Citizen Silva, in Sunday Times, 16 June 2019, where the title is “The Tortoise on the Fence Post”
While indulging in my usual musings this weekend, pondering over the happenings in our land over the past few weeks, I was reminded about the story told to me by one of my friends a few months ago.
“I say Silva” he began “do you know that our president’s position these days is just like that of the famous tortoise on the fence post?”
I looked at him quizzically. “What tortoise? I cannot remember you telling me that particular story of yours. Remind me – I am all ears.”
Filed under accountability, american imperialism, centre-periphery relations, conspiracies, cultural transmission, disparagement, electoral structures, governance, historical interpretation, Indian Ocean politics, landscape wondrous, life stories, politIcal discourse, Presidential elections, self-reflexivity, sri lankan society, unusual people, world events & processes
General HMHA Herath, in Island, 15 May 2019, where the title is “Who was behind the Easter terrorist attacks?”
While the Islamic State has claimed responsibility, the real story is a bit more complicated than that. To millions of Sri Lankans the Easter Sunday tragedy must have seemed a nightmare come true, a frightening déjà vu of the rampant violence this island nation has known for thirty years of Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) terror. The horrific attacks in which an estimated 253 lost their lives and many hundreds were wounded, signaled that the decade’s calm that prevailed after LTTE’s 2009 destruction by Sri Lanka’s Army is over.
1 What went wrong?
At the time, victory over the LTTE inspired confidence and heady optimism. A 2012 defense seminar in Colombo heralded “Peace and Stability” as its core theme and the five ‘Rs’ (Reconstruction, Resettlement, Rehabilitation, Reintegration and Reconciliation) as the imperative agenda for Sri Lanka. The mood at the time was upbeat and the country’s future seemed bright. The safety of the post-war period brought to the country millions of tourists (2.1 million in 2017 alone), and the reconstruction of Sri Lankan economy and infrastructure commenced apace. With the horrific Easter disaster, this process has come to a grinding halt. And the troubling question is what developments allowed it to happen. Continue reading
Filed under accountability, Al Qaeda, arab regimes, communal relations, cultural transmission, electoral structures, governance, historical interpretation, Indian Ocean politics, Islamic fundamentalism, island economy, legal issues, life stories, LTTE, Muslims in Lanka, politIcal discourse, Rajapaksa regime, religiosity, security, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, suicide bombing, tourism, unusual people, vengeance, world events & processes
Chris Kenny, in The Australian, 8 May 2019, where the title runs “Egg attack on Morrison hints at rotten state of public debate”
The Albury egging was so pathetic it didn’t even crack the egg. But there would have been milliseconds of sharp concern and shambolic reactions, with one woman knocked to the ground, that ruined what otherwise would have been a terrific event for the Country Women’s Association. And while they will be outwardly phlegmatic, Scott Morrison, his staff and the Australian Federal Police close personal protection officers will be — pardon the pun — walking on eggshells for a while.
Filed under accountability, atrocities, Australian culture, australian media, cultural transmission, electoral structures, heritage, historical interpretation, legal issues, life stories, news fabrication, performance, political demonstrations, politIcal discourse, security, self-reflexivity, taking the piss, tolerance, trauma, truth as casualty of war, zealotry
Ameer Ali, in Colombo Telegraph, 6 May 2019 where the title runs “Anatomy Of An Islamist Infamy – II”
It takes two hands to clap and make a noise, and what a deadly noise did Sri Lankans hear during that fatal Easter Sunday? In the first part of this analysis the Muslim leadership hand was identified and discussed. This second part looks at the hand of governments that governed this country since independence and how they laid the remainder of the bricks that paved the bloody road.
Politicisation of Buddhism
Long before Ashraf and his SLMC allowed Islamism creep into Muslim politics, Bandaranaike (SWRD) politicised Buddhism to win his electoral battle against the UNP. His landslide victory at the 1956 General Elections to which he harnessed the support of Buddhist monks, Ayurvedic physicians and village school teachers demonstrated the political potential of Buddhism in changing governments in Sri Lanka, which even made American CIA to politicise Buddhism in South East Asia to fight against the rise of communism (Eugene Ford, Cold War Monks, 2017). While SWRD won the elections and lost his life at the hands of a Buddhist monk the Americans harnessed Buddhism and lost the fight against communism in Vietnam and Cambodia. Sri Lankans, Let Us Arise as ONE
Sri Lanka Muslim Civil Society was organized a “Rise up for Solidarity – Humanity Beyond Religion one Nation one Country at Colombo 7 Independence Squire-04th May | Picture by Ashraff. A. Samad
Filed under accountability, communal relations, conspiracies, democratic measures, economic processes, electoral structures, ethnicity, historical interpretation, Indian Ocean politics, Islamic fundamentalism, language policies, life stories, nationalism, political demonstrations, politIcal discourse, power politics