AL is historically the party which brought independence to the country. But before getting rid of war criminals and Pakistani collaborators, it submerged into corruption and nepotism. It was criminal offence on the part of AL to deny Bangladeshi people a good governance and progressive development at that time. The Paki collaborators and ISI took the chance and poisoned the mind a group of mid level Bangladeshi army officers and rest is history of emergence of BNP and Jamaat-Shibir.
BNP, without the supports of violent Islamist groups is of no consequence in the politics of the country. As in Zia’s time and so also today, it exists and thrives on Islamists, war criminals and their followers only. Prince of BNP is an ISI stooge. BNP’s unifying force is ‘Indo phobia’ and ‘Paki philia’ and Jamaat-Shibir’s unifying force is ‘Indo phobia’, ‘Islam’ and ‘Paki philia’.
Bangladesh is passing through a very critical phase of its history. For any civilized society, war criminals need to be tried and punished. For liberal Bangladeshis who want to see Bangladesh as progressive, secular and prosperous country, punishment of war criminals is very close to heart. AL, as per its last election manifesto, has shown some character to take on the war criminals in a determined way. Hanging of Quader Mollah is an example. But the country-wide violent protest by BNP, Jamaat-Shibir & Hefajat following the hanging of Quader Mollah has made the liberal Bangladeshis speechless.
How big is this group of liberal Bangladeshis? They are a small conglomeration of a group of cyber age youths who refused to be indoctrinated by Islam only, some open minded (educated or uneducated) progressive Muslims of the country and a few old intellectuals (who survived Quader Mollah and his masters). This conglomerate is non-aggressive and non-violent in nature and hardly will total up to a size of about five lakhs.
Against this let us remember that Hefajat has about forty lakhs of Madrassa students in thirty thousand Madrassas across the country. Add to this about another ten lakhs of Shibir supporters/members, as well as, ten lakhs strong Jamaat members/supporters. Mind it, these total sixty lakhs are violent and free of cost soldiers of war criminals/BNP/Islam. They get financial, doctrinal and organizational supports from Middle East. The present Bangladesh administration under AL is in difficult position to tackle these sixty lakhs of violent Islamists. So far AL has held the fort well. The bulk of general public is non-commitment in favour of Islamists. This has helped AL government in containing the post Quader hanging disturbance and lawlessness in Bangladesh. The picture is not as hopeless as BNP had expected (to get mileage in next election).
In this fateful situation, Bangladeshi Army is unlikely to step in. They are neither organized nor interested to burn their fingers. But they may extend covert supports to the Islamists. That danger always persists.
AL government should not give any attention to the lobbying of UN, US, UK, France and Turkey etc. in favour of the war criminals of Bangladesh. These so called self appointed contractors of ‘humanity’ will subject Bangladesh to a little bit of arm twisting also. But Bangladesh must tolerate the pain by clenching the teeth. Bangladesh has passed the ‘Quader Mollah Test’ with flying colours.
Who knows, possibly we are heading towards the ‘Second Liberation War’.
NB: I am no AL supporter; but do I have another choice? ‘Jai Bangla’ is not the monopoly of AL.