Counter-Terrorism: How To Deal With Unpleasant Guests


March 18, 2010: Bangladesh has been successful in crippling Islamic terrorists operating in its territory. This has resulted in lots of arrests, and the capture of many useful documents (especially electronic ones on computers and cell phones.) All this revealed that many of the Islamic radical groups have shifted their bases to Nepal and Persian Gulf countries (like Dubai, which has long provided sanctuary for South Asian gangsters, and anyone else who will spend lots of money and behave while in residence.)

The Islamic terrorist groups in Bangladesh were both locals (intent on attacking local targets) and foreigners (largely groups chased out of Pakistan and India, all intent on carrying out attacks inside India). While the terrorists who fled to the Persian Gulf are somewhat out of the way (and subject to intense airport security if they try to fly out), Nepal borders India. Worse yet, Nepal recently deposed its pro-Indian monarchy and established a rather more anti-Indian republic. Getting local cooperation against Islamic terrorists is proving difficult.

Bangladesh also had a hard time cracking down on its Islamic militants. But the government made an effort. Two years ago, the government established a special tribunal to try terrorism suspects. There were also new laws making it easier to cut off terrorist financing. The government believed that there were over 10,000 Islamic radicals in the southwestern parts of the country, and several Islamic radical organizations were trying to get some terrorist action going. The police had jailed many of those who were getting too close to turning talk into action. But this was seen as insufficient, and that led to a sustained campaign against Islamic radicals. There have been far fewer acts of Islamic terrorism in the last two years, and all those signs that the terrorists were departing for more hospitable areas.



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