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Sirajul Islam

Member (since June 2009)
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About Sirajul Help
Location: Dhaka, Bangladesh
Occupation: Chief Executive Officer, Ashrai
Interests: reading, writing, travelling
Expertise: Non-profit organisation management, writing, editing, social sciences research
Background Help
Journalism: More than 20 years
Education: Post-graduate school
News: 90 minutes a day or more
Internet: 90 minutes a day or more
Languages: Other
Politics: Neutral viewpoint
Age: 50-64
Gender: Male
Income: Less than $25K
Favorites Help
Topics: INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS, International affair
Contact Info Help
Email:
Address: House # 51, 4th Floor, Block - Ka, Pisciculture Housing Society, Shyamoli, Dhaka, BD
Phone: +880-2-8853576
Last Visit: Oct 17, 2014 - 5:47 AM PDT
Last Edit: Feb 15, 2012 - 8:28 AM PST

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Sirajul commented on this story – Oct. 17, 2014

The American government did not find what it had been looking for at the war’s outset, and then, it failed to prepare its troops and medical corps for the aged weapons it did find.

Sirajul posted and reviewed this story - Oct 17, 2014
Sirajul's Rating
4.7

The New York Times journalist C.J. Chivers altogether with John Ismay, Duraid Ahmed, Omar al-Jawoshy, Mac William Bishop and Eric Schmitt have investigated and authored this excellent but lengthy article in which it turns out there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq at the time of American invasion in 2003. C.J. Chivers, and his team have done a massive, and impressive, investigation and finds that they were not only there in significant quantities, but the fact is that U.S. soldiers were exposed to them, and the medical response was terrible, and it was all covered up. Excellent journalism.

Why all these weapons hidden so far? Maybe in part because they were weapons from the 1980s, when the U.S. was an ally of Saddam, and the U.S. as well as the Western Europe were involved in creating them. It couldn't be a tawdrier tale. And worse yet, significant numbers of the ancient shells filled with leaking mustard and sarin gas were at an Iraqi base that the militants of the Islamic State have taken.

The United States had gone to war declaring it must destroy an active weapons of mass destruction program. Instead, American troops gradually found and ultimately suffered ... More »

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NT Rating: 4.6 | See All NT Reviews »
Sirajul posted and reviewed this story - Oct 17, 2014
Sirajul reviewed this story - Oct 17, 2014
Sirajul's Rating
4.1
See Full Review » (15 answers)
NT Rating: 3.9 | See All NT Reviews »
Sirajul reviewed this story - Oct 17, 2014
Sirajul's Rating
3.9
See Full Review » (16 answers)
NT Rating: 3.8 | See All NT Reviews »
Sirajul posted and reviewed this story - Oct 17, 2014
Sirajul's Rating
4.4

Good news story by Hannah Allam and Roy Gutman of the Tribune News Service (McClatchy). It's good news because it exposes how the United States diplomats are working for shifting alliances that has been created by the rise of the Islamic State, and the non cooperation of its 'allies' in the region. It also led bare the actual amount of influence the United States has on the region, which is, otherwise, a grave foreign policy challenge for the U.S.

Although, there maybe reason to celebrate the toppling of an autocrat, the outcome of the Iraq and Syria wars and the rise of ISIL have demonstrated in horrific terms that the alternatives can be even worse. So, the U.S., under the leadership of its president now chooses (or forced?) to work with its 'natural' allies to ‘degrade and destroy' the ISIL in the Middle East because its made-up 'coalition' does neither really fits into the actual scenario nor are willing to ‘degrade ... More »

In Iraq, for example, the U.S. is providing air cover for Iranian-backed Shiite Muslim militias that once targeted American forces. And now in Syria, it appears the United ... More »

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NT Rating: 4.4 | See All NT Reviews »
Sirajul posted and reviewed this story - Oct 17, 2014
Sirajul posted and reviewed this story - Oct 12, 2014
Sirajul's Rating
4.5

This National Geographic Explorers Project is a good journalistic piece because it chronicled the work of NatGeo's Emerging Explorers, tomorrow's visionaries who are making discoveries, making a difference, and inspiring people to care about the planet. The video reporting shows how Robert Wood is working on entirely new classes of robots that may one day transform space exploration, agriculture, and search-and-rescue operations.

