Aatish Taseer, courtesy of SUNDAY, where the title is “a People without a Story”
celebrations in the south–May 2009
FOUR years ago this week, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam announced that their struggle for an independent homeland in northern Sri Lanka had “reached its bitter end.” The group had been fighting on behalf of the Tamil people for more than a quarter-century, and its defeat was absolute. Today, great sections of Tamil country are still a scene of devastation. The houses are either destroyed or brand-new; the land is uncultivated and overgrown; there are forests of decapitated Palmyra palms, damaged by heavy shelling. And then there are the relics of war — graveyards of L.T.T.E. vehicles rotting in the open air; the remains of a ship, its superstructure blown to pieces and in whose rusting starboard a gaping hole gives on to blue sea. Continue reading
Filed under LTTE, politIcal discourse, population, Rajapaksa regime, reconciliation, rehabilitation, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, Tamil civilians, trauma, truth as casualty of war, women in ethnic conflcits, world affairs
Born on 12 December 1935 in Colombo, Shelagh Goonewardene was the younger daughter of Lt. Col. Dr T.R. Jansen, OBE, ED (one-time Commander of the volunteer corps), and Mrs Georgiana Jansen. Like her elder sister Suzette, Shelagh was educated at Bishop’s College, Colombo, and benefited from the fine teaching of Mrs Doreen Keuneman, Miss Norma Vanderwall, Miss Lesley Tirimanne (now Alles), and her special mentors Pauline and Dick Hensman. Her love for the stage made itself evident from her earliest years at Bishop’s, where she appeared in innumerable playlets devised for class and school entertainment , besides acting the parts of Melisande in Apple Pie Order, Rosalind in As You Like It, and taking a starring role in Patricia Pantin Munro’s production of Alice in Wonderland. While still at school she appeared on the Colombo stage in Chekhov’s play The Wedding (for the Little Theatre Group), and from there it was a short step to the ‘Dram Soc’ at the University of Ceylon in Peradeniya, where Professor Lyn Ludowyk was quick to observe her talent. Shaw’s Major Barbara and Androcles and the Lion were among the plays in which she took part under Ludowyk’s direction. Continue reading
Shelagh Goonewardene ** …. sadly and fondly In Memoriam -Editor
The words are Shakespeare’s, the greatest English-speaking playwright, and continue “and men and women merely players / They have their exits and their entrances.’’
For all performers, including politicians who are invariably performers of high calibre, this is the view of the world that is dominant. For me, I was a performer since childhood and devised my own plays with my sister and friends to which we would invite our families and the neighbours. This activity was welcomed at school where we were encouraged once a year to produce a concert for the Principal’s birthday. Each class was left entirely to its own resources, sans teachers, to produce an item which could be dramatic, comedic, tragic and frequently involved mime and song or music of some kind. All this was preparation for me to continue these activities when I entered the University of Ceylon in 1954. The University Dramatic Society had been established by an Englishman, Professor Leigh Smith, in 1922 when he was Professor1 of English. Continue reading
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Courtesy of COLOMBO TELEGRAPH — SEE http://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/a-sri-lankan-buddhist-monk-speaks-out-let-sri-lanka-have-thousands-of-buddha-putras-like-him/ … and also absorb the blog comments it draws. NOTE: the sinhala is precise and lucid if high-flown. Indeed, it is a lesson in concise clarity. AND it is translated intoTamil and English as well. a MUST SEE and must listen –both media.
A Note from Dr WA Wijewardena: “It is indeed heartening to see an erudite Buddhist priest speaking out, guided by the teaching of the Master, when many have chosen to remain silent. Ven Dhammananda, Lecturer at the University of Kelaniya, speaks through his experience, but has not been angered or being revengeful despite the personal loss to him. Let Sri Lanka have thousands of Buddha Putras like him to guide this nation, which is now stranded and moving aimlessly, to its future glory!” says a former Deputy Governor – Central Bank of Sri Lanka, Dr. W.A. Wijewardena. Continue reading
Filed under communal relations, cultural transmission, ethnicity, life stories, politIcal discourse, reconciliation, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, Tamil civilians, unusual people, women in ethnic conflcits, world affairs
Michael Roberts hijacking Dhaneshi Yatawara
I: Preamble by Michael Roberts
Dhaneshi Yatawara is a Sri Lankan reporter whom I do not know and have no contact with. I happened to be in Sri Lanka in April-June 2009 and collected news clippings, which now guide me to items on web. Among the latter are a series of striking photographs provided by Dhaneshi Yatawara on the 10th and 17th May 2009 respectively. The first lot were obviously (though not so stated) snapped on the foreshores in the Pulmoddai or Trinco area as Tamil IDPs injured and “carers” were disembarked from ICRC ships guided by the SL Navy. Parenthetically I note here between the 10th February and 15th May 2009 the ICRC ships “Green Ocean” and “Seruvila” escorted by the SL Navy made several trips and evacuated “over 13,500 sick and wounded people and their caretakers” (http://www.icrc.org/eng/resources/ documents/ update/sri-lanka-update-090609.htm).
This Pic is not from Yatawara Continue reading
Filed under accountability, citizen journalism, economic processes, historical interpretation, IDP camps, life stories, LTTE, military expenditure, military strategy, politIcal discourse, power politics, propaganda, Rajapaksa regime, reconciliation, rehabilitation, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, Tamil civilians, tamil refugees, tolerance, truth as casualty of war, welfare & philanthophy, women in ethnic conflcits, world events & processes
Type of Publication: Edited Collection…..Publisher(s): The Centre for Policy Alternatives (CPA), and the Friedrich Naumann Stiftung für die Freiheit (FNF)
Place Publication: Colombo, Sri Lanka ….. Date of Publication: 21st December 2012…….
Size of Publication: 1168 pages in two volumes (Vol. I: pp.1-660; Vol. II: pp.661-1168)
ISBN: 978-955-1655-93-8 ………..Bar Code: 9 789551 655938
Editor: Asanga Welikala
Website: http://republicat40.org (entire contents downloadable in complete volumes or as individual chapters)
Pakiasothy Saravanamuttu of CPA
Purpose and Scope of the Publication: In 2012, Sri Lanka marks the fortieth anniversary of the founding of its republic. With the promulgation of the first republican constitution on 22nd May 1972, Ceylon severed its remaining constitutional links with Britain that had survived the grant of independence as a dominion in 1948. Both the process adopted in the making of that constitution as well as its substance were historic – a decisive ‘constitutional moment’ – reflecting dramatic political currents that had dominated the late-colonial and post-independence period, and establishing a constitutional order that has, despite being replaced by a second republican constitution in 1978, retained its essential substantive character as a highly centralised unitary state to the present. Continue reading
Filed under accountability, cultural transmission, democratic measures, discrimination, economic processes, ethnicity, female empowerment, governance, historical interpretation, language policies, Left politics, LTTE, nationalism, NGOs, politIcal discourse, power politics, power sharing, prabhakaran, Rajapaksa regime, reconciliation, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, terrorism, tolerance, women in ethnic conflcits
My mother is the 43rd Chief justice of this country. She is also the 1st female Chief Justice in this country’s 200+ year history. She is an academic, one who possessed a PhD in Law before it went on sale. She is also a loving sister, mother and a wife. She is a hardworking woman who loves her country dearly and wishes to preserve its seemingly flailing integrity. She is not a politician. She is not the kind of person who expects to do something and expect something in return. She is also not the kind of person who would waver or change under pressure or intimidation. She is not going to change her conscience on a whim. There have been many occasions in which she could have given in and been rewarded lavishly. Most people are unaware of who my mother really is. Until recently, seldom would anyone have heard anything from her or about her. She has always believed that as a judge and as the Chief Justice, she must not socialize or be seen to favour any party. It is not that she is not a sociable person. It is purely because she feels it’s a burden she must carry in order to uphold the integrity of the august position which she holds. Is that incapacity? Is that misbehaviour? The powers that be claim the impending impeachment to be one to uphold democracy and the concept of separation of powers. Frankly, in my humble opinion, it is one of vengeance. It is one of spite and pure hatred. Continue reading
Filed under accountability, citizen journalism, cultural transmission, discrimination, disparagement, life stories, power politics, Rajapaksa regime, sri lankan society, unusual people, women in ethnic conflcits
Christopher Beam on “How to embellish your life story without getting caught” ….
The Fair Niromi
Especially recommended for DBS Jeyaraj, Nikki Barraclough, Shanika Sriyananda and all those who have swallowed the performance of Niromi de Soyza in presenting her so-called autobiographical memoir, Tamil Tigress, wth the assistance of Allen & Unwin [of Demidenko fame]. A careful study will probably indicate, as Arun Ambalavanar suggests, that she has at times leaned on the work of Narayan Swamy — thereby repeating the same little mistakes that he made in relating a few incidents [mistakes that are inevitable in relating a complex story from afar, but are less likely if one is a bystander or participant in the events]
. The real Niromi , namely, Subothini Mariatta Anandarajah
SEE ** Judy Mariampillai in http://www.lankaweb.com/news/items/2012/09/21/unfolded-truth-about-the-tamil-tigress-book-written-by-niromi-de-soyza-sri-lankan-born/
** Michael Roberts: “Clouds of Deception: Jeyaraj anoints and cloaks Niromi Tigress,” in www.groundviews.org
** Michael Roberts: “Niromi de Soysa’s Path of Redemption with Deception? or Both?” 27 October 2011, http://thuppahi.wordpress.com/2011/10/27/niromi-de-soysa%E2%80%99s-path-of-redemption-with-deception-or-both/
Myrna Setunga, 22 July 2009 …. providing a summary description of conditions in early June when Zone 4 was being set up and moving on to circumstances in July. Web Editor.
Dear family and friends, This is the second part of the report on my visits to Vavuniya. I had intentions of printing this report and posting it to selected people because I do not want this report to be circulated. Please think twice before you pass this on, because I could get into trouble. Some of this information could be seen as sensitive. My printer is refusing to obey my commands – so here it is in the form of an email. Your comments are welcome.
As I said in the emailed report we went to Menik Farm on the 1st of June. We were in the temporary camp [in Zone 4] which consisted of tents and could see the semi- permanent zinc structures in the distance. These are similar to the ones constructed after the Tsunami. There is a barbed wire fence separating the two parts but I saw a woman quietly creeping through the fence to get to the tent section. Any relative from the outside who wants to visit an IDP in the camp has to wait at the gate till the person is summoned over the loud speaker. The visitors and their parcels are thoroughly searched. I saw this happen at all the camps I visited. The visitor is not allowed into the camp and can speak to the IDP in a special shed which is in full view of the Military Police who guard all the camps. The reason given for this is that there are still LTTE members among the IDPs. They have found the wife and children of Tamilshelvam among the IDPs. Prabakaran’s parents too are in the Menik farm Camp. One has to therefore understand why these people are like prisoners behind barbed wire. Continue reading
Filed under accountability, citizen journalism, disaster relief team, IDP camps, life stories, LTTE, NGOs, population, Rajapaksa regime, reconciliation, rehabilitation, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, Tamil civilians, tamil refugees, truth as casualty of war, welfare & philanthophy, women in ethnic conflcits, world events & processes