Myths and Facts -  Bangladesh Liberation War

Myths and Facts - Bangladesh Liberation War

Product ID: 29416

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Author: B Z Khasru
Publisher: Rupa
Year: 2010
Language: English
Pages: 479
ISBN/UPC (if available): 9788129116970


On 14 January 1971, Pakistan’s President General Yahya Khan called Sheikh Mujibur Rahman the country’s “future prime minister.” Only two months later, he branded the Bengali leader “a traitor” and threw him into a dark cell a thousand miles away from home. Why did the Mujib-Yahya talks collapse? Did Mujib want to break Pakistan?

Then U.S. President Richard Nixon rushed his country’s Seventh Fleet into the Bay of Bengal and Warned Moscow to stop India from destroying west Pakistan. What provoked Nixon’s actions? Did Moscow force New Delhi to abruptly end the War? Did India plan before March 1971 to break Pakistan?

The foreign minister of the Bangladesh government-in-exile unsuccessfully engaged in secret talks with American diplomats in India in an attempt to strike a deal with Yehya to end Pakistan’s civil war that gave birth to Bangladesh. Why did America’s secret diplomacy fail?

In Myths and Facts: Bangladesh Liberation War – How India, U.S., China, and the U.S.S.R. Shaped the Outcome, B.Z. Khasru uncovers the mysteries the 1971 South Asian war. Using extensive research and thorough analyses, the author describes what caused the war, how it was conducted, and how the world powers shaped its outcome.

Based on formerly secret U.S. government documents that have been declassified and obtained under the Freedom of Information Act — as well as stories narrated by those who made history before, during and after the conflict — this book cracks open the floodgates of information, separating facts from myths and giving details of events as they unfolded during those fateful days of 1971.


“Stop helping Yhya. Stop helping kill my innocent people. You have practically forced my people into the lap of the extremists. What is our crime? You must put pressure on Yahya to Stop. You have minimized my population, one million of them are dead. Another nine million have been forced to flee to India and Burma, where they are not wanted. Your have done this with your arms, your money, your food, your transport, your medicines – all of which have been used by Yahya’s troops against us. I don’t like to speak this way to a representative of my old friend, but you asked me what we expect from the great democratic United States. I hope you don’t min if I speak frankly. I have studied your policy. You are not weak. You can tell Yahya ‘don’t use our arms.’ Only you can do that.”
--- Khandakar Moshtaque Ahmed, foreign minister, Bangladesh government-in-exile, to U.S. diplomat George Griffin in India in 1971.

“I told Yahya that in making mention of this I wanted him fully to understand that the U.S. government had taken no initiative whatsoever in gathering this information nor was the U.S. government seeking to play a mediatory role between the government of Pakistan and the outlawed Awami League. Conversely, I stated that the U.S. government had consistently maintained a diplomatic stance of noninvolvement and had in no way sought out or solicited contacts with the ‘Bangladesh Government’ representatives… However, I noted Yahya’s many conversations with me during which he emphasized his hope for a return to normalcy and his additional hope that with such a climate he could turn power back to the people. Since the U.S. government was now privy to this information, I thought that in the interests of the much-sought-for peace, I should bring it to his attention.”
---- Joseph Farland, U.S. ambassador to Pakistan in 1971.

“I do not want to break Pakistan. But we Bengalis must have autonomy so that we are not treated like a colony of the western wing.”
--- Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, 1971.

“Threaten to move forces or move them, Henry, that’s what they must do now. Now, government, we’re playing our role and that will restrain India….”.
--- President Richard Nixon to National Security Adviser Henry Kissinger, 1971.


A Note to the Reader

1. How America Viewed East Pakistan in 1971 – Genesis of U.S. Policy
2. Pakistan in Trouble – Mujib’s secret Message to America
3. Why the Yahya-Mujib Talks Failed – Did Mujib want to break Pakistan?
4. Kissinger’s Diplomacy – Tryst with Failure
5. Blood Telegram – Diplomatic Revolt in East Pakistan
6. Why Nixon Opposed India – The Indo-U.S.-Sino-Soviet Equation
7. Yahya’s Misadventure – Dark Clouds over Pakistan
8. Did India Plan to break Pakistan?
9. Did Yahya want to hang Mujib?
10. Moshtaque –U.S. Secret Talks – What Really Happened?
11. U.S. Fiasco in East Pakistan – Right Diagnosis, Wrong Medicine
12. U.S. Warns India – Don’t start war
13. Pakistan Crisis – Superpower Game
14. America wakes Up, smells war
15. India bests war Drum
16. Gandhi Goes to Washington
17. East Pakistan Burns, Yahya Snoozes
18. Agha Khan Formula – Unique Solution Missed?
19. India Begins Blitzkrieg
20. Operation Liberate Dhaka
21. “Balkanize” west Pakistan – Why Gandhi backed off
22. Why Niazi Surrendered
23. Bangladesh Wins freedom – America Faces New Reality

Declassified Documents