What differentiates his work is that his goal is not to create a single, perfect machine. He credits nature for inspiring his approach, which includes creating a fleet of tiny, robotic bees. Roberts says the bees are small and can't fly longer distances. So, what was to do, he quipped. "The answer in nature is you work together,” he said. Using that concept, he uses simple, often inexpensive materials to build “not-so-perfect” robots. “The idea is that the whole is greater ... More »

“[Bees] are small, they’re not very capable, they can’t fly for very long,” Wood says. “So what do you do? The answer in nature is you work together. The idea is ... More »

See Full Review » (18 answers)
NT Rating: 4.5 | See All NT Reviews »
Sirajul posted and reviewed this story - Oct 12, 2014
Sirajul posted this story - Oct 12, 2014
Sirajul commented on this story – Oct. 6, 2014

Humanity is locked in a millennia-old battle to the death with diseases like these. The world has fought them back with herculean effort. Scientists developed penicillin and other antibiotics to treat bacteria like the ones thought responsible for the plague, which killed somewhere ... More »

Sirajul reviewed this story - Oct 6, 2014
Sirajul's Rating
4.6

The facts discussed in this story help me better understand the subject. It provides us information that isn't readily available to us. I think, the information and interpretation provided may not be hard to understand. It’s now time for action – not only finding out a viable drug remedy but to address the problems associated with the causes of the spread of the disease. I mean, the preventive approach is better than only depending on a curative answer, and here is why we need an investment for a massive social awareness raising campaign alongside the scientists’, doctors’ and nurses’ services.

The current outbreak of Ebola has shown that the global systems that are supposed to spot outbreaks of diseases are not good enough, and more importantly, the action that follows is not fast enough, not coordinated enough, to cut off an epidemic at source. But we know it’s possible. One of the triumphs of the last few decades was the containment of SARS. But the world failed to achieve that in the case of Ebola.

This outbreak appears to have been caused by a new strain of the Ebola virus. The initial response was slow, in part because medical professionals were not expecting to see ... More »

See Full Review » (23 answers)
NT Rating: 4.5 | See All NT Reviews »
Sirajul posted and reviewed this story - Oct 5, 2014
Sirajul's Rating
4.6

This is good journalism because it helps readers understand who the real beneficiaries of wars are, and from the responses of the players in the defense industry, it is evident that the war is going to be longer. The story was gathered efficiently by interviewing all major stakeholders of the issue who were also named and their quotes presented. This can also be termed as good journalism because the story provides factual information to support what it says, and doesn’t sound like the storywriter’s personal views, since we know, presenting reliable facts is the most important and the most basic aspect of good journalism.

As U.S. combat operations ended in Iraq and Afghanistan, the defense industry braced for protracted budget cuts at the Pentagon. Major contractors have laid off workers, ... More »

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NT Rating: 4.5 | See All NT Reviews »
Sirajul posted and reviewed this story - Oct 5, 2014
Sirajul's Rating
4.6

In this story, Professor Juan Cole makes a simple point which makes this story as an important piece in American journalism. The point, which couldn't be more relevant when it comes to America’s latest war effort, which is, the U.S. Congress gets liberal and don’t even blink when one new war knocks at their doors but the same U.S. Congress becomes poignant cost-cutters only when it's the welfare of their constituents.

The University of Michigan professor notes that while the food stamps cut was passed by the Congress, it had been waged with the pretext that the Federal government has no money, and in fact, it was being in debt for long, and such, how could it stand the 'wastage' of the federal fund? But, the same Congress has no problem with the war on ISIL in Iraq and Syria, which could cost from $18 to $22 billion a year.

It was all the way back in February, so the memory of this headline has faded: ” Congress passes $8.7 billion food stamp cut By Ned Resnikoff It’s official: 850,000 ... More »

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NT Rating: 4.5 | See All NT Reviews »
Sirajul posted and reviewed this story - Oct 5, 2014
Sirajul reviewed this story - Oct 5, 2014
Sirajul's Rating
4.1

A good story based on a treasure trove of secondary data (sources revealed; links provided), and also based on the writer’s best judgment. It noted that the initial democracy movement in 2011 in Egypt was first supported but later betrayed by the U.S. Is that so? The U.S., in fact, isn’t conflicting. It strongly supported Mubarak, until just before his demise became inevitable. Then it strongly supported Morsi, until his demise became inevitable as well. Now it is strongly supporting el-Sisi. So, the pattern is clear. The U.S. strongly supports whoever is in power and in return, requires them to promote U.S. and Israel’s interests in the Middle East. Dealing with an autocratic regime is much easier since they don’t need ... More »

Democracy is, otherwise, based on the premise that ‘you can fool most of the people, most of the time. If you can’t, then democracy does not work’.

