabilize the government. All this comes in time when top politicians are either rotting in the jail or whose power were emasculated by some scorched-earth policy of the government that is being controlled from Kurmitola.

It seems as if, General Moeen had an epiphany at long last! He thus smells rats in the entire episode of recent country-wide mass demonstration called by none other than DU professors and students when the nation is under emergency rule. True to the nature of a despotic regime, Fakhruddin Administration sent police and secret service agents at the wee hours of the night to arrest five respected teachers. This government that came to power via a cantonment intrigue is finally showing its true color. They will use all the scare tactics to extract “information” from the five arrestees and then prove their point that a group of enemies are working behind to destabilize the nation; therefore, the government had no other option but to foil the “evil design" of the nation’s enemy.

Enough is enough! Will the senior most military officer be more specific and name names? People of Bangladesh would thank him enormously for letting them know who the real enemies of the country are. If he or Fakhruddin fails to specifically tell the masses that were behind masterminding the protest session that shook the mini-world of the oligarchy, then Bangladesh’s suffering masses won’t believe a thing that emanates from the horse’s mouth.

The good place for an army officer is cantonment. That is where General Moeen belongs. For the life of me I do not understand why he has to come to public in full regalia to tell what is good for this luckless nation of 150 million. Gen. Moeen and Fakhruddin should know that we live in an information age. Those days of fooling the people are almost over. Caveat Emptor! #

A.H. Jaffor Ullah, a researcher and columnist, writes from New Orleans, USA