Our own worst enemies
WHO needs outside invaders when we can be our own worst enemies? True, we do not need the Mongols or the Huns or the Vikings to land at our shores to obliterate us. We can do it ourselves. How, you ask? Well, our failures and our indecisiveness are always there to strengthen the hands of the enemy. And by God, we can become such good enemies of ourselves, and destroy our achievements with such precision and perfection that the world often looks at us with bewilderment.
And why shouldn't they? We have a track record of carrying out mindless acts of mass murders on a number of occasions. And, not surprisingly, the mystery remained either unsolved or partially solved. The whole lot of deshi and bideshi sleuths kept scratching their heads and then disappeared out of sheer frustration. Exaggeration? Go, and read the files on many incidents of bomb blasts and killings -- Jessore Udichi bombing, Ramna Batamul bombing, Mymensingh cinema halls bombing, August 21 grenade attack at Bangabandhu Avenue, Sylhet grenade attack on Mr. Kibria and the UK High Commissioner Mr. Anwar.
After 1971, we have turned into a nation of guessers. In 1971, we did not have to guess. We knew who our enemies were and we also knew what to do with them. But since December 16, we have been faltering again and again in identifying our friends and our enemies. Often we have turned our face from our genuine friends, but again, hugged sworn enemies. And today, we are paying the price for this.
Today, amnesia has gotten hold of the entire nation. Maybe, we have been affected by the "Whodunit" virus. The afflicted ones keep on wondering -- whodunit? Right at the moment we are wondering what is wrong with us? What is going on actually? Who is in charge and who is in control? What forces are out there, hell-bent on destroying the country from within? These are unpleasant thoughts but these keep coming back because of the things happening in various sectors.
The sector called politics is perhaps at its lowest ebb in Bangladesh at the moment. Most of our socio-economic ills have been created by negative politics and cutthroat politicians. Sorry brothers, but it is the truth. Can't blame you, really. Politics perhaps has taken more lives across the world than nature or animals. Don't forget that wars were and still are created by politicians.
Many historians believe that the Second World War continued for five years because of Churchill's ego, not Hitler's madness. The dropping of atom bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki was a political decision, not a military strategy. And if Bhutto had agreed to let Sheikh Mujibur Rahman become the prime minister of Pakistan then there would have been no genocide in East Pakistan, though Bangladesh would have emerged eventually.
So, it was bad politics that resulted in the deaths of 3 million people for the creation of Bangladesh. But, bloodshed has not stopped a bit in this country. It is not invaders but we who play the central part in the murder plots, either for our own interest or for the interest of our foreign masters. Here money plays a vital role as well. There are extremists in our midst, who would kill in the name of religion, and money. There are crooked politicians in our midst, who would kill in the name of politics, and money. Therefore, the combination turns lethal and unholy when we fail to break their backbone early on.
But, why have we failed? Are these people omnipotent ... unassailable ... invincible ... are these people unstoppable? Are they more powerful than the entire state machinery? Are they above the laws of the land? If not, then why can't we do away with them for good? How many of them are there? What is the number of the masterminds ... two hundred ... five hundred ... one thousand ...? Why do we allow one thousand masterminds to stand up against 15 crore people?
To say the least, we are passing through rather very dangerous times. We hear things we do not want to hear. We see things we do not want to see. We know things we do not want to know. It is, therefore, no wonder everyone keeps whispering in everyone's ears that worse days are coming ... so be prepared ... you have not seen the end of misery and bloodbath ... send your children abroad ... go yourself ... this is not a safe country anymore ... this is not a liveable country anymore, and so on.
But, why? Why must they utter such terrible words? Why must fear haunt us every step? Why shall we have to leave the country? Alas! There is none to give us an answer. This overwhelming silence is scarier than any answer whatsoever.