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     Volume 4 Issue 4 | July 16, 2004 |

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Finding old in the new
The above title in SWM of July 2, 2004 under "Impressions" brought back memories of New Orleans as well as the beautiful, but dilapidating architecture of Dhaka. We drove to the city from the West Coast to attend a conference in 1973. We found New Orleans the same way Ms Nawaz did although, I must confess that, at the time, we did not think of comparing the physical aspects of the two cities as the author has. Nevertheless it dawned on us that the summer there was similar to that of Bangladesh. The author is right when she says that we are keen to destroy our heritage in the city of Dhaka. There are individuals like Ms Nawaz having great love for what they had inherited from their forefathers, while intently wishing the survival of the old city with its glory of the past. The quaint city that once existed is no longer there since it became the capital of the then East Bengal in 1947 with its consistent unplanned growth. Thanks for bringing back the memory of New Orleans and old Dhaka through this thought-provoking article.
Syed Waliullah

For Poetry
I think you guys do an amazing job! I also want to say that I absolutely agree with Mominul Hasan Rintu and Khokan Sarker about having a poetry section of some sort. So many of your readers, including me, would love to read and contribute poems. For me, writing poetry has become a way to express the love for my country and make the necessary criticisms. I do contribute somewhere else, but this is the publication I would really love to contribute to. Thank you for listening to a reader.
Shailla Bari

Good Jokes
SWM is always subjected to criticism because of their jokes page. The main complaint is that the jokes are not funny at all and that the jokes editor should make a little more effort. In my opinion, the jokes in the last two issues (July 2nd and July 9th) were very funny and definitely warrant a chuckle here and there. I especially enjoyed the jokes in the July 2nd issue called "Why did the chicken cross the road." I implore the jokes editor to keep up the good work.
Syeed Habib

B for Bangladeshi…
I applaud Ms. Srabonti Narmeen Ali for a poignant and passionate piece under the above title in which she reflects the thoughts of her generation. I will urge those from my generation and the handful of Freedom Fighters still around to read her piece. She points the finger rightfully at us when she writes, "…our parents fought for our country and gave us the gift of independence…However, where did they go from there?" So true. We fought the enemy, our comrades gave their lives and once we became free we let politicians take over and run the country as they wished. We, who fought thought we were such heroes and it was enough that we picked up arms to fight the Pakistan Army. So we relinquished our duties of making sure the DREAM of the People to make Bangladesh a Paradise on earth was realised. Yes, my young friend, you are so right in saying that this is not the Bangladesh anyone wants. As Freedom Fighters we failed our future generation in not trying to continue our struggle to reach that goal. In the process we have lost our pride and we have not imbued our future generation to be proud of anything as we ourselves failed to follow the spirit of the Liberation War and practice it in our everyday lives. We have been hypocritical by saying one thing and practising another. I have faith in my young friends and believe people like Srabonti should continue their writing so fossils like us will wake up and see what is happening around us.
Akku Chowdhury

The Land of the Not So Free
Mustafa Zaman's article titled "The Land of the Not So Free" gives a chilling account of the double standards perpetuated by American foreign and domestic policy. He brings to attention all those unpleasant truths that politicians go through amazing lengths to hide. Zaman mentions Senator Daschle who had the gumption to criticise the Bush Administration for their fascist post September 11th legislation and policies. The write up mentions Gore Vidal's writing titled "The End of Liberty" which took months to get published. Vidal points out Osama Bin Laden's former involvement with the CIA as well as the FBI's murderous attacks on Waco evangelists that left 82 dead including 25 children. These and many more home truths have been revealed before but they get buried with time and propaganda. So it is important to highlight these gross violations committed by these “fighters of terrorism” again and again. I commend Zaman for his incisive writing and in touching a subject that is so controversial, yet so crucial.
Roxana S. Islam

Think About It…
After reading both of Kajalie Shehreen Islam's articles, "Til the Pages Go Blank" and "Baba/Ma, the World is a Horrible Place," I have to say that I have very little hope in my country. Both of her articles had to do with the social decline we are facing in Bangladesh. The first article was on the security of writers and journalists and the second one focused on the many kinds of harassment that women face. We ought to be ashamed of our country and the current state that it is in. I would like to thank Ms. Islam for writing two very well thought out and extremely coherent articles. Although I felt slightly depressed after reading them, I also feel that there is hope yet, if there are people like her out there, speaking out against injustice and wrongdoings in whatever way they can.
On Email

Letters to the Editor, Dhaka Diary & Write to Mita with the writer’s name and address, should be within 200 words. Articles should be within 1,200 words. Articles and photos submitted will not be returned. Plagiarised articles will not be accepted. All materials should be sent to: Star Weekend Magazine, 19, Karwan Bazar, Dhaka-1215, Fax: 8125155, or e-mailed to <dsmagazn@gononet.com> Articles may be edited for reasons of space and clarity.
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