Tag Archive for 1971

Sarmila Bose: The return of Goebbels

The ongoing war criminals’ trials are not only being opposed by groups within Bangladesh, but also from several diverse and questionable corners of the world. Leader of the opposition,Khaleda Zia, is on a road march to save her political allies…

Please Deselect International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) from the List of Honourees for 1971

According to media reports, the Government of Bangladesh, at its 40th anniversary of national independence, has taken the initiative to honour a number of individuals and organisations for their contributions during the Liberation War of 1971. While it is indeed a commendable move on the part of the government, attention of the concerned authorities also needs to be drawn urgently in respect of one particular organisation (ie, Geneva based International Commission of Jurists – ICJ) chosen for this unique honour. It is not clear what considerations prompted the government to select ICJ, but based on the review of one of ICJ’s widely quoted Report on 1971, the decision to honour ICJ appears to be an ill-advised and ill-judged one.

Briefly, ICSF’s review found the ICJ-report heavily biased and problematic on a number of aspects, such as legal, factual, strategic and diplomatic. For example, it concludes that the then leadership in 1971 were “not entitled in international law” to declare independence, effectively nullifying legitimacy of Bangladesh. Moreover, the Report unfairly equated crimes committed by the Pakistani army and local collaborators against the people of Bangladesh with that of sufferings of the Biharis. Grossly distorting the facts, the Report categorically stated that both sides in the war committed similar “international crimes”. These are but a few of the problematic findings of this Report among many, and ICJ has never retracted its position publicly. It is our understanding that honouring ICJ would tantamount to endorsement of its findings on the part of the Government. Therefore, it is our humble request that the Government review its decision and deselect ICJ from the list of honourees. There may still be time to take rectifying measures, before the nation is left with an irrevocable bestowal of gratitude to an entity which did not deserve it in the first place.

Remembering a forgotten genocide

Today marks 37 years of independence for a tiny country I love, a country that gave me birth before it was itself born, a country founded on the belief that freedom is precious and worth dying for, a country of…

Bangladesh Genocide Archive Online: An Appeal

Our heartfelt congratulations to everyone involved in this mammoth initiative. A solid contribution indeed; one of the decisive early steps that would take us a long way towards justice for 1971. As said, it is a “continuing and collaborative” project.…