Can a coercive strategy in South Asia be counterproductive for the US?

Dr Shakuntala Bhabani
Contd from previous issue
The US’s perceived disregard for Bangladesh’s efforts and achievements in areas such as social development adds to the frustration felt by many Bangladeshis. Bangladesh has made significant progress in various sectors, including education, healthcare, and women’s empowerment, but the US’s policies often fail to acknowledge and appreciate these accomplishments. This creates a sense of alienation and disappointment among the Bangladeshi populace and raises questions about the US’s understanding of Bangladesh’s realities.
The US’s approach towards Bangladesh also needs to consider the broader regional context. Bangladesh has emerged as a significant actor in regional dynamics, particularly in terms of its geopolitical location and economic potential. Neglecting Bangladesh’s strategic importance and antagonizing policies risk pushing the country closer to other regional powers.
The US and the West must review their policies toward Bangladesh and adopt a more balanced and practical stance. A deeper comprehension of Bangladesh’s goals, difficulties, and contributions is necessary to forge a partnership that is more solid and mutually beneficial. Prioritizing constructive engagement, the US should concentrate on areas of shared interest, including as economic cooperation and counterterrorism initiatives, and address regional issues like climate change and maritime security.