• Thursday, October 18, 2018

What happened to the Jews of Bangladesh?

Discussion in 'Bangladesh Defence Forum' started by Black_cats, May 18, 2018.

  1. Black_cats

    Black_cats FULL MEMBER

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    What happened to the Jews of Bangladesh?
    HUMAN RIGHTS

    https://foreignpolicyblogs.com/2018/04/30/what-happened-to-the-jews-of-bangladesh/

    by Rachel Avraham | on April 30th, 2018 | 0 Comments
    [​IMG]

    The Jewish community of Bangladesh is virtually non-existent thanks to the persecution of minorities in the country.

    In the wake of the increased persecution experienced by Buddhists, Christians and Hindus in Bangladesh, one must ponder, what happened to another persecuted minority group that used to reside in the Bengal region of the Indian subcontinent? According to Asian Jewish Life, in 1947, there were 4,000 Jews who lived in West Bengal primarily in Calcutta and about 135 Jews who were residing in East Bengal, which became Bangladesh.

    According to local reports, most of Bangladesh’s Jews resided in Dhaka, the Bangladeshi capital city. These Jews were involved in various occupations including being in business and being traders. Other Jews ran hotels and restaurants in the country including the Baneda Restaurant. Jews have also played a prominent role in Bangladeshi history. In 1971, it was Retired Lieutenant General JPR Jacob, an Indian Jew that today resides in New Delhi, who liberated East Pakistan during this war. In addition, Bangladesh’s National Assembly Building was designed by Jewish American architect Louis Khan and it is ranked as the world’s largest legislative complex.

    But despite this history, today, the Jewish population of Bangladesh is virtually non-existent. According to local sources, there are only 4 Jews living in Dhaka and they keep their identity private. Furthermore, there is no active synagogue within the country. However, Bangladeshi dissident Salah Uddin Shoib Chowdhury differs, claiming that there are 3,500 Jews of Bangladeshi origin but that due to religious persecution, most of Bangladesh’s Jews who remain in the country claim that they are Jehovah’s Witnesses.

    Regardless, according to various reports, most of Bangladesh’s Jews have immigrated to either America or Israel. “Jews in this country are in the most vulnerable situation,” Choudhury, editor of The Weekly Blitz, told the Baltimore Post Examiner. “The government, the political parties, the religious institutions and even most Bangladeshis want to see the elimination of Jewish existence in this country.”

    However, there are remnants of what used to be a Jewish community in Bangladesh. According to Shipan Kumer Basu, the President of the World Hindu Struggle Committee, there is a mysterious building in Purana Paltan that used to be a Jewish club/synagogue: “Abdul Fida Chowdhury, an elderly resident of Purana Paltan, said that 50 years ago, there were a number of Jews in the community who gathered in that building which is titled ‘Freemasons Hall 1910’ but after the War of Independence in 1971, they were no longer seen. Presently, the building was confiscated by the land owners and it now belongs to the Bangladeshi government.”

    According to reporter Larry Luxner, there is nothing that identifies that building as a synagogue today. He is a bit skeptical of the claims put forward by Chowdhury who nevertheless insists, “The government would like to hide any trace that it was a synagogue, but I can assure you this building was used as a synagogue from 1910 to 1948.” However, according to the Jewish Chronicle, there are some Jewish expatriates in Bangladesh who do meet for both Yom Kippur and Rosh Hashanah every year to date. Yet according to one of their sources, “The only Jews you will find in Bangladesh are those merchants with extensive business reasons to stay in Bangladesh.”

    This is because of the negative treatment the Jewish minority in Bangladesh has encountered. The Bangladeshi government considers Jews to be enemies. They have so much animosity for Jews that they refused to have diplomatic relations with Israel even though Israel was among the first countries to recognize Bangladeshi independence. Similarly, the Hindus of Bangladesh are treated with suspicion and often have their loyalty questioned as well. Based on the lie that the Hindus are not loyal citizens, their women are being raped, their homes are being confiscated, their holy places are being desecrated and they are slowly being ethnically cleansed from the country. Indeed, the plight of minorities in Bangladesh including the Jewish and Hindu ones is horrific. After the Jews have all pretty much left Bangladesh, Hindus, Buddhists and Christians are also leaving Bangladesh in droves in recent times. If this trend will continue, Bangladesh will soon be an exclusively Muslim country.
     
  2. HamWatan

    HamWatan FULL MEMBER

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    Traditional Jew logic: create problems for your host country with your anti-assimilation views and beliefs, get kicked out, act like you Dindu Nuffin.
     
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  3. Kandari-Hushiyaar

    Kandari-Hushiyaar FULL MEMBER

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    So you needed Jews from all over the world to create illegal Israel and at the same time expect their presence in their origin? What they were supposed to do? Cloning?
     
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  4. fitpOsitive

    fitpOsitive SENIOR MEMBER

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    As you sow, so shall you reap.
    Btw, those Jews are killing Palestinians these days.
     
  5. Daghalodi

    Daghalodi FULL MEMBER

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    So are the white Zionists going to accept these black jews into israel?

    They arent letting ethopian jews to enter Israel
     
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  6. Bilal9

    Bilal9 ELITE MEMBER

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    I don't know what this woman is writing about. No one is persecuting Jewish people in Bangladesh, situation is exactly as it is in India for Jewish folks (like in Calcutta). If you're doing business quietly (idhar-ka maal udhar daalo) no one bothers you.

    She's quoting some folks who are known pathetic liars and will say anything for a quid-pro-quo favor.

    Maybe the ultra religious folks have a difference of opinion with Israel - but Bangladeshi folks are largely peace loving and are not going to go launch attacks on someone's business just because that person is Jewish.

    It has more to do with that Jewish person's comfort level of staying and doing business in Bangladesh. Some people leave because they don't feel comfortable. And that applies to a whole lot of minority folks - just like in surrounding countries.
     
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  7. mb444

    mb444 SENIOR MEMBER

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    There are several Jewish families that continue to live in chowk bazar area that I am aware off. They were Albanian Jews but now indistinguishable from an average Bangladeshi. They trade in rice, very rich and their kids are settled in Australia but maintains close contact. I am also aware of a Bangladeshi of Jewish extraction in the BD diplomatic service in the 80s with my father. He was married to a Parsi lady, I am not sure if he was practicing however or his exact background. From what I dad said his family chose to remain in Pakistan and subsequently BD. I am sure they have a synagogue somewhere but a formal structure may not have been possible due to small number.

    The population of Jews probably was never much and as to persecution..... no not really. No one cares.
     
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  8. PersonasNonGrata

    PersonasNonGrata FULL MEMBER

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    So many Bangladeshi Hindu/Jew persecution articles written by this 'Rachel Avraham', wonder who she is and what her reason for being so focused on BD is.
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2018
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  9. xyxmt

    xyxmt ELITE MEMBER

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    She becomes the PM
     
  10. The Last Jedi

    The Last Jedi FULL MEMBER

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    To pressurize Bangladesh to have formal relation with the state of Israel. If its good for BD or not should be a consideration among upper echelon. But nobody can convince gullible bunch. I think some policies were set forward in BD ideology to distinguish itself from India, such as Israel hating. But going forward there will be need to change some of its ideologies if they are against development, like the change of constitution going all the way back to 1972.
     
  11. PersonasNonGrata

    PersonasNonGrata FULL MEMBER

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    Yes I think there's something in that, she implies that no relation with Israel means BD hates all Jews, which is obviously not true.
     
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