THE GROWING EXTREMIST THREAT FOR THE US TO SEE
The spectacular commando type attack on a police microbus near Trishal two days ago, the killing of a policeman by the attackers and the snatching away of two prisoners of the banned Islamist and extremist outfit, JMB, by the attackers, is revealing of the extraordinary comeback of an organization whose strengths were wrongly guessed to have been sapped. That the JMB remains a formidable outfit with potentials to carry out more such attacks, has been clearly manifest through this incident.
No less eye catching is the report in the media on Tuesday that a US based leading source of critical information, HIS Jane’s Inc., found the Islami Chatra Shibir, the student wing of the Bangladesh Jaamat-e-Islami, as one of the world’s ten most active non-state armed groups in 2013.
And of course there was also noted last week a call from the second in command of al-Queda that urged Bangladeshis to rise against the oppressors of Muslims in Bangladesh. Though the genuineness of the threat is being investigated, hardly there is doubt in concerned and knowledgeable circles about its authenticity. The coming and going on of al-Queda top leaders to Bangladesh during the regimes of the BNP in the past were well known. Recently, the arrests in Bangladesh of terrorists of Pakistani origin and the latter’s established links to al-Queda, should make it amply clear that the threat to Bangladesh from Islamist extremists of different brands, is sharply on the rise. As a matter of fact, the worst domestic violence that Bangladesh witnessed in its post independence period in recent months, were perpetrated by the Jaamat-e-Islami. It is well known this political force is doing proxy for al-Queda in Bangladesh for all practical purposes.
Therefore and in these circumstances, the United States with its declared commitment to fight terrorism and extremism of all shades, should see the merit of fully supporting the present government of Bangladesh. The incumbent government led by the Bangladesh Awami League (BAL) is bent on establishing secular governance in Bangladesh and to resist firmly the rise of Islamist and militant anti democratic forces . Therefore, it should be in the strategic interests of the US to stand by the side of the new government in Bangladesh in every sense.
It was learnt that earlier the US was for regarding Jammat-e-Islami as a surface party committed to democratic politics. But the on going activities of this party in Bangladesh ought to remove this elusion from the minds of US policy makers. They should see the Jaamat for what it is and support any move by the government to ban, restrict or regulate the activities of the Jaamat and its subsidiary organizations.
MARCH 10, 2014