That pro-democracy script is long forgotten, as though it never existed. The U.S. political and media class are right back to openly supporting military autocracy in Egypt ... More »

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NT Rating: 4.2 | See All NT Reviews »
Sirajul commented on this story – Oct. 5, 2014

Why the U.S. did so? Was it because Morsi failed to deliver? America maybe at a bit odd with the fact that though the Morsi government was a freely elected government in Egypt, they are Muslim Brotherhood who reportedly stepped in and hijacked the people’s revolution in 2011 when it ... More »

Sirajul posted and reviewed this story - Oct 3, 2014
Sirajul's Rating
4.5

This investigative report is good journalism because it derives information both on the spot, from consulting experts and from the writers' own best judgments. The info the story provides, such as, 'Assad's fall would immediately increase Turkey's influence as a regional power'; many Kurds share Halil Akbas (a local politician from the southern Turkish city of Sanliurfa and a member of the Kurdish Democratic Regions Party) belief that 'Erdogan has made a pact with the Islamic State'; 'Turks seemed uncomfortable with Kurdish independence';and 'The US badly needs NATO-member Turkey in its anti-Islamic State coalition and has been doing all it can to get Erdogan to join' etc. The story helps the readers connect the dots as to why ... More »

All points in the story certainly make sense. But they don't really give any serious insight into the fundamental unknown: Does Turkey intend to fight ISIL, or just posture publicly while continuing to play a double game? If we look at deeds not word, it’s not encouraging. I’ve seen reports that Turkey continues to treat wounded ISIS fighters in their hospitals, and then releases them.

The country has been strangely reserved when it comes to dealing with the Islamic State. It is the neighboring country that is perhaps most threatened by the jihadist ... More »

See Full Review » (24 answers)
NT Rating: 4.5 | See All NT Reviews »
Sirajul posted this story - Oct 3, 2014
Sirajul posted and reviewed this story - Oct 3, 2014
Sirajul posted this story - Oct 3, 2014
Sirajul reviewed this story - Oct 3, 2014
Sirajul's Rating
4.2

Either the Americans 'should be protesting', or the Chinese leaders are able to figure out the American ways how they could just make elections so expensive that only their preferred candidates will be able to afford to run. This is something that the Americans can teach them. Pricing dissidents out is much more democratic than simply rejecting them. In the meantime, Mr. Xi Jinping can only be jealous of the Americans.

Today there’s no “white primary.” Today, there’s a “green primary.” To run in any election, primary or general, candidates must raise ... More »

See Full Review » (17 answers)
NT Rating: 4.1 | See All NT Reviews »
Sirajul reviewed this story - Oct 3, 2014
Sirajul's Rating
4.4

This story by Kennette Benedict is an instance of good journalism because it breaks a new ground that hasn't been covered enough, or discussed in the mainstream. She gives an intelligent perspective on the lapses and gaps of the Western powers on geopolitical and foreign policy matters that hasn’t been explored well, and/or being neglected so far. Her arguments are well-supported and logical, and it presents useful information in a new standpoint. It also make intricate issues easier to comprehend, and provides enough background. This opinion piece has become meaningful by its analysis, and the way it is interpreted.

I think the analysis’s point is correct that the West believed so deeply in the triumph of a market-based economic system that they even dismantled their own regulatory bodies, including those regulating financial institutions, in a misguided effort to make the United States more competitive in the global market. The result, as we now know from the financial meltdown of 2008, was disastrous. It is just as the belief in centrally-controlled economies led to the collapse of the Soviet Union.

By “too late” I mean years and even decades too late. That’s because the two major foreign policy debacles the United States faces today could have been avoided by ... More »

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NT Rating: 4.4 | See All NT Reviews »
Sirajul commented on this story – Oct. 2, 2014

The West and the United States in particular have turned away from institution building in the Middle East as they did so for Europe. The result is disruption and disorder, abetted by arms sales, ending in mob rule in parts of the Middle East and now in Ukraine. So, it is, more or ... More »

Sirajul posted and reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2014
Sirajul commented on this story – Sep. 29, 2014

The protesters were reportedly brought together by the student organizers and the ‘Occupy Central’ campaign very quickly, and with ‘appropriate gears’, which is a civil disobedience movement that had threatened to shut down Hong Kong’s financial district ... More »

Sirajul posted and reviewed this story - Sep 29, 2014
Sirajul's Rating
4.1

A good brief by Adam Chandler on the unfolding events of the democracy demonstrations in Hong Kong. This excerpt is really interesting. It shows how China copied the British, who, in the name of ensuring stability and order, and promoting the colonial power's interest, not minding if it promoted the local people's interest but also not particularly caring. It is definitely unfolding a good summary of British rule started retelling by the Chinese once again.

China can only be jealous of the old British authorities who didn't have to let the Hong Kong people vote, at all, for Chris Patten, David Wilson, Edward Youde, Murray MacLehose, and the rest of them. The British way of simply appointing the Governor without consulting the people must look really good to Beijing just about now.

