Political Editor, Sunday Times, 19 May 2019, where the title runs “Sri Lanka caught in the big power conflicts”
When elephants fight, an African proverb says, it is the ants that get crushed. In essence that encapsulates how the small and weak become dangerously vulnerable when big powers fight for dominance and even hegemony. That is Sri Lanka now.
President Maithripala Sirisena returned from China on Thursday after adding another explosive chapter to this big nation power play. His Media Office head-lined a statement saying, “three significant agreements with China on national security and development were signed.” However, there was no mention of what these agreements were or the different titles.
Bilateral talks on security between China and Sri Lanka under way Continue reading
Filed under accountability, american imperialism, atrocities, China and Chinese influences, economic processes, foreign policy, governance, historical interpretation, Indian Ocean politics, Islamic fundamentalism, island economy, legal issues, life stories, military strategy, politIcal discourse, power politics, security, self-reflexivity, sri lankan society, truth as casualty of war, world events & processes
An ADDRESS by the Bishop of Colombo, Anglican Diocese,
“… …. do not demonize the entire Muslim community because of the sins of a few warped minds”
Media Briefing on current situation in the country by the Bishop of Colombo, Diocese of Colombo … viz. Dhiloraj Canagasabey
Filed under accountability, charitable outreach, communal relations, heritage, historical interpretation, human rights, Indian Ocean politics, Islamic fundamentalism, landscape wondrous, life stories, performance, power politics, refugees, religiosity, self-reflexivity, sri lankan society, tolerance, unusual people, world events & processes
Tisaranee Gunasekara, whose choice of title has been “Secularism or Faith” — in an article which appeared in Groundviews as well as Sri Lanka Guardian
“And even here
Lies the other shore
Waiting to be reached.”
Tagore (My Reminiscences)
The blue, red, yellow, orange and white lights are on, as are the makeshift stalls selling lanterns. Yet few pause to see, haggle, buy. Vesak, so near chronologically, had never seemed so far away spiritually. After the Easter Sunday Massacre, fears were raised about Vesak too being turned into a bloody spectacle by the IS, working through its local adherents. As it turned out, neither the IS nor its local adherents were necessary to turn Vesak into a season of violence. The Sinhalese managed the task on their own.
Filed under accountability, atrocities, Buddhism, cultural transmission, education policy, fundamentalism, historical interpretation, Left politics, life stories, political demonstrations, politIcal discourse, racist thinking, religiosity, self-reflexivity, sri lankan society, the imaginary and the real, unusual people, vengeance, world events & processes, zealotry
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