Saturday, January 30, 2010

A Need For Anamnesis (essay)

A Need For Anamnesis

(click above for essay)

Western education is efficient: it makes you forget your history, culture and heritage. We don't know our own political philosophy, our own poetry and our own past. We need to get it all back.

Friday, January 29, 2010

evil will be defeated

Where do the good and the just and the brave go after they die? They are remembered in our hearts.

The evil can hang them or blast them or gas them, they still do not die. Evil endures, but never prevails, for such men as they: who know it their highest duty in life is to combat evil.

Evil may seem to triumph today; it may seem to be omnipotent now; tomorrow is its funeral.

Boast, evil, boast of your evil! This is your night for revelry and filth: in your momentary triumph you feel yourself everlasting! Boast, evil, boast! You shall not boast long.

For the angels are on the side of the good, and when these die, they carry the just to their abode in our hearts, and to heaven.

Friday, January 22, 2010

reverse circumcision

Sheikh Hasina has trumpeted the banning of jihad – Islam's sixth pillar. She has boasted that she'll never permit anybody to wage jihad from Bangladeshi soil, thereby violating one of the six major precepts of Islam.

But there's more.

And it has been recently leaked to the press (who are shy of publishing the information) that she plans gradually to prohibit – circumcision.

But there's more.

She'll not only prohibit circumcision, she'll even reverse it in the next few years.

Since the doctors all belong to her party, she'll have no trouble making sure no circumcisions are carried out in hospitals.

That leaves the informal sector: how to snip the snipping there? Cabinet ministers have been discussing the subject with bureaucrats and the police. So far, no solution has been reached, but a model inspired by Indira Gandhi is emerging.

The plan is this: men will be picked up at random and then REVERSE circumcision will be performed on them.

What is reverse circumcision? It's a technique perfected in Zimbabwe for those men who regret losing their foreskin. Quite simply, a surgeon takes a foreskin from a donor and grafts it on the dick of the recipient. Drugs are then administered to prevent organ-rejection (but this is only for rich patients; poor patients simply have to tolerate rejection and kick the bucket).

A few married women murmured disapproval, saying that it would reduce sexual pleasure; since Sheikh Hasina is a widow, the dissentients were quietly ignored. Besides, it is believed that many staunch party members have had foreskin-implantation as a symbol of rejection of Islam.

At one such high-level meeting, it was queried where so many foreskins would come from if circumcision is banned in the country.

Pat came the answer.

From Israel.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

attacking the sixth pillar

The present government has illegalised the sixth pillar of Islam - jihad. Which pillar will be banned next: namaaz, zakat, hajj...?

You cannot prohibit jihad in a Muslim country: there will always be intrepid and pious souls ready to come to the rescue of their coreligionists in other parts of the world.

What will happen is foreseeable: a government that tries to reward treachery, and punish loyalty, will end up on the jihadis' list of people to attack. So far, Bangladesh - and the Awami League - has attracted the least well-trained of the jihadis from the Muslim diaspora.

That is about to change.

The next lot will be more thorough, better-skilled, better-armed...they will be inspired by the sight of a supposedly Muslim prime minister holding hands with a member of a Hindu dynasty.

If the Taliban can fight the world's most powerful military machine, think how easily similar groups can take on the Bangladesh armed forces. Pakistan has one of the most highly-trained armies, and yet the Taliban and al-Quaeda have been inflicting heavy casualties.

The Bangladesh armed forces will have no choice but to join hands with the jihadis. Even if the present government bribes and politicizes the upper ranks of the armed forces, the lower ranks will not be bought or coerced.

Just think about this simple truism: you can't bribe everyone, and you can't kill everyone, and you can't intimidate everyone.

This is going to be one long, bloody year.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Three Poems

(click above for the poems)

Badminton is very popular in this country - it can only be played in winter because at other times it is too windy. So, it's a winter sport. Winter is a metaphor for life's end, but here it becomes the opposite: a metaphor of vitality, strength and youth. sunset at khagrachari was written in the south-eastern is a place of breathtaking beauty, and the details were there right before my eyes: however, the day was ending and the rising smoke seemed to embody the death of the day...Time was clearly motivated by love ... and the end of love in death. But the focus is not on death, but on the present.

Friday, January 8, 2010

The Sixth Pillar of Islam

Since jihad is the sixth pillar of Islam, the present government's avowed intention to prevent jihadis from entering India or finding sanctuary in Bangladesh is scandalously anti-Islamic. While other non-Muslim governments kill and maim Muslims with impunity, we are going to hogtie them within a thicket of laws.
No Bangladeshi Muslim, therefore, need abide by these laws, or obey the government in these matters. Al-Ghazali had said "Better twenty years of injustice than one hour of chaos". But he was referring to Sultanate rule, not to democracy, which he would have found shocking, with its change of government every five years and an opposition criticizing the government (criticism is treasonous for al-Ghazali).

However, we are not all brave or capable enough to be jihadis: but there are others who are. Living in an Indian and American colony, if they wish to strike at the nation, they have every authority to do so. "Know that the unbelievers are your enemies," states the Koran. If the country had been an autocracy, then things would have been different: al-Ghazali's and al-Mawardi's interdiction would have applied. But that is not the case.

If we are unable to perform the sixth pillar ourselves, we can at least – as least – pray for those who are, and offer public prayers on Fridays for their souls and their success. We can offer public or private sacrifices for the nobility of their cause. Between 1991 and 2001, nearly two million Iraqi children were murdered by Tony Blair and Bill Clinton – with the full acquiescence and knowledge of the western word, and the criminal United Nations (whose representative was killed in Baghdad, possibly by a relative or father of one of these dead children).

With so much hostility against Muslims, so many dead Muslims from Iraq to Gaza, Kashmir to Somalia, to prohibit the performance of the sixth pillar is an act of the utmost impiety. If not within Muslim polities, then against the oppressors, Muslim should have unfettered freedom from their coreligionists to wage a just war.

I hope those who read this will offer at least a prayer for the jihadis tonight. Tomorrow….

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Sir Flunky

When Westerners met African and Native American chiefs, they would ply them with whiskey and baubles - beads of various colours, worthless to any 'civilised' person, but which greatly impressed the natives.

The baubles used to impress the Muslim chiefs are a little different, a little more abstract, but baubles nevertheless.

Two flunkies - both thick as thieves with the mass murderer Bill Clinton - received baubles.One received the Nobel Prize ('trash and trinkets'), and another received the knighthood. The former was Mohammed Yunus, who stole the idea of microfinance and passed it for his own while cultivating ties with western leaders. The latter is the flunky known as Fazle Abed, founder of BRAC. Apparently, flunkyism runs in the family. In 1913, one of his ancestors received the knighthood as well.

At least, Rabindranath had the decency to refuse the knighthood after the Jallianwalla Bagh massacre.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

To Dance Upon The Air

(click above for article)

Five former army officers will hang within the next few weeks in Bangladesh, raising deep questions about a people's right to protection from a tyrannical executive in the context of John Locke's political philosophy.


"Seven High Court judges refused to hear the lower court's verdict: they declared themselves 'embarrassed' without explaining why. The names of these High Court judges should be engraved in gold – not golden – letters in the premises of the High Court. To any student of law, the reason for their refusal was transparently obvious – they did not wish to embroil the judiciary in a moral issue that had no legal redress without, at the same time, politicizing the judiciary. The distinction between law and morality has been clearly drawn by Immanuel Kant. The best illustration of the discrepancy was provided by Chief Justice Taney. A devout Catholic, he had emancipated all his slaves; yet, when the Dred Scott case came up, he had to assert that 'a black man has no rights'. This decision undermined the prestige of the Supreme Court: yet Taney was merely stating the law, keeping his deeply held belief that slavery was an evil to himself. The seven judges of the Bangladesh Supreme Court similarly, no doubt, wished to draw a line between morality and the law: this, they felt, was a moral issue, not a legal one, certainly not an open and shut case of murder. "