Category Archives: foreign policy

FOR Sri Lanka: Engaging Lord Naseby and His Journeys in Sri Lanka

Michael Roberts

Since I had been introduced to the British peer Lord Michael Naseby in the surrounds of the House of Lords in March 2018,[1] I assumed that he had been born into the aristocratic upper layer of British society. Wrong. It required his book Sri Lanka for me to learn that he was from the upper middle class and had contested parliamentary seats from the late-960s on behalf of the Conservative Party in what were Labour strongholds – with his peerage being of 1990s vintage. As vitally, his early career as a marketing executive had seen him working in Pakistan and Bengal in the early 1960s before he was stationed in Sri Lanka as a marketing manager for Reckitt and Colman in the period 1963-64.

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Word Pictures in Deciphering Sri Lankan History, Politics, War

Jonathon Riley, reviewing Michael Naseby: Sri Lanka. Paradise Lost. Paradise Regained, 2020, London, Unicorn

Sri Lanka, Ceylon – geographically so close to the Indian sub-continent and yet with a culture and history that has been for many centuries distinct. What a difference a few miles of water make – as we in England know well. I recall visiting Sri Lanka in 1993 and, on the anniversary of independence in 1948, and reading a leader in the newspaper that suggested maybe it would have been a good idea to have stayed with Britain a few years longer. A brave sentiment indeed and one which, after more than twenty years, makes much more sense having read Michael Naseby’s book.

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The Trump-and-Modi Fandango: Imperial Arms in the Indo-Pacificic

This article, entitled “Two State Hypocrites—The Indo-Pacific Humbugs” – written by one “Pettibandige” in Asian Tribune annoyed me greatly when I glanced at it first: in part because it is a slashing hack job steeped in bile and excess; and in part because of its glossing over of the Japanese imperial expansionist programme in the first half of the 20th century via its assertion “Possibly Pearl Harbour was a result.”

However, the stream of stridency adopted in the essay seems to be a literary device that is (A) in step with its play on the Sinhala ge name “Patabändige” – modified here to “Petti” as in box; and (B) in line with its continuous mockery of the two leading actors, namely Trump and Modi. I have therefore inserted my own imprint by marking those points I question in black and those jibes that have some foundation in red …..  Michael Roberts

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Pictorial Angles in Michael Naseby’s Tale of His Engagements with Sri Lank, 1963-to-today

Michael Naseby’s Sri Lanka. Paradise Lost. Paradise Regained is on the market was originally due to be launched in Colombo in early April — an event knocked on the solar plexus by the Corona-virus pandemic. We will need time to acquire reviews of this large book; but let me spark interests among lap-dogs as well as cynics by presenting a election of its illustrations.

Michael Morris with family friend Mrs Veena Talwatte … & iron cages used by the LTTE for their prisoners. Continue reading

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MCC Compact under Question

Press Release Issued by the Public Opinion Committee on March 3rd 2020 under the Heading “Is the Government all set to sign the MCCC?” ….. http://dbsjeyaraj.com/dbsj/archives/67895

A high-profile member of the Millennium Challenge Corporation Compact (MCCC) review committee has revealed that the report submitted by them to the President was not prepared according to established process. A Presidential Committee was appointed to conduct a ‘Comprehensive study on the Millennium Challenge Corporation Project’ and submit recommendations to the Government in mid-February this year. Neither the review Committee’s mandate nor its terms of reference were made public.

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Today’s HR Drumbeats vs GSL: Some Critical Responses

Challenges to Recent HR Allegations from Amanda Hodge and Others

A recent criticism by Amanda Hodge in The Australian is one mark of the vociferous claims that human rights activists are under threat in Sri Lanka today under the new regime. Former Minister Eran Wickremeratne’s public claim in the Colombo Telegraph of 21st February that a witch-hunt is in progress and that the Swiss embassy issue had led to the unjustifiable hounding of Dharisha Bastians, Krishantha Cooray and former CID Director Shani Abeysekera adds fuel to this fire. The second of these claims is bracketed here for further comment when more information reaches us.

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US Scheming Looms over India and Lanka

Shenali Waduge, in Lankaweb, 9 February 2020, where the title is Balkanizing India: National Security dimensions for India & Sri Lanka”

Indo-Sri Lanka relations have never been what either country would have liked it to be. What both countries should realize is that small as Sri Lanka may be, India cannot afford to bully it or destabilize it as India would have liked. The terrain is now far different than when India could call the shots in 1980s. There are bigger and far more powerful players that even India needs to weather with caution. There are many faux pas that India will not like to admit to, but what India must realize is that if it is in Sri Lanka’s best interest to ensure India remains unbalkanized, it is to India’s best interest that Sri Lanka remains without elements that covertly propose to do what was done to the Soviet Union & the former Yugoslavia.

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