Category Archives: Foreign Matters

Bangladesh-India: Conflicts over land and maritime boundaries

Syeed Ahamed

Published in the Daily Star Forum on 5 September 2011.

This piece revisits the lessons learnt from two exceptional boundary disputes to highlight some policy priorities.

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Sufi of Suburbia: Struggles of a Muslim identity in Bangladesh

Shahana Siddiqui.

Published in Forum on 7 February 2010.

This piece takes a journey of self-discovery while trying to understand the notion of the Bengali Muslim identity.

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Felani’s hanging body over the road to connectivity

Rumi Ahmed.

Published on 19 January 2011 in 

This piece discussed extrajudicial killing by the Indian Border Security Forces at the Indo-Bangla border.

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Towards a kinder, gentler peacekeeping

by Tazreena Sajjad

Published in the Daily Star on 25 February.

This piece discusses Bangladeshi women’s participation in the UN peace missions.

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A new start for India and Bangladesh?

by Asif Saleh

Published in the Guardian on 19 January 2010.

The Bangladeshi prime minister’s visit to India won only vague promises. It is time to demand a more equal relationship.

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Hoi hoi, hai hai, or don’t believe the hype

by Jyoti Rahman

Published in BDnews24 on 17 January 2010.

The Prime Minister returned from India to a ‘showdown’ arranged by the Awami League to receive her at the airport. At least on TV, it seemed as if she had returned from exile, not a state visit to a friendly country. Balancing this hoi hoi, the opposition BNP has said that the PM had abandoned national interests in New Delhi. No doubt we’ll see more hai hai.

To cut to the chase, my view is, ‘Don’t believe the hype’. As far as Bangladesh is concerned, there really is nothing in the communiqué that is irreversible, or that has altered things significantly in one direction or the other.

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Bangladesh: a verdict and a lesson

Jalal Alamgir
Published by openDemocracy on 13 Feb 2009.

The homegrown embrace of democracy in Bangladesh represents both a historic demonstration of its people’s will and an injunction to the west.

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Two Choices,Two Worlds

Mridul Chowdhury

Published in the Forum (September 2008 )

American elections have always fascinated me — somewhat analogous to the suspense and the excitement of seeing an Olympic race, with the added benefit of following it for several months and then watching the finale over a bowl of pop-corn or chanachur, depending on whether I am over there or at home.

The fact that I am not an American and cannot vote gives me more reason to take only an “academic” interest in US’s elections, with the implicit notion that it is not going to make too much of a difference as to who wins or loses — they are all beholden to the same interest groups anyway.

This time, however, my personal experience in following the race has been strikingly different — I feel that the stakes for the world may be much higher than any of us may imagine. The results of the US’s elections this year will have far-reaching consequences on peace and stability across the globe, and Bangladesh will inevitably be affected as well. Continue reading

How Will the Global Economic Slowdown Effect Bangladesh?

Published in the Forum (May 2008 )

These are difficult times for the global economy. Economic growth is weakening around the world, reflecting the fallout from the sub-prime mortgage crisis and associated financial market turbulence. A recession appears to be imminent in the United States — the question now is about its severity and length. Other developed economies are also expected to slow. As are, to a lesser extent, major emerging economies in Asia. And the slowdown is happening in a period of significant inflationary pressure, complicating the job of macroeconomic policymakers.

What has caused the slowdown? What is the global economic outlook? What is the outlook for Bangladesh? If the global slowdown is much more protracted than the current forecasts, what would be the impacts on Bangladesh? Continue reading

“I was conned”

Asif Saleh

Published in the Forum (December 2007) 

Two months ago, when I went to see Imran Khan present his case to an audience in England, my prime interest was in asking what made him support General Pervez Musharraf in the first place? I did not have to wait very long. When the Q & A started, that was the one of the first questions asked.

Khan’s reply to the question was short and apologetic: “I was conned.”

“I thought he was the messiah who had come to save us from the political corruption that ruled our country for years. But pretty soon I realised that was not the case.” Continue reading