The protests, which started a student sit-in last week, have been propelled by China’s decision to vet candidates for Hong Kong’s first-ever elections, which ... More »

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NT Rating: 4.2 | See All NT Reviews »
Sirajul posted this story - Sep 29, 2014
Sirajul posted and reviewed this story - Sep 29, 2014
Sirajul reviewed this story - Sep 27, 2014
Sirajul's Rating
4.2

“Light water reactor is not a technology we have,” he said. “We would have to rely on others for it and we can’t rely on others.” More »

See Full Review » (17 answers)
NT Rating: 4.1 | See All NT Reviews »
Sirajul commented on this story – Sep. 25, 2014

UNAMA, the US and all major actors turned a blind eye on the massive fraud in the Afghan election which undermined their institutions, destroyed the trust of their voters and hurt Afghan economy and society as a whole. Why? For anybody’s guess … A ... More »

Sirajul posted and reviewed this story - Sep 25, 2014
Sirajul's Rating
4.6

An information-packed and well-referenced South Asia Chanel of Foreign Policy story which is delivering briefing esp. on Afghanistan and Pakistan. The story writer has also decent credentials (retired State Dept Foreign Service officer who holds a Ph.D. in Central Asian history from the George Washington University). The story is good journalism because it contains many important links and references, and his sources quoted are nearly identified. The story, however, was quite straight in delivering data and interpretation, and thus, draws flak and supports both from readers’ comments.

One commenter wrote: “Thanks to Mr. Chris Mason for telling the truth... I’m glad to see at least one person in the West who is telling the truth about Afghanistan's election.” It’s actually a top technical and true story of the 2014 Afghan election I have read. It unveils some sad facts. “The last nail in the coffin of Afghan democracy is put for whose interest” is readers’ guess.

The key point is this: Ashraf Ghani did not win the election. The U.S. Center for Naval Analysis (CNA) concluded in July that it was mathematically impossible for Ghani to ... More »

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NT Rating: 4.6 | See All NT Reviews »
Sirajul posted and reviewed this story - Sep 25, 2014
Sirajul posted and reviewed this story - Sep 25, 2014
Sirajul's Rating
4.2

An analysis by Foreign Policy Group CEO/Editor Mr. Rothkopf who addresses many of the tensions between the public statements, private concerns, and underlying dilemmas that make the present ME so difficult. This story, however, primarily based on President Obama's UNGA speech while some other leaders speeches and backhand parleys are also discussed.

Forty years ago researchers in the U.S. Forest Service known to have identified a class of ‘Wicked Problems’, in which a solution for one group of stakeholders represented problems for others. Added to that are hatred, religious bigotry, lust for power, real grievances, vengeance, huge arms into the mix. Any long-term solutions set must be much longer on common goals, delivering needed public goods, changing population values and attitudes. Many think the world need to ... More »

The question now is what factors will tip the balance so that the story told (and sold) in press releases and talking points comes to pass — rather than the one that ... More »

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NT Rating: 4.0 | See All NT Reviews »
Sirajul commented on this story – Sep. 25, 2014

The broader issues that Mr. David Rothkopf hints at are the problems that only regional powers and actors can resolve and no amount of US pressure can bring a closure to those issues. What US, from President Obama to analyst like Mr. Rothkopf, fail to realize, or have realized but ... More »

Sirajul posted and reviewed this story - Sep 25, 2014
Sirajul commented on this story – Sep. 16, 2014

The current Scottish government’s insistence on a sovereign Scotland becoming free of nuclear weapons would certainly pose enormous strategic and operational headaches for the NATO admirals and generals, even if a transitional grace period were agreed ... More »

Sirajul posted this story - Sep 16, 2014
Sirajul reviewed this story - Sep 16, 2014
Sirajul's Rating
4.6

This is good journalism because this lengthy CSM cover story reminds us that in the name of Scottish referendum, Britain actually faces two major referendums, one of which would physically shrink its population, reduce its landmass, and put key defense capabilities at risk. The other would sever its historical ties to Europe. Yes, exit of Scotland from the UK would increase the chances of the exit of the UK from the EU. Good report; informative, well-researched and relevant.

Yes, it is likely that if Scottish voters say 'Yes' to independence, not only will they tear up the map of Great Britain, they'll shake the twin pillars of Western Europe's postwar prosperity and security, the European Union and the US-led NATO defense alliance.

Many argue that a vote to leave, in either case, could mean Britain’s influence in the world is irrevocably diminished, including its “special relationship” with the ... More »

See Full Review » (26 answers)
NT Rating: 4.5 | See All NT Reviews »
Sirajul posted this story - Sep 16, 2014
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Comments
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