A new phase has begun in the armed struggle for East Pakistan's independence. Bangladesh liberation?
A new phase has begun in the armed struggle for East Pakistan's independence. Bangladesh liberation forces (Mukti Fauj) are now waging a guerrilla-style war against the Pakistan army from a network of swamps, rice paddies and jute fields clustered around the India-East Pakistan border.
Guerrillas say that since the last set battle between the Army and the resistance forces, in June, scores of small commando bands have established village bases in East Pakistan - helped by a sympathetic civil population.
Working through carefully-planned ambush and sabotage, they claim to have made a successful start in harrying the Pakistani army to what they hope will be a complete withdrawal from East Bengal. But when the monsoon season drizzles to a close at the end of September, the Pakistan army will have firmer ground to use air sport -- and the mechanized equipment which is now bogged down in the soggy terrain.
The professional hard core of the would-be liberation army has been estimated at anything from 2,000 upwards - while Pakistan Army counter-insurgency forces have been put at 80,000 men.
This film - shot by a Canadian Broadcasting Corporation crew - is the first to come from one of the guerrillas' village bases for some time.
In respect of an agreement between newsmen and guides, the village remains unnamed.