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Volume 2 Issue 7 | August 2007



Original Forum Editorial

Month in Review: Bangladesh
Month in Review: International
Exit strategies: Some lessons from history- - Rehman Sobhan
What should have been in the budget-- K. Siddique-e-Rabbani
Tough politics but loose economics-- Nizam Ahmad
The effects of corruption -- Saifuddin Ahmed
Time to declare war on hunger-- Zahin Hasan
Where Deshantori ends, Phiriye Ano Bangladesh begins -- Mridul Chowdhury
A cloud of silence in Bangla Town-- Naeem Mohaiemen
Photo Feature
Epaar Opaar-- Udayan Chattopadhyay
The third pillar -- S. Amer Ahmed
Let's get political--Asif Saleh
Through Big Brother's eyes-- Tazreena Sajjad
Alternate universes: fairy tale, sci-fi or reality?-- Rashida Ahmad
Column: It's no joke


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Editor's Note

This month, in addition to pieces dissecting the current political situation, we have also chosen to focus on the theme of migration and to shine a spotlight on the millions of Bangladeshis toiling abroad, legally and illegally, and to whom the nation's economy owes so much due to their repatriated remittances.

First up is a piece by film-maker Mridul Chowdhury in which he discusses the making of his critically acclaimed documentary Deshantori, about young Bangladeshi migrants, specifically highlighting the wrenching story of a group of Bangladeshi migrants whose quest for a better life led them to end up marooned in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea.

In addition, we have a poignant and thought-provoking piece of reportage by Naeem Mohaiemen on the Bangladeshis living in the shadows in Bombay, and a provocative look at the divide between Bangladesh and West Bengal and the attitudes of those on each side of the border by Udayan Chattopadhyay.

Asif Saleh weighs in with a piece on the politics of the NRB community, and Tazreena Sajjad offers words of warning about how Bangladesh is viewed through the eyes of the US.

The issue is not just about migration, however.

The lead article, written by Rehman Sobhan, is something that everyone who is interested in the direction of the country will want to read. Sobhan looks at the history of military misadventures in Bangladesh (and Pakistan) to see what lessons the military of today can learn from the past as it readies its exit strategy. The article is absolutely first-rate historical and contemporary analysis that we guarantee will set the agenda for political debate until the next elections. Remember: you read it in Forum, first!

In addition, we have pointed critiques of the recent budget by K. Siddique-e-Rabbani and Nizam Ahmed. Their pieces offer two very different perspectives on where the country should be going, and will provide much food for thought. Finally, we have an essay on corruption and one on how to tackle rising food prices.

There is more, of course, as always. We believe that this issue of Forum will be indispensable reading for those who wish to understand the current political climate and that Rehman Sobhan's lead article will be most talked about piece of political writing this year.

Don't miss it, and don't forget to tell all your friends and family that Forum is the only publication in town for must-read analysis of the choices before us.


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