3 days after 1/11, on January 14 2007, when a significant portion of the country was in an euphoria that some Godly intervention finally helped the nation get rid of BNP-Jamaat stranglehold, I wrote this post called “What really Happened?”. The post was really an analysis and translation of what Daily Prothom-Alo editor Mr. Motiur Rahman wrote and was a very clear testament of the truth that 1/11 was nothing but a military coup d’état.

Nearly 20 months later, we are noticing a slow motion reversal of the coup d’état of 1/11. Although unlike the coup d’état of 1/11, the reversal is not as surreptitious; the reason of this sudden U turn of the ruling authorities remains a matter of great speculations. Also missing this time is the running commentary by Mr. Motiur Rahman. As I do not have any editorial or editor’s commentary to analyze to find our answer, lets speculate the potential factors behind the perceived failure ( at least in the short term) of 1/11 military-civil society take over.

 

  1. Failure to control prices of essentials, provide more electricity-water, and curbing petty crimes.
  2. Continued grassroots corruption while ACC/Government kept them visibly occupied with selective high profile politicians.
  3. Failure in appreciating the grassroots appeal of political leadership and launching crusade against politicians without much ground work and as a result alienating the grassroots political activists across the party line.
  4. Failure to hijack BNP, thanks to a glorious resistance by BNP grassroots.
  5. Totally failing to read the psych of Khaleda Zia and failure in pressurizing her into submission.
  6. Lack of spontaneous acceptance of the military backed entity by Awami League grassroots and Awami league intellectuals.
  7. The kick— August 2007 incidence of Dhaka University.
  8. General Moeen’s bold but very short sighted activities regarding India. His very visible high profile prolonged trip to India, widely publicized meetings with Indian politicians and military generals, receiving horses from Indian army chief and hosting Indian military chief and other generals for rather long visits to Bangladesh; caused more than a few eyebrows to raise. Despite rapid globalization and very close social ties-interactions with India, political relationship with India remains a very sensitive national issues and a matter of intense scrutiny by the population. It has been assumed that due to immature handling of India affairs, General Moeen very quickly lost his support base both in the military ranks and the group of general population who supported 1/11 coup.
  9. A rather dumb and short sighted move by Sheikh Hasina to refrain from criticizing the government ( I still don’t understand what bad would have happened if Mrs. Hasina resorted to some lip service rhetoric against the government) after her release strongly fueled assumptions in the public that there have been a deal between AL-Military backed government. The situation turned such that BNP was not participating in the election and in a one-sided election organized by army, AL is handed the state power. This would have seriously hampered the credibility of Bangladesh armed forces as a non partisan neutral arbitrator in Bangladesh.
  10. Total failure in presenting the smoking gun of Tarique Rahman in front of the nations. Something like Tarique version of the audio CDs of the confessions of tortured Sheikh Selim and Abdul Jalil implicating Hasina would have worked.
  11. And finally the fractured backbones of Tarique Rahman forced the government into taking some unplanned steps.

Or who knows, all what we are seeing now is nothing but a strategic retreat by the militray leadership of 1/11 aimed at returning more covertly, effectively and cunningly, in Thailand style.