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06th-May-2016

US way of fighting terrorism is wrong and not winning

By Editorial Desk

US Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs Nisha Desai Biswal now on a visit to Dhaka has offered to work together on countering terrorism and violent extremism before they take root here. Her quick visit in the wake of the brutal killing of Xulhaz Mannan who was a USAID official and former US Embassy staff  showed the US government anxiety for the series of killing and the government's inability to contain.
Knowing how American bomb droppings killed more innocent men, women and children making the terrorists to be more powerful and more widespread. We are not sure how constructive Ms Biswal's advice to our government will be. It is not certainly hopeful for us to know that the US will be fighting terrorism together with our government when our terrorism is more expressions of our internal politics. We do not want to be part of international terrorism.
Only a handful of  persons staying in the USA and using American aircrafts carried out the  devastating  attacks notoriously known as 9/11 attacks in New York claimed lives of nearly three thousand people. Since in the war on terrorism many more thousand lost their lives, still there is no sign of ending.
It remains a mystery how Osama bin Laden could organise such air attacks in New York, who was killed hiding in Pakistan as pathetically a lone figure. But President Bush declared war to fight Islamist terrorism. Occupied Iraq and Afghanistan within hours by a show of US massive military power.
The US government should have learned that it is the political extremism that has promoted religious extremism. The politically motivated war against extremism resorted to by the US military in Iraq, Afghanistan  and elsewhere made the innocent Muslim victims angry and offered ample opportunity to Islamist terrorists to motivate more recruits.
The vengeful campaign of barbaric brutalities against the Muslims on mere suspicion has been the reality of  American foreign policy since the air attacks on twin-towers in New York in 2001.
The Bush Government considered revenge must be taken on the Muslims with no hold bar cruelty. In Guantanamo, Abu Ghraib  and other places torture camps were set up to keep the people detained for indefinite period. Muslims were arrested to be sent to other countries to subject them to inhuman suffering. This was rendition. They just disappeared and were not allowed to contact their family members.
The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan killed thousands of people, countless families disintegrated and many became shelterless. Innocent Muslims are still dying in large numbers nearly everyday in Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq.
Use of the mighty military power of the USA and heartless brutality exacted indiscriminately to punish the Muslims for the attacks in New York have not stopped terrorism. Rather they have become more extensive and more brutal.
This much we can say that it has been proved that the US way of confronting terrorists militarily alone has only made terrorism worldwide crisis.
The real American way of fighting terrorism should have been strengthening  democracy  side by side carrying out targeted military operations. The democratic countries could have been the bulwark against terrorism. But America wanted to win terrorism with superior military power and failed. Terrorism is spreading in Western countries also.
President Obama and many others in the West emphasised on the importance of empowering people through democracy to fight terrorism but the fact of dependence on fire power dominated the  US strategy to fight terrorism. Killing against killing has to be well targeted avoiding scrupulously the innocent ones. But innocent ones are being killed by both side in this war against terrorism.
In Bangladesh also what we find is that the government's use of heavy police power while eliminating democracy has resulted in more acts of terrorism. The people are isolated from the government and the government also does not believe in the power of democracy to defeat terrorism. What has followed is more police power and more sensational killings in Bangladesh.
 In our view serious terrorist outfits are not to be found in  Bangladesh. Due to lack of good governance there are young ones who are desperately angry and expressing their anger through violence.
 Answer to our kind of terrorism is not police power but to stop the power struggle of intolerant politics. There is the need for the politics of accommodation as is possible by making democracy functional. But the government is advised by its advisers that one- party strong government is the best way. The country is being divided between pro-liberation and anti-liberation forces.
Thus the talk is force and not peace and political stability.