The Economist Saga and Bangladesh’s Reactive Approach


The party in government may once again say that the Economist has been running ‘smear campaign about Bangladesh’ with a new article. I am now waiting for a huge press statement or rejoinder to be issued from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. In the past three years, it has been done a few times and as the government has less than two years time in the office, they would definitively try to convince the outer world with some unconvincing words.

The government policymakers here merely realise the challenges that the country and its people face for their (in)action. Or even if they come to realise lately, they do things in a way that they would have never done if they knew their reactive method would yield laughter.

I find some pro-government people writing against the Economist paper which would not return anything at all and the paper’s credibility will remain as it is. May be some people will read those and then find whatever the Economist has written, the government did little or no spin to alter their views before the article was printed. It’s not possible to spin here because the government’s internal policy is always under close watch by the people inside the country and abroad. One cannot hide anything at all in the age of info tech. So, the action has to be transparent and at the same time the government will have to be engaged with these friends abroad so that they don’t come up with pieces which undermine the sovereignty of the country in people’s mind abroad. If an international publication calls upon another country to intervene into internal affairs of a country, this obviously undermines the sovereignty of the country targeted.

All the international media, development organisations and rights groups are potential friends who might turn into a foe for a country anytime. Their flourishing number cries for rules of engagement with systematic management of information operation. Unfortunately, thought process of a politician does merely go beyond five-year tenure and so to say they only think of overcoming the next general election; but a statesman thinks beyond one single election.

Few lines from a previous reaction:

“A closer look at the article indicates that the writer is carrying out the agenda of a quarter who are out to wage a smear campaign about Bangladesh and its present government led by the Honourable Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina who has, through her extraordinary courage, personal sacrifice and inspiring visionary leadership, brought the country back on track of democratic governance, made the country a model for women’s empowerment, food security, disaster management, poverty alleviation, and pursuing a people-centric peace building policy nationally as well as regionally and internationally. People in the region have already started enjoying the benefits of her government’s strong stand against terrorism and extremism.”

Image: The Economist Thinking Spaces


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