Thursday, March 31, 2005

BANGLADESH: Dilemma for Donors

Clearly, now an uneasy relationship exists between the donor community and Bangladesh. By defending the Islamists openly, now the ruling coalition has shown its true colour. The right wing Islamist orientation of this coalition was known, since it came to power in October 2001. But no one expected such a brazen defence of Islamist forces by the top leadership of the country. Now it is amply clear, why Islamists have been operating with such ease in Bangladesh and why despite orders from the Prime Minister, Bangla Bhai, the operations commander of JMJB was not arrested. Probably, the order was never seriously meant to be implemented. Bangladesh seems to be exploiting the helplessness of the donor community, who think that if they withdraw from the country, situation would worsen. It may become another breeding ground of terrorism like Afghanistan. But, by continuing their assistance also donors have not been able to check the increasing hold of Islamists on the Bangladesh society. In fact, Islamists have now started attacking NGOs whom they think to be agents of Western powers......More