Kieren Shafritz De Zoysa’s Essay “Sri Lanka: My Cultural Connections” … submitted for the Queen’s Commonwealth Essay Competition … written just before he was among those killed by a Muslim bomber at the Cinnamon Grand Hotel on Easter Sunday 21/4/2019**
The tropical sun burns bright. On my way to school, red and black buses full of office workers, tuk-tuks of all colours, Porsches, Land Rovers, and BMWs crowd the roads. There are few road rules. I pass a speeding blur of white colonial buildings, ancient banyan trees, old elegant homes behind high walls, short ladies pushing trash carts, small kadeys selling cream crackers and sodas, and road-side hawkers offering freshly plucked red rambutans, golden yellow mangoes, young orange coconuts. Steel and glass office towers stand high over small houses. Cranes rise above expensive new apartment buildings. Occasionally I see a Buddhist monk in orange robes. Lonely, stray dogs roam the streets and sidewalks scavenging for food, near tourists who turn bright lobster red taking selfies in front of thousand-year-old temples.
Filed under accountability, cultural transmission, education, ethnicity, jihad, landscape wondrous, life stories, meditations, patriotism, self-reflexivity, sri lankan society, terrorism, the imaginary and the real, trauma, travelogue, unusual people, world events & processes
Rajeewa Jayaweera, in Island, 27 October 2019, with this title “Hakeem-Bathiudeen United Front”
That the Rajapaksas were responsible for the political advent of Rishad Bathiudeen (RB) and his All Ceylon Makkal Congress (ACMC) is a widely believed theory. It was supposed to counter the political monopolization of the Muslim community by the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) and its leader and Rauff Hakeem (RH). Nevertheless, recent events indicate that may not be the case. When push comes to shove, they seem to be operating in unison, protecting and defending each other.
Filed under communal relations, ethnicity, governance, historical interpretation, Islamic fundamentalism, landscape wondrous, life stories, Muslims in Lanka, performance, politIcal discourse, sri lankan society, taking the piss
Chandre Dharmawardana, in Island, 29 October 2019, where the title is “The ITAK’s 13-Point Letter””
According to news reports in The Island of 18 Oct. 2019), the TNA has sent a 13-point to the presidential candidates, even though the prospective President has been shackled by the 19A crafted by the Jayampathy-Sumanthiran cabal. It should not be forgotten that parties constituting the TNA backed the LTTE in its heyday and were the political facades of Prabhakaran’s terror campaign, even though their very own colleagues like Amirthalingam and Yogeswaran had been murdered in cold blood by Prabhakaran. Those acts have never been condemned by the TNA.
Filed under accountability, centre-periphery relations, chauvinism, communal relations, democratic measures, devolution, doctoring evidence, economic processes, electoral structures, ethnicity, governance, heritage, historical interpretation, Indian Ocean politics, language policies, life stories, LTTE, modernity & modernization, politIcal discourse, power politics, Rajapaksa regime, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, Tamil civilians, Tamil migration, tolerance, transport and communications, truth as casualty of war, welfare & philanthophy, world events & processes, zealotry