As the War Crimes Trials stumble on, we learn more about each other. Perhaps we do not share that which we learn on authorised platforms for want of receiving that favourite slur of the Progressives 'tui razakar'.
We tend to ride along with the dominant school of fish, no matter how dubious their foundations and capabilities. this regularly gets us into stupid pickles that we should have learnt to avoid. Peeling away once emotionally invested is a difficult thing to do, but becomes necessary for integrity. I'm interested in hearing changed minds as events unfold and multifold truths become apparent.
The Bangladesh State has taken the elderly Prof Ghulam Azam into custody and is proceeding to neglect his health and well being. I find it very cruel that a group who pride themselves of secular and liberal virtue cannot find it in themselves to act according to their very own principles. I pray that he keeps strong and is able to deliver his truth with directness and clarity when the time comes.
The prosecution side is mislaying witnesses and holding up proceedings, much to the presiding judicial panel's annoyance. Even Shahriar Kabir, a key mover in the War Crimes Push is exasperated. For those of us interested in a spot of epistemic disobedience and scratching the surface, I recommend a deep investigation of the Nirmul Commission, which raised the political currency of Trials during the first post-Ershad BNP government.
Some of the more well-read web-based proponents of the trials have established an archive project, in an attempt to better inform the ineptitude of their legal representation and the government. The International Crimes Strategy Forum is a coalition of some usual suspects, but others less usual.
Their stated objective is :
... to promote the cause of justice and at the same time to facilitate fair trials of all the perpetrators of 1971 war irrespective of their present abode, political connections or status in the society. We welcome any moral, intellectual, financial or personal support from you. Together we can strengthen this movement by instilling aspirations for justice, independence and freedom in the hearts of our generations.
Allahumma guide us to Truth.
Ever on the look out for white laurels, the Kangaroo Court's PR wing was played theatre with the European Parliament's South Asia subcommittee the other day. Ansar Ahmed Ullah, of the rather fruity Shadhinota Trust (London), Nirmul Committee organiser and the Daily Star's London correspondent wrote it up here .
A glowing vote of confidence, they wet themselves in awe. Clearly.
Toby Cadman, part of the legal team defending the Jamaat accused, saw things quite differently here.
The Daily Star's website seems to have lost my comment on the article, I am not surprised. 'The people's right to know'. My foot.
BDNews24 seems just as intolerance of difference of opinions on key political dogmas. Of the electronic media I can get a hold off, the only one that dissents on occasion is The Weekly Holiday. There is some kind of fortnight length time delay on David Bergman's Bangladesh War Crimes Blog, which provide rich court transcripts. This could be logistical, legal or otherwise.
The inequitable apparatus of enunciation, reception, justice and mass communication is problematic. Consider the struggle of truth out of a black hole, that's the struggle of a fair trial in a setting that's already decided upon the guilt of the accused.
Meanwhile Salahudin Quader Choudhury, the BNP MP and Parliamentary Adviser to Khaleda Zia is having a turbulent time, apparently being forced to sign things and agree to legal representations that he does not desire. I have less inherent sympathy here, but I shouldn't, I am eager to know more about how his father was tortured to death by his opponents. The regime in power is enjoying beating the crap out him and abusing his person. I suspect the BNP is unable to operate without him.
In our political death engine, this state of affairs is a stroke of genius. Jamaat isn't in the best of shape, especially without its elders who at least have experience on their side, they aren't structured to supersede themselves. Countless activists of theirs have been taken in, locked up or disappeared since the Awami League got into power. Without Sayeedi's powerful ability to command an audience and fire it up they seem quite scuppered. Meanwhile the BNP just limps around with little strategy or big idea of how it might, oh dear, offer an alternative line of flight.