Tuesday, February 9, 2010

The Rats and the People

The Daily Star is caught between a rock and a hard place.

On the one hand, it has to make the right noises about the killers of Sheikh Mujib to please the ruling party and its thugs. Besides, the editor and his cohorts are sympathetic to the Awami League, if not actually Awami Leaguers themselves.

On the other hand, Mahfuz Anam and his wife have to please the European donors as well, and Europe is against the death penalty. The Star dare not say openly that the death penalty should have been commuted to life imprisonment. The office will be raided the next day by armed thugs of the ruling party and by every intellectual in Bangladesh.

This example clearly shows the hypocrisy of our ruling elite: they seek the approval of foreigners, but subscribe to local prejudices. They pretend to be liberal, when they are anything but. They support two tyrannies, the House of Mujib and the House of Zia, all in the name of democracy and the people.
All they want is to advance their careers and make their moolah, and sound a bit like their European masters.

They are like those rats that were given contradictory pleasure-pain stimuli simultaneously: they showed clear neurotic symptoms. Our scatophagous elite receive double stimuli, one from abroad and one from here; only they are not neurotic. They are perfectly sane: totally unscrupulous, but perfectly sane.

However, it has been a pathetic – or perhaps ennobling - spectacle that the execution of the assassins of the beloved 'Father of the Nation", Bangabandhu, has been greeted by not an atom of enthusiasm on the part of the people who are supposed to love him so: all excitement and anticipation have been concentrated in the bloodthirsty, intellectual elite. As Lawrence Ziring pointed out, Bangladesh will never represent Bangladeshis. The former have no affinity with the latter, and no more apodictic display has been in evidence than the apathy of the people to the 'celebrated' and 'long-awaited' executions, celebrated and long-awaited by a bigoted microscopic minority we miscall 'the nation'.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Why do you write? to serve a good purpose or to just to write vitriol? Show me one good thing that has come of your writing. Are you a journalist or just an arm-chair Op-Ed person? Definitely not a journalist because you write without taking responsibility. Hence, you must be an Op-Ed person. No good is seen, so it must be for vitriol.