November 7, 2012 - NOT a Patriotic Holiday in Bangladesh

I grant you, many days of the year are not patriotic holidays in Bangladesh. But November 7 used to be celebrated under the grand name “National Revolution and Solidarity Day.” This holiday commemorated an uprising in 1975, and it was celebrated until 2007. Now some people denounce the uprising as the killing of freedom fighters—and the national holiday is on the scrapheap of history.

Yet I still found “National Revolution and Solidarity Day in Bangladesh” on several lists of worldwide holidays on the internet. There was no little asterisk explaining that it WAS a holiday but is no longer a holiday, no nuanced explanation that the day might not have had anything to do with solidarity (a movement of unity within a group or nation) in the first place, no warning that today's visitors in Bangladesh shouldn't expect parades and fireworks!

Once again, I re-realize that, although there is a lot of information on the internet, there is also a lot of misinformation. And the misinformation seems likely to be true because it is repeated on so many different websites, put out by so many different people. It takes some time and effort to realize that many people just copy-paste stuff without checking it out—and so the misinformation is as likely to be copied and repeated as the information.

On to Bangladesh!

Bangladesh is in South Asia, next to India. It used to be part of Great Britain's Indian Empire, but in 1947 Britain gave up and carved up its former colony into India, Pakistan, and East Pakistan. It was East Pakistan (sometimes called East Bengal) that is now the independent nation of Bangladesh.

Bangladesh is a low-lying country on the Ganges River delta, and it is warm and rainy, prone to cyclones (which are the same as hurricanes) and flooding. Another low-lying nation, the Netherlands, is helping to fund a project to build “cross dams” and allow silt to build up and create new, fertile land.

Bangladesh suffers, not just from storms and floods, but also from poverty, overpopulation, and corruption in government. Still, a lot of progress has been made there. For example, life expectancy has increased by 23 years (from 47 years to 70 years). That's a pretty big jump!

Check out some of the beauties and interesting sights of Bangladesh in this tourism video

For more on Bangladesh, check out this earlier post

Also on this date:

Physicist Lise Meitner's birthday 

National Cat Week